July 12 - Hotel Drip Pricing Comes Under Fire By District of Columbia Attorney General


PRESS STATEMENT


BTC Urges All State AGs To Join In Safeguarding Citizens’ Interests

July 10, 2019, RADNOR, PA - Business Travel Coalition (BTC) today applauded District of Columbia (DC) Attorney General Karl A. Racine for suing Marriott International over its practice of drip pricing, or hidden fees that surprise consumers. Typical carve-outs include “resort,” “housekeeping” and “Internet access” fees; however, there are others. BTC calls upon all State Attorneys General to join in eradicating this deplorable, anti consumer practice. 

Drip pricing is a deception scheme whereby a supplier carves out a portion of its true price; labels that portion as a mandatory extra fee or charge; deducts it from the true price; and features the artificially reduced remainder of the true price in advertising, online postings and price information supplied to global distributions systems and travel agencies. 

“No one is trying to force hotels to abandon the services they claim the fees cover. We’re just demanding hotels make sure they price them honestly and accurately. What we’re asking for is quite simple: If you have to pay it, it has to go into the posted price,” stated BTC Chairman Kevin Mitchell. 

“Corporate, university and government travel and sourcing managers strongly support actions that will make the hotel/resort marketplace more transparent and honest for all the stakeholders. Unfortunately, the industry has embraced unfair and deceptive drip pricing to such a pervasive degree that the only recourse is for State Attorneys General and the Federal Trade Commission - under its authority from Section 5 of the Federal Trade Commission Act - to intervene on behalf of the consumer,” added Mitchell.

(Download the DC complaint at: https://oag.dc.gov/sites/default/files/2019-07/Marriott-Complaint.pdf.)

 

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