Could This New Lawsuit Be The Death of the Hotel Newspaper?

Discussion in 'Hilton | HHonors' started by uggboy, Aug 2, 2011.  |  Print Topic

  1. uggboy
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    uggboy Gold Member

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    Could This New Lawsuit Be The Death of the Hotel Newspaper?:eek:

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    This story is for all the people who leave us nasty comments when we complain about annoying hotel fees.At least we haven't filed a lawsuit about them yet.

    Yes, one man is so upset about being charged 75 cents for what he thought was a free copy of USA Today that he is suing Hilton Hotels in a federal class action lawsuit. The San Francisco Chroniclereports:

    Rodney Harmon, 55, of Sacramento said he visited the Hilton Garden Inn Sonoma County Airport on March 28 and saw a copy of USA Today outside his door.

    "He did not request a newspaper and assumed it had been placed there by hotel staff," said the suit, filed Wednesday in U.S. District Court in San Francisco. Harmon didn't realize until later that a 75-cent charge for the paper had been added to his bill.

    Harmon accused Hilton of deliberately hiding the newspaper charge by describing the fee in an "extremely small font which is difficult to notice or read" on the sleeve of the room card.​

    Hmpf. We always thought that "complimentary newspaper" description listed under amenities on a hotel's website or included in the dreaded resort fees was redundant because we assumed that the newspapers were always complimentary? Guess not.

    Also, Harmon's suit not only claims the charge was deceptive but also that handing out newspapers is bad for the environment. Zing! Hilton Hotels has not issued a statement due to the pending litigation but we wouldn't be surprised if hotels started to pull back from offering newspapers to guests in the mornings.

    Now if you excuse us, we are going to go make Team Rodney t-shirts and get our jars of glitter ready to throw on him as he enters court.

    http://www.hotelchatter.com/story/2...w_Lawsuit_Be_The_Death_of_the_Hotel_Newspaper_
     
  2. JohnDeere19
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    JohnDeere19 Gold Member

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    Let's get rid of resort fees while we're at it!
     
  3. uggboy
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    uggboy Gold Member

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    Indeed, resort fees should be forbidden!:)
     
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  4. SC Flier
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  5. uggboy
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  6. KyRoamer
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    KyRoamer Gold Member

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    Shame on the Hilton.:( When I get an unsolicted item in the mail (calendars, cards, etc.) I keep them and throw away the request for payment. It is a gift unless i ordered it. Why should it be different in a hotel?

    The only way hotels learn is to be sued. Otherwise greed keeps them doing it.

    What next Hilton, a charge for toliet paper and soap?:eek:
     
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  7. uggboy
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    Indeed, nothing seems impossible these days!:eek:
     
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  8. mhnadel
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    mhnadel Silver Member

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    In my experience, there is usually a little box notifying one of the fee on the card when one checks in (and offering the chance to opt out). The hotel can't be held responsible for people failing to read the fine print.
     
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  9. KyRoamer
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    Small print -- opt out.:mad: Sounds sneaky. If it was an opt in I'd be OK. Maybe the suit should invoke consumer protection laws and seek attorney fees and, if available, triple damages.
     
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  10. ACEDAD
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    ACEDAD Silver Member

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    Come on, people. Really? Everyone is really stunned that the paper left at your door every morning has a cost associated with it?

    And how many years have hotels been leaving papers at the room door?
     
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  11. SC Flier
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    From the link that I posted above for the Audit Bureau of Circulations, there are two main ways that this is supposed to work:
    1. If it's an additional cost, then you can only be charged if you select an option to opt-in and you must be given an option to opt-out.
    2. If it's part of the room rate but allows a refund, then you only get that refund if you opt-out.

    In my experience, the second method is the most commonly used one. I'm sure that this varies among hotel brands.

    If this particular Hilton Garden Inn has been following the first method but is not actually getting an opt-in from guests, then there's a case here. But even if there's a case, I doubt that it will extend to many other Hilton hotels.
     
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  12. uggboy
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    Getting a newspaper in this way, it really should be free!:)
     
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  13. RestlessLocationSyndrome
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    RestlessLocationSyndrome Silver Member

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    Honestly, I have opted out several times due to the fact that I want to help the environment, I don't read the newspaper usually and it gets in my way as I roll my briefcase over it on my way out. At the same time, each time I've opted out, I have not once actually received my refund. Not a big deal as these are usually corporate rates which might not qualify but still an inconsistency.
     
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  14. violist
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    violist Gold Member

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    I'd be pretty happy to see the death of the hotel newspaper.
     
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  15. From NYC
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    Depends where I am on whether I opt out, assuming a choice is given, or not. London, I’ll usually take the paper, but not if it’s USA Today; I’d rather have local news and listings. Int’l Herald Tribune - opt out because I’ll get more up to date news via NY Times over the internet. Other cities, it depends. If not given an option, then I’ll let it come and not opt out, however, I’ve never had an issue removing it from the bill if I wasn’t given the opt out choice at check-in.
     
  16. cvsara
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    cvsara Gold Member

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    I haven't taken a newspaper at home since our bird died. No need for it them, nor at the Hiltons.
    I do agree, that I could 'opt out' but as someone up above suggested, read the fine print when you check in.
    If every one did that or had to do that, the last few persons standing in line to check in, might not ever get checked in!
    Same goes for those darn safes in the room. You pay a 'fee' for those too. Another thing to 'opt out'?
     

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