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What Is the Future for Newspaper in Hotels?

We just talked about hotel fees last week. Newspaper happens to be one of those possible charges. This CBS News video reported that a man in Sacramento, California filed a class-action lawsuit for 7 million consumers against Hilton Hotels for $5 million. As quoted in the statement, the Hilton family was sued because the hotels “intentionally, recklessly, and/or negligently concealed, suppressed, and misled customers about the scheme.”

This lawsuit was triggered by the man’s stay in a Hilton Garden Inn. The man picked up the 75 cent USA Today that was lying in front of his hotel room without knowing the fact that he would be charged the 75 cents for the newspaper.

Here, I will leave the decision on this case to you and the judge. I, on the other hand, would like to share with you another relevant CBS news article: Marriott, which was the first hotel chain that delivered USA Today and other newspaper to guest rooms, had ended the “automatic delivery” of newspaper to guest rooms in April 2009. This time, Marriott became the first hotel chain that ceased such service.

Marriott made the decision because the hotel chain had observed a decrease of 25% of guest demand for newspaper. If guests would like to read newspaper, however, they may choose to “opt-in” the auto delivery options.

I believe that “opt-in” is a very smart approach to ease the anger from some guests about the newspaper fee. When more people seek information and/or read news updates on the internet or smart phones, traditional printed media, like newspaper, have become less important to today’s travelers. So, what do you think of the future for newspaper in hotels?

Relevant discussion:
What Is the Future of Hotel Minibars?
When Will Full Service Hotels Offer Free WiFi Service?

Comments

  1. Personally, I believe that the Hilton Hotel Corporation is completely wrong for charging guests for taking the newspapers that were placed in front of their hotel room doors. I would never have thought that I would be charged for the paper because at most hotels the newspaper is complementary. It is definitely sneaky that the charge is not explained nor shown to guests. And to be honest, no one reads the small print. It is not a fair practice and is not morally correct. Hilton Hotels are world renowned for their guest services and to have a major lawsuit in the works because they run a newspaper scam just proves that they do not have their best interests for their guests, but solely to gain more money. Yes, the seventy-five cents does not seem like an extreme charge for a newspaper, but the point is that they were openly taking advantage of their guests.

    I completely agree with Marriot's decision to offer the "opt-in" program for their newspaper distribution. Many guests are national and international travelers and would enjoy to be updated daily on the news while away on their business or leisure trips. The ability to opt to have the newspaper delivered to in front of the door in the morning is something that would definitely be of use to them. But to those who are not newspaper readers they are able to opt out of receiving the paper and out of receiving the charge. This allows for the guests to feel as if their needs are being put forth before the hotels money needs. They appreciate that their preferences are being accounted for and they know that they are not being schemed out of their money.

    In conclusion, I do not believe that there is going to be an end to the practice of giving newspapers to hotel guests. With technological advances becoming more and more dependent for people, I think that hotels will adjust to the changes and make new standards for certain guest amenities. The newspaper will never completely removed from hotels because people simply love to read it. The smell and feel of a real newspaper is irreplaceable. Even if smart-phones and computers allow for quicker and easier methods to get the news, the simple paper newspaper is preferred to most. Marriot has the right idea by offering a new method to receiving or not receiving the newspaper in the morning and I believe many other chains of hotels will follow in those adjustments. No hotel will want to be put in Hilton's position now. Isn't it silly that they tried to outsmart their guests to gain seventy-five cents? Hopefully, they will set an example to other hotels that they won't get away with the unlawful scamming of their guests.

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  2. I believe that Hilton Hotels charging their guests unknowingly for picking up newspapers is completely wrong and an extremely negative business move. I feel as though this would lead current Hilton customers to question what else this hotel was scamming them out of. This would also, in my opinion, lead potential customers away from using Hilton brands.

    I feel as though Marriott was very wise in deciding to use the opt-in method for newspapers. I feel as though it was smart to do this because most individuals stream the news directly from their laptops or smart phones nowadays, however, if they do want that physical piece of paper, they have the option to do so. Marriott is providing their customers with the best of both worlds in regards to newspapers.

    Lastly, I definitely believe that newspapers and other written news is definitely being phased out of society today. Individuals have their own methods of receiving the news in a more simple and fast way with smart phone apps and internet. Hotels can adapt to these changes and have done so by providing wi-fi in rooms and other methods.

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  3. I feel as though the Hilton hotels charging their customers unknowingly for these newspapers is completely wrong and a terrible business move. It will lead customers to question what else they are being tricked about.

    I feel as though Marriott making this "opt-in" method prominent was a very good idea. This will allow those customers who still want a physical newspaper to have this opportunity while allowing those who have smart phones or laptops to avoid unnecessary fees.

    I think that the future of newspapers in hotels is slowly diminishing. With the use of smart phones and laptops there is no need for individuals to have a physical newspaper, unless that is their preference.

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    Replies
    1. Not sure if you are asking me a real question here. I am using Blogspot, which is affiliated with Google. I also use WordPress for another blog, but I like Blogspot better because it makes it easier to embed video --- however, people from mainland China do not have the access to Blogspot but to WordPress.

      When you visit WordPress.com or Blogspot.com (or Google these two domain), you shall be able to find some tips of blogging on their site. They are very helpful in educating new bloggers. I learned everything by my own. Sometimes, we just have to do it. It will turn out just fine.

      Good luck with blogging, Nireshea. Look forward to reading more of your comments.

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  6. Howdy! This is kind of off topic but I need some guidance from an established blog. Is it difficult to set up your own blog? I’m not very techincal but I can figure things out pretty quick. I’m thinking about setting up my own but I’m not sure where to start. Do you have any tips or suggestions? With thanks Bespoke party indian style suit

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