Fianna Fáil Spokesperson on Tourism Timmy Dooley TD has criticised Dublin hotels which have hiked up their room rates ahead of the Web Summit next week. Many hotels will be at full capacity as thousands of delegates arrive into the city for the three day event.
Deputy Dooley commented, “While I appreciate that hotels have come through a tough time, visitor numbers are up and the 9% VAT rate has been maintained. Despite this, some hotels have doubled and even tripled their prices for the duration of the conference. This move is cynical and short-sighted and has the potential to damage all the progress that has been made in the sector over the past number of years.
“These price hikes do nothing to uphold Ireland’s reputation as a welcoming and friendly country, and serve as a slap in the face to the hundreds of other hotels and guesthouses across the city, which have maintained their normal rates.
“It is important that while hotels are able to maximise tourism opportunities, it is important that they do not exploit the situation by engaging in price gouging. We have seen this unfair practice emerge for major concerts and football matches, significantly increasing the cost of these events for fans, and in some cases making them inaccessible.
“I’m urging hotels to reconsider this price hike policy. It is a culture within the tourism sector which while driving up profits, undermines the industry. It is essential that Ireland markets itself as a value for money destination and the Web Summit provides Dublin with an opportunity to showcase everything the city has to offer. However, if visitors feel they are being ripped off it will leave a bitter taste in their mouths and may make them think twice about making a return trip or recommending it to their friends and family. If the industry is to continue to perform hotels must ensure that their rates are appropriate and affordable”.