Hotels Are Making Serious Money Off WiFi Fees And Other Enraging News This Week
There's even more hotel news flying around this week and we don't have time to give each and every story the love and attention it may deserve, so you will have to settle for some news briefs.
· Hotels to Rake in $2 Billion in Fees: The next time you find yourself shelling out money for WiFi or to use the fitness center access during your hotel stay, remember, it's ok to be really pissed off about it. That's because hotels are set to take in about $2 billion in fees this year. That's up 5.4 percent from last year, according to the Tisch Center at New York University. While the annual take-in from fees isn't expected to keep growing, that's still a crazy high number. All the more reason to raise a fuss if that WiFi connection shorts out. Grrr.
· Seriously Sick at The JW Marriott Chicago: The new-ish JW Marriott Chicago is under investigation as a total of seven people who stayed at the hotel this summer have contracted the sometimes deadly Legionnaires’ disease which is found in water. The Chicago Tribune reports that the hotel has drained its pool, hot tub and fountain and even closed part of its spa. We're guessing that chlorine-free pool might not have been such a good idea after all. While the city's health department said there is "no ongoing health risk at the hotel", the JW Marriott is still working to alert the 8,500 guests who stayed at the hotel between July 16 and Aug. 15. Ugh. UPDATE: Two people have died from the outbreak.
· TripAdvisor Can Keep On Keeping On With Its "Dirtiest" List: A judge has ruled that TripAdvisor's annual "Dirtiest Hotels" list did not create defamation liability, essentially meaning that TripAdvisor (and other sites that take user-generated info and create Best and Worst lists) can keep on publishing this list without fear of being sued. Sorry, Grand Resort in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee, you're just going to have to clean yourself up.
· We Remind You, Again, Not to Do Important Business on a Public Hotel Computer: USA Today takes a closer look at a ComputerWorld article on those hotel lobby computers. Specifically, how corporate "secrets" from business traveler guests can end up on the hotel's computer system which can then be accessed by anyone who works at the hotel. Um, yeah, we think you should probably not access sensitive work information on a hotel lobby computer. Check yourself before you wreck yourself!