Where Do the Hotel Chains Stand on Hurricane Evacuees?

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When you take in hurricane evacuees as paying guests, when do you make the decision to make a guest leave to honor a previously made reservation?

When you take in evacuees as paying guests, how do you make the decision to make a guest leave for a previously made reservation?

Have you ever had so much fun on a trip that you called the front desk to stay another night at the hotel only to have your request turned down because they were full with other guests? It does happen. Hotels play the delicate balancing act of ushering guests in and out all the time, without much room for error. Places like Disney World or almost the whole town of Las Vegas can go from dead to maximum occupancy in a day. Even the perfect paying guest can be forced to leave their room for another reservation with a higher or lower rate. That is normal business.

So does that apply to hurricane evacuees who may have lost everything and are struggling to pay their hotel bill? What about the business customer who has an important meeting, always stays at a particular hotel and nothing else is available at this late date? He or she may also spend money on those expensive hotel phone calls, food, room service and incidentals while the evacuees save every dime and use more of the hotels utilities 24 hours a day.

"It's a tough call asking evacuees to leave so it can honor other reservations and a hotel may lose either way," says Adam Longfellow of AllStays.com (http://www.allstays.com), a lodging website that is trying to keep up with what hotels are taking reservations and which are not. "As long as they don't price gouge, we can sympathize with both sides of a issue that blurs the lines of morality and big business."

So here is the bad publicity for kicking out hurricane evacuees. And if they let them stay? They get bad publicity in business circles and anger big-spending repeat customers who travel for business. If a hotel does not honor your reservation and leaves you out in the cold, would you go back to them later on? Probably not. If a hotel lets you stay as an evacuee in what may be the hardest time of your life, would you go back later on, perhaps to relive those memorable days? Probably not.

In the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, the governor of Louisiana issued an executive order for hotels not to displace a evacuee who is guaranteeing payment. This is also an executive order for hotels not to honor reservations, something which they would probably be penalized for under other circumstances.

For example, Holiday Inn and Choice Hotels International, which markets the brands of Clarion, Comfort Suites, Econo Lodge, Mainstay, Quality and Sleep Inns, are encouraging their franchises to give guest priority to evacuees and other emergency workers.

Hotels that closed for a couple weeks with minor damage just may be the luckiest ones.

AllStays.com, online since 2000 and based in Arizona (US), lists all kinds of lodging, from bed & breakfasts to yoga retreats and luxury hotels, from primitive campgrounds to motels, haunted hotels and spa resorts. AllStays also links directly to official websites to make sure you have the real scoop on the latest and most accurate information from around the world.

Research, Browse, and book online to stay anywhere on Earth. http://www.allstays.com


8824 Ironwood Drive

Kingman, AZ 86401

Phone (928) 727-1312


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Adam Longfellow
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