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Travel Tip: Posting Negative Reviews of Hotels

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Many of you have seen hotels offer an ethically questionable bonus to guests who post a positive online review of their property.

But what happens when you post a negative review?

For one guest, the hotel promptly charged her debit card a $350 fine for damages.

The hotel, the Abbey Inn and Suites in Indiana, claimed it was perfectly legal to do so. Really?

The hotel posts this warning on its website: “if any guest disparages us in any way, we will be entitled to charge their credit card an additional $350 in damages.”

The Indiana Attorney General disagreed and is now suing the hotel, arguing it violated the states’ deceptive consumer sales act.

The hotel itself is now permanently closed.

No matter how the case is resolved, it’s important to note that if you have a problem with a hotel, first bring it to their attention. If they remedy it, then fine.

If they don’t, you have rights. You can respond with your credit card, as well as in writing your online review.

Remember, there’s a huge difference between a factual, negative review and libel.

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