Justice Ministry Asks Brazil Hotels To Explain Price Hikes For World Cup
Brazil's justice ministry "is asking the main hotel chains in the country to explain the high prices being charged for rooms during the 2014 World Cup," according to the AP. The request comes after several complaints from consumer advocates and a study by the country's tourism board "which showed that exorbitant prices will be charged during the monthlong tournament next year." Among the companies notified by the ministry's consumer rights secretariat "are Accor, Choice, Louvre, Blue Tree, Nacional Inn, Wyndham, IHG and Bourbon." The Brazilian Association of the Hotel Industry "also was notified." National Consumer Protection Secretariat consumer defense Dir Amaury Oliva said, "Tourists are consumers which require special protection because they are outside of their city or country." The ministry said that "it wants the hotel chains to provide the average rates charged in the past during other high-demand events in the 12 World Cup host cities, so they can be compared to the prices for the tournament." Although price increases are expected during special events such as the World Cup, officials suspect that "the chains might be overcharging more than usual this time" (AP, 11/9).