Disgruntled holidaymakers misled by vouchers
Big City Promotions has been accused by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) of advertising misleading information in its holiday accommodation vouchers.
Big City Promotions, a distributor of holiday vouchers Australia-wide, has been accused of not complying with the pricing stipulations of the Trade Practices Act 1974. Between July 2009 and July 2010, Big City Promotions, sent a one page advert to numerous businesses which promoted holiday accommodation at a number of hotels in Australia, New Zealand, Bali, Thailand, Europe, USA, Hong Kong, Egypt, India and Fiji. The voucher advertised holiday accommodation on a twin share basis at the cost of $33 per person per night.
The main accusation lies in the fact that Big City Promotions failed to mention in its advert that in order to purchase the accommodation at the advertised rate, customers also had to attend a resort sales presentation when staying at the hotel and pay a $99 booking fee to receive the discounted offer.
In all future adverts, Big City Promotions has agreed to include a single price payable by the customer (including any fees), as well as a full disclosure of any conditions which need to be met by the customer.
A corrective notice will also be sent by Big City Promotions to all of its customers. It will also offer a refund to those affected.
The component pricing laws have been in place for more than 12 months. Businesses that do not comply with the requirement to prominently specify a single price for their goods or services risk enforcement action being taken against them by the ACCC, ACCC chairman Graeme Samuel said.