THE SENATE

S.B. NO.

2229

THIRTIETH LEGISLATURE, 2020

 

STATE OF HAWAII

 

 

 

 

 

 

A BILL FOR AN ACT

 

 

Relating to transient accommodations.

 

 

BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF HAWAII:

 


SECTION 1. The legislature finds that prices for hotel rooms and other transient accommodations are often advertised at a certain rate and it is not until later in the buying process that the consumer discovers that there are additional mandatory fees that were not included in the advertised room rate. These mandatory fees are sometimes called resort fees, cleaning fees, or facility fees and are in addition to advertised room rates. Such fees are becoming more commonplace as the number of places that charge them continues to rise.

The legislature notes that the Federal Trade Commission has the authority under section 5 of the Federal Trade Commission Act to regulate unfair or deceptive acts that impact commerce. In 2012 and 2013, the Federal Trade Commission sent warning letters to thirty-five hotel operators and eleven online travel agents, stating that mandatory resort fees could confuse consumers. Further, in 2017, an economist at the Federal Trade Commission published an issue paper that found that requiring consumers to click through additional webpages to see a hotel's true price may result in consumers making an incomplete or less informed decision. The legislature finds that advertising that does not reflect the actual cost of a stay at a hotel and other transient accommodations is unfair and deceptive.

The purpose of this Act is to prohibit the unfair and deceptive advertising of rates for transient accommodations by requiring the advertised rate for such accommodations to include all mandatory fees.

SECTION 2. Chapter 481B, Hawaii Revised Statutes, is amended by adding a new section to part I to be appropriately designated and to read as follows:

"481B-   Advertising of transient accommodations rates. (a) All advertisements of rates for transient accommodations shall include in the advertised rate all mandatory fees, including resort fees, cleaning fees, and facility fees, and excluding those imposed by the State or county.

(b) As used in this section, "transient accommodations" and "resort fee" shall have the same meaning as defined in section 237D-1."

SECTION 3. This Act does not affect rights and duties that matured, penalties that were incurred, and proceedings that were begun before its effective date.

SECTION 4. New statutory material is underscored.

SECTION 5. This Act shall take effect upon its approval.

 

INTRODUCED BY:

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Report Title:

Unfair and Deceptive Practices; Transient Accommodations; Rates; Mandatory Fees

 

Description:

Requires that advertisements for rates for transient accommodations include all mandatory fees, except for taxes imposed by the State or county.

 

 

 

The summary description of legislation appearing on this page is for informational purposes only and is not legislation or evidence of legislative intent.