News for the Hospitality Executive
YONKERS, N.Y., May 24, 2012 -- In time for the summer travel season, Consumer Reports today announced Ratings of 44 of the nation's biggest hotel chains based on a survey of more than 22,000 readers. Econo Lodge and Americas Best Value Inn were rated among the worst hotel chains. Respondents handed them low scores for attributes like value, upkeep, comfort and service. Microtel Inn & Suites by Wyndham was the highest-rated of the budget hotels, according the Consumer Reports survey.
The report is available online now at www.ConsumerReports.org and in the July 2012 issue of Consumer Reports, which goes on sale Tuesday, June 5.
The Ritz-Carlton bested all other luxury hotels in Consumer Reports' Ratings, earning top marks from survey respondents across the board. However, less ostentatious chains like Westin, Hyatt and Embassy Suites Hotels were near the top of the Ratings, receiving Excellent or Very Good scores on all attributes. Consumer Reports notes that while Ritz-style marble bathtubs might be rare, chains are catching up on long-delayed improvements, freshening rooms, replacing worn mattresses and tattered wallpaper, and updating furnishings.
"No one would ever confuse Microtel Inn & Suites for the Ritz, but each does a great job of pleasing its particular customers," said Tod Marks, Senior Editor, Consumer Reports. "Satisfaction depends on what you're seeking. And our survey clearly shows that across all price points, there are superb hotel choices to fit any guest's needs."
Overall, hotels have improved, according to the Consumer Reports survey. Fifty-three percent of respondents said their check-in and checkout process was excellent, up from 42 percent in 2006. Additionally, 44 percent rated their service as excellent and 43 percent said the same for upkeep – both up 7 percentage points respectively from 2006. On the flip side, 27 percent of respondents had at least one complaint during their stay, such as unattractive beds and outdated decor.
Guide to a great rate
This year, an overnight stay is expected to cost an average of $107, up 5 percent from 2011, according to lodging analyst PricewaterhouseCoopers. To help travelers get the best possible deal on their lodging expenses, Consumer Reports has come up with the following techniques:
The Consumer Reports National Research Center's 2011 Annual Questionnaire included a section asking subscribers about their recent visits to national hotel (and motel) chains. Respondents reported on stays that took place from January 1, 2010 through June 2011.
Consumer Reports is the world's largest independent product-testing organization. Using its more than 50 labs, auto test center, and survey research center, the nonprofit rates thousands of products and services annually. Founded in 1936, Consumer Reports has over 8 million subscribers to its magazine, website and other publications. Its advocacy division, Consumers Union, works for health reform, food and product safety, financial reform, and other consumer issues in Washington, D.C., the states, and in the marketplace.
C. Matt Fields
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