|By John G. Edwards, Las Vegas Review-Journal|
Knight Ridder/Tribune Business News
Mar. 5, 2005 - A local lawyer has filed a lawsuit against Vegas.com and the Greenspun Corp., alleging that the Vegas.com Web site makes false and fraudulent statements about the prices of hotel rooms it books in Las Vegas.
Vegas.com referred calls to its president, Howard Lefkowitz, who couldn't be reached for comment.
The lawsuit by Jeffrey Pitegoff claims the site violates the Nevada Consumer Fraud Act, negligently misrepresents its room prices and breaches contracts with consumers.
The Web site says it offers the lowest hotel room rates in Las Vegas, although Pitegoff says in his lawsuit that lower rates are available.
"When consumers book a room at Vegas.com, they are automatically charged, in addition to the 'room rate,' a single nonitemized charge called 'Taxes & Fees,' " which is not hotel-related,the lawsuit says.
The Wall Street Journal Sunday, which appears each Sunday in the Review-Journal, recently warned consumers about fees and taxes at travel Web sites.
The newspaper said it checked five booking sites for five nights at Bellagio in March. Vegas.com was the highest at $1,870, or $82 more than the lowest, Orbitz.com, the paper reported.
"The add-ons to the room rate were largely to blame" for the price disparity, the newspaper explained.
The lawsuit says the Greenspun Corp. "approves and is involved in the use of its name on the Vegas.com Web site as an inducement to consumers."
Richard Shew of Salt Lake County, Utah, is the named plaintiff in the lawsuit, but the Las Vegas lawyer is seeking class action certification for the lawsuit so he also can represent other individuals in the lawsuit against Vegas.com. The lawsuit seeks damages exceeding $10,000.
To see more of the Las Vegas Review-Journal, or to subscribe to the newspaper, go to http://www.lvrj.com.
Copyright (c) 2005, Las Vegas Review-Journal
Distributed by Knight Ridder/Tribune Business News. For information on republishing this content, contact us at (800) 661-2511 (U.S.), (213) 237-4914 (worldwide), fax (213) 237-6515, or e-mail email@example.com. ORBZ,