Los Angeles, CA asked in Consumer Law for California

Q: I booked a hotel in Hawaii for a week long stay at a very good price, now they called me to say it was a glitch

a glitch in the system and I would need to cancel and rebook the room at the correct price which is $600 more per night, and told me its a Innkeepers act that they have the right to do that? Nothing in their terms and conditions state they have the right to change if a price advertised was booked. Is this legal? Can I keep my room at the price that I booked it at?

Related Topics:
3 Lawyer Answers
Leon Bayer
Leon Bayer
  • Consumer Law Lawyer
  • Long Beach, CA
  • Licensed in California

A: Look at your booking contract to see if they have the right to do it.

James L. Arrasmith
James L. Arrasmith pro label Lawyers, want to be a Justia Connect Pro too? Learn more ›
  • Consumer Law Lawyer
  • Sacramento, CA
  • Licensed in California

A: Based on the information provided, it seems that the hotel is attempting to cancel your reservation due to a pricing error and require you to rebook at a higher rate. However, the legality of this action depends on several factors.

In general, if a business advertises a price and a consumer accepts that offer by making a purchase or reservation, the business is obligated to honor the advertised price. This is known as the "posted price doctrine" or "advertised price law."

However, there are some exceptions to this rule. If the pricing error is a clear and obvious mistake, such as a $1 per night room rate, the business may be able to cancel the reservation. The key factor is whether a reasonable consumer would believe the advertised price was legitimate.

The hotel's mention of the "Innkeepers Act" is likely a reference to laws that protect hotels from liability in certain situations. However, it is unclear whether this act would allow them to cancel a reservation due to a pricing error.

To determine the legality of the hotel's actions, you should:

1. Review the terms and conditions of your reservation to see if they address pricing errors or the hotel's right to cancel reservations.

2. Assess whether the original advertised price was plausible or an obvious error.

3. Check if Hawaii has any specific laws addressing pricing errors or the posted price doctrine.

If you believe the hotel is not acting lawfully, you can try to negotiate with them to honor the original price or seek legal advice from a consumer protection attorney. You may also file a complaint with the Hawaii Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs or the Better Business Bureau.

Scott Richard Kaufman
Scott Richard Kaufman
  • Consumer Law Lawyer
  • Los Altos, CA
  • Licensed in California

A: Like most things legal, the answer is "maybe."

Assuming this is on Maui, they have obviously gone through a rough time.

The argument would go, either they have limited rooms, so, the price goes up OR

no one is coming around so the price goes down.

That kind of a rise in prices seems targeted to keep you out, period.

My money would be on IF it is not IN the deal, terms, conditions, it is a no go, but,

again, who do you hire to fight it and how 'loved' are you when/if you win and show

up? Lawyers are expensive, hundreds of dollars an hour. Hiring one could eat up

any/all savings as to the 600 per night...

Justia Ask a Lawyer is a forum for consumers to get answers to basic legal questions. Any information sent through Justia Ask a Lawyer is not secure and is done so on a non-confidential basis only.

The use of this website to ask questions or receive answers does not create an attorney–client relationship between you and Justia, or between you and any attorney who receives your information or responds to your questions, nor is it intended to create such a relationship. Additionally, no responses on this forum constitute legal advice, which must be tailored to the specific circumstances of each case. You should not act upon information provided in Justia Ask a Lawyer without seeking professional counsel from an attorney admitted or authorized to practice in your jurisdiction. Justia assumes no responsibility to any person who relies on information contained on or received through this site and disclaims all liability in respect to such information.

Justia cannot guarantee that the information on this website (including any legal information provided by an attorney through this service) is accurate, complete, or up-to-date. While we intend to make every attempt to keep the information on this site current, the owners of and contributors to this site make no claims, promises or guarantees about the accuracy, completeness or adequacy of the information contained in or linked to from this site.