Members of the Hotel Booking Agents Association slammed hotels’ practice of including non-VAT elements in their day delegate rates (DDR). The association’s quarterly meeting in Ascot on 12 March in Ascot heard agents claim the technique allowed hotels to maximise their yield management. However, the agents claim, longer term it makes rates more expensive for the end user.
Operations Director for Right Location Corporate Services, Rebecca Forbes, says venues should offer a transparent pricing structure, which should clearly show any elements of day rates or 24 hour conference package rates which are VAT exempt.
“It is becoming increasingly common for venues to maximise their revenue by quoting a VAT inclusive rates and then allocating up to 33 per cent of a package price to room hire which is VAT exempt. This can produce some nasty surprises for a corporate client who is expecting to reclaim the VAT and assumes all rates quoted to be fully VATable.”
Steve Ockerby, Chairman of the HBAA says: “As an association of booking agents we, and our corporate clients, find unacceptable the way that some UK hotels process their charges. One of our main objectives is to promote best practice and professionalism in the industry and we see hotels and venues following this pricing technique as detrimental in the battle for transparency in our industry.”