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Myanmar tour agents blast 'greedy' hotels

Myanmar tour agents blast 'greedy' hotels

Tour operators and foreign-owned hotels are in a stand-off over soaring hotel rates that sky-rocketed almost 300 per cent and threaten the country’s long-term tourism prospects.

By TTR Weekly

Saturday 19 May 2012, 02:09PM

The initial report on the dispute was reported by the Myanmar Times, but there has been evidence for some time, since the country started to open to investors, that hotels were taking advantage and trebling rates.

Representatives of Yangon’s foreign-owned hotel attended a meeting chaired by the Myanmar Hotels and Tourism deputy minister, U Htay Aung, but it ended with no conclusion.

Room rate for international standard hotels in Yangon have shot up by around 300 per cent, according to tour operators who monitor net rates they are given on volume business.

There are just too many business visitors flocking to the country in a kind of gold rush to grab business opportunities as the country’s opens to democracy and sanctions are removed by the international community.

It has sparked off a reaction by hotels in Yangon, mostly owned by foreign companies. They are refusing to honour contracted rates to tour operators based on an estimated production of bookings.

La Boucherie

Tour operators identified what they called the offenders, who they alleged failed to honour contracted rates. They are: Traders Hotel Yangon, Sedona Hotel Yangon, Parkroyal Yangon Hotel and Chatrium Hotel Yangon.

Tour operators claim they signed annual contracts on fixed rates based on volume and hotels are now cancelling them or demanding tour operators accept a much higher rate.

“You can raise the price when negotiating a contract, but don’t change the contract price later on.

“In future, Myanmar will become a great tourist destination so we should cooperate and negotiate with each other now on these matters” said Tour Mandalay chairman, U Khin Zaw.

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