AUSTIN, Texas — Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton has filed a lawsuit against the Hilton hotel chain for what he says are misleading claims about the true costs of hotel rooms in violation of Texas consumer protection laws.
The lawsuit follows a similar lawsuit Paxton filed earlier this month against Hyatt Hotels and a settlement with Marriott International.
In a release, Paxton said Hilton has a “troubling” pattern of forcing mandatory fees onto its customers. He said consumers are often not fully made aware of these fees or, in some instances, they are shown the fees in ways that would be difficult to notice.
“Many major hotel chains, including Hilton, have been deceiving their customers for far too long,” Paxton said. “I warned these companies they would face consequences for this behavior, and Texas has delivered aggressive action to protect consumers, promote price transparency in the hotel and travel industries, and ensure that companies violating our laws are held responsible for misleading the public.”
The lawsuit claims Hilton misleadingly charges consumers higher rates than initially advertised. Paxton’s lawsuit claims the services purportedly funded by the fees “are often complimentary or included in the room rate at other non-resort locations.”
“Hilton has further compounded the illegal deception by changing the room rates during checkout and charging nominal mandatory fees twice – first as a ‘fee’ and then as a ‘tax,’ amounting in the aggregate to millions of dollars in fraudulent charges,” the Office of the Texas Attorney General said.
The full lawsuit can be read on the Texas attorney general’s website.