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Consumer Advocacy & Representation

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Hawaii
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Consumer Advocacy & Representation

geoffboxer,

I've seen hotel reviews on trip advisor that read like horror stories.

Is there a department of government (or regional department of commerce) in The Netherlands where people can lodge complaints about shady business practices, substandard service, or unhealthy (or even dangerous) living conditions in these hotels?

In the US, there are a number of different private sector, and public sector agencies that can respond to such complaint.

Is there any such thing in The Netherlands?

Hawaii
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1. Re: Consumer Advocacy & Representation

Is there no one in Amsterdam who has knowledge of this?

Hilversum, The...
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2. Re: Consumer Advocacy & Representation

yes there is its cold www.warenwet.nl

its also listed in the phonebook

Hawaii
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3. Re: Consumer Advocacy & Representation

That's a dutch website. I don't speak dutch.

Is it something like a Dutch Better Business Bureau, or Chamber of Commerce?

...or is it a government agency like the Dept. of Commerce & Consummer Affairs?

Hoofddorp, The...
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4. Re: Consumer Advocacy & Representation

Hi there.

This is a question that might require some additional explaining. First of all, complaints of course to be directed to hotels directly and give them the chance to solve things.

Then, to be brief, there are a few organisations that come to mind.

First of all: ANWB. This is a dutch sort of AAA.

They have a (ANWB standard) hotelclassification that is recognized throughout the country. Indications are made by blue shields on the front door with the number of stars. If complaints are on one of these hotels, you can contact them if hotel do not cooperate in solutions. If you are a ANWB member (or AAA member, possibly but I don't know for sure) you might contact them, to see if they can intervere

I have not yet found an english translation, but you can start here:

anwb.nl/published/anwbcms/content/pagina/ove…

Another one is Bedrijfschap Horeca.

They are located in Zoetermeer, google some and you will find out. They are responsable for another dutch hotel classification system, the so called NHC. They will not intervere, but they can take measures in the hotelclassification of that particular hotel, they will however only take complaints that have been directed to the hotel directly in the first place and no anonymous ones by the way.

If the problem is licences, hygene and such, then check out this one:

http://www.voedingscentrum.nl/voedingscentrum/Public/Statisch/English+summary/

Feel free to enquire after the specifics.

Regards

Marcel

Hawaii
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5. Re: Consumer Advocacy & Representation

Thanks, Marcel.

Sure, try to handle it through hotel first, but assuming that fails where would visitors go to bring attention to their mistreatment?

I'm looking for government agencies that are responsible for oversight and regulation of hotels, where tourists can lodge complaints and expect that government will investigate?

If a hotel deliberately misrepresents itself, overcharges customers, has hazardous conditions that could cause illness or injury; where would tourists go to lodge complaint?

Surely, there must be some branch of government responsible investigating such matters.

The last link you posted is only applicable only to food products.

Hawaii
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6. Re: Consumer Advocacy & Representation

Here's an example that I just posted in the Hawaii Forum of Trip advisor.

I''m looking for someone from Amsterdam or anywhere in the Netherlands to post simmilar information:

---------------------------------

If you should have a bad experience at a hotel, try to work it out with the hotel staff & management first.

BUT, if you should visit any hotel in the Islands and find yourself the victim of bad business practices, or exposed to hazardous/unsafe conditions, here are some important numbers to remember.

DO NOT CALL these numbers for MINOR complaints: "maid was rude, room service was slow, wake-up call came too early, etc."

For bad business practices (overcharging, over booking, switching room reservations, etc.) or exposure to unsafe conditions at hotel or restaurants, call,

1.) Hawaii Department of Commerce & Consumer Affairs,

.......Office of Consumer Protection: .................(808)587-3222

For unsanitary conditions that can affect health (mold, mildew) or potential health hazards (exposure to toxins, etc) call

2.) Hawaii State Department of Health ............ (808)526-5000

If your situation warrants it, the state will assign an investigator to look into your complaint.

You can also call the Hawaii Chamber of Commerce, and the Hawaii Better Business Bureau, but they are private agencies that do not have the oversight authority that the State does.

FOR MINOR COMPLAINTS call:

1.) Hawaii Better Business Bureau (808)536-6956

2.) Hawaii Chamber of Commerce (808)545-4300

While your complaint might not be severe enough to require investigation, the BBB can log the complaint and use is to compile a business profile that consumers can access to check the hotels' business/service reputation.

So, if your hotel turns a deaf ear to your complaints, these agencies provide you with some measure of recourse.

Hopefully, you will not need to use them

Hoofddorp, The...
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7. Re: Consumer Advocacy & Representation

Hi there.

To be honest, I've never heard of any governmental agency as such, except the ones I mentioned which are indeed not governmental....

And by the way, the Voedingscentrum might not be the most correct institution, but if they cannot assist, they will surely know where to go on hygene issues and unhealthy situations in hotels and related business..

It is all a matter of "what is the problem", does it have to do with liscences, hygene, personal complaint, illigal activities, whatever, we have organisations for all of this, but not just governmentally appointed for the whole area .......

Regards

Marcel

Hawaii
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8. Re: Consumer Advocacy & Representation

Thanks again Marcel.

I really appreciate your effort.

I hope, now, you can see the kind of information that I'm looking for, and the motive behind it.

There's got to be someplace where people can refer such complaint. Without some sort of regulating authority in Hollands' visitor industry, it's like putting out a welcome matt for disaster; a P/R nightmare just waiting to happen. Someone knows. I'm sure.

You can't have that volume of tourism and NOT have some kind of government oversight that hotels are answerable to.

I'm confident that there IS something. It's just a matter of time before it is posted here.

Hoofddorp, The...
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9. Re: Consumer Advocacy & Representation

it will surely be interesting to know indeed....

Let's just wait and see....

Doetinchem, The...
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10. Re: Consumer Advocacy & Representation

Sorry, but I think you are being quite hypo about this.

In the Netherlands, hotels have fixed rates, thousands of regulations and laws to stick to and still you are afraid they will overcharge you and have you eat bad food...

As far as I know, there is not central "hotel police" or any other governmental office to go to, except perhaps the regular police. Complaints should be filed to the hotel itself or to the company you booked your hotel with (or the tourist bureau might be able to help you out)

I think you should take the fact that there is no central complaints office as a good thing. It simply is not necessary!

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