The Caterer

ASA slams Premier Inn ad as misleading

03 August 2009
ASA slams Premier Inn ad as misleading

A Premier Inn advert has been slammed as misleading by the Advertising Standards Authority.

The advertising watchdog ruled the chain's ‘Everything you'd expect at a four star hotel. At a Budget Price' press advert breached truthfulness clauses and said it should not appear again in its current form.

The national press ad detailed a choice of 570 UK hotels and included features such as ‘all you can eat cooked breakfast', ‘Wi-Fi access and digital TV' and ‘comfy beds and spacious rooms' with ticks next to them.

Rooms from £50 per night were also advertised with the small print stating additional charges for breakfast and Wi-Fi.

However, the ASA upheld seven complaints that the table of features was misleading.

"We noted that each feature on the list was ticked and considered the combination of the checklist features and the positive tick would suggest to customers that each listed feature was standard in Premier Inn Hotel Rooms," it stated.

"We considered that the prominence of the £50, combined with the ticked checklist of features, gave a strong visual impression that all the features listed were included in a standard 350 price."

The ASA also suggested the ‘everything you'd expect at a four star hotel' claim was misleading because the chain was unlikely to offer the same range of facilities and services as most four star hotels.

A Premier Inn spokesperson said: "Premier Inn are obviously disappointed with the ruling on the campaign which ended in May, a campaign which received just eight complaints. However we have taken the ASA's comments into account for communications promoting our £29 Premier Offer."

By Helen Gilbert

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