It seems like the season (no pun intended) for whacky travel news. When Indian actor Rahul Bose was charged $6 for 2 bananas, the story immediately went viral. Apparently, among the various crazy travel stories this summer, this definitely wasn’t the last. That time it was JW Marriott, now it’s Four Seasons in the news.
Four Seasons Mumbai
The Four Seasons brand is one of the most expensive luxury hotel brands around the world. It’s not unexpected to see them charge exorbitant prices for items on property. However, this story really went viral after the person who experienced this posted about it on Twitter. He fittingly tagged actor Rahul Bose in this tweet. 😀
Author Kartik Dhar, who experienced this, tagged actor Rahul Bose and asked him in Hindi on Twitter: “Hey Bro, should we protest?”. Other Twitter users had a field day with the story. Twitter users started tweeting funny reasons for the $24 charge. One joked by saying that the chicken must’ve belonged to a very rich family.
The Four Seasons in Mumbai is located in a part of the city which is considered to be upscale and generally expensive. Having dined at many restaurants around the city, it’s not at all surprising that such pricing showed up on Dhar’s bill.
The Pundit’s Mantra
When you travel often, you’re always going to run into situations when you see some insane pricing. Be it Maldives or Bora Bora, hotels tend to price based on their profitability requirements. I always make it a point to check the pricing before purchasing it at any hotel.
In this case, I don’t really think it should be a debate about whether the hotel has a right to charge the price they charged. Four Seasons is an upscale brand. So it’s not surprising that Four Seasons priced something in this way. It’s pretty reasonable to understand that the $24 charge shocked Dhar. However, I don’t really think there’s much more to the story than that.
Twitter can be a funny animal. People can outrage and suddenly you have a mountain out of a molehill. It will be interesting to see how they tackle this sudden spike in brand mentions and Twitter outrage.
We haven’t heard a response from Four Seasons yet. So we don’t really know what exactly transpired beyond the details Dhar tweeted. Was the pricing opaque to start with? Was the pricing deceptive in any ways? Did the hotel break any laws?