Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Travel agencies warned against assigning star ratings to hotels

Travel agencies warned against assigning star ratings to hotels

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
The Ministry of Tourism has warned some of the world’s online travel agencies who have Cambodia’s hotels rated on their websites without the ministry’s recognition. POST PIX

Travel agencies warned against assigning star ratings to hotels

The Ministry of Tourism has warned international online travel agencies against rating Cambodian hotels prior to the former’s evaluation.

In a statement issued last week, the ministry noted that some hotels have been rated by the online travel agencies – including TripAdvisor, Agoda, Booking.com and Expedia – without the hotels having been evaluated by the ministry itself.

Ministry spokesman Top Sopheak said hotel ratings must be made by the Ministry of Tourism’s expert committees at both the national and sub-national levels.

“Hotel operators setting their own ratings contrary to the [ministry’s principles] will be fined and may have their licences revoked,” said Sopheak.

He said following the statement, violators could face fines of between one and five million riel ($250 and $1,250).

Consumer confidence

Despite the recent surge of new hotels, Sopheak said the number of applications to the ministry for evaluation remains low.

“Setting the number of stars will help boost consumer confidence. Each hotel must comply with the standards approved by the ministry,” he said.

Cambodia Hotel Association president Luu Meng said the announcement is very important for consumer confidence.

He said some hotel owners are unaware of their hotel ratings on the websites and that online travel agencies rated hotels themselves to attract customer bookings via their websites.

“For those hotels not complying with the announcement, the authorities should stop providing them with licences and shut them down,” he said.

A Ministry of Tourism report obtained by The Post on Sunday showed that as of the end of May, Cambodia had a total of 152 hotels accounting for 17,450 rooms. Of those, 36 are five-star hotels, 41 are four-star and 32 are three-star.

Four-star and five-star hotels are mostly located in Siem Reap province and Phnom Penh.

MOST VIEWED

  • Ministry requests school opening

    The Ministry of Education, Youth and Sport on Thursday said it would request a decision from Prime Minister Hun Sen to allow a small number of schools to reopen next month. Ministry spokesman Ros Soveacha said if the request is granted, higher-standard schools will reopen

  • Kingdom eyes India FTA, China deal set for August

    Cambodia is studying the possibility of establishing a bilateral free trade agreement (FTA) with India to open a new market with the second-largest regional economy. This comes as an FTA with China is scheduled to be signed next month while similar negotiations with South Korea

  • Judge lands in court after crashing into alleged thief

    Sen Sok district police on Thursday sent a Koh Kong Provincial Court judge to the Phnom Penh Municipal Court on manslaughter charges after he crashed his car into a woman riding a motorbike on Wednesday, killing her. District police chief Hour Meng Vang told The

  • Preah Vihear court drops charges against villagers

    The Preah Vihear Provincial Court has dropped all charges against eight ethnic Kuoy villagers who were in a land dispute with the Hengfu Group Sugar Industry Co Ltd since 2014. Wednesday’s decision was made by the judge who tried the case on June 10. The eight

  • Gov’t to boost Siem Reap tourism

    The Ministry of Tourism released the results of an inter-ministerial committee meeting concerning Siem Reap province’s Tourism Development Master Plan for 2020-2035 on Wednesday, revealing the government’s plan to improve the overall tourist landscape there. The meeting was attended by Minister of Tourism

  • Residents ordered to remove structures on Phnom Penh’s canal

    Phnom Penh municipal governor Khuong Sreng has ordered authorities to act against the perpetrators who built houses along the Luo 5 canal in Meanchey district. The municipal administration plans to create a committee to solve the matter. The order was given on Wednesday while Sreng led

  • ‘On the offensive’: Cambodia to load up on loans to stimulate economy

    As the dust settles on the economy, Cambodia comes to grips with what needs to be done to turn the economy around, starting with a big shopping list for credit ‘We are going on the offensive,” Vongsey Vissoth, Ministry of Economy and Finance permanent secretary

  • Eighty replacement peacekeepers set for Mali mission despite Covid

    Eighty Cambodian blue helmet soldiers who completed the peacekeeping mission under the UN umbrella in Mali will return to Cambodia on Friday, said the Centre for Peacekeeping Forces spokeswoman Kosal Malida. “To protect their families and communities from the Covid-19 pandemic, the 80 are required to

  • Government set to make up for cancelled April holiday

    The government is set to make up for a five-day Khmer New Year holiday late this month or early next month. The holiday was earlier cancelled due to the onset of Covid-19. The announcement is expected on Friday as the government is studying a range

  • Families told to register for cash handouts

    The government has called on poor families to apply to commune authorities for evaluation to receive financial support during the Covid-19 crisis. A $300 million budget has been planned for implementation within a year. Ministry of Economy and Finance secretary of state Vongsey Visoth said this