It might be one of the nation’s favourite hotel chains, but Premier Inn was charging customers too much for phone calls, until we stepped in. Have you spotted a travel firm promoting pricey numbers to customers?
Premier Inn was pushing customers who already had a booking to a high-rate number.
In a win for our Costly Calls campaign, high-rate phone numbers for customer service were made illegal in June 2014 by the Consumer Rights Directive. This states that calls to firms about existing contracts shouldn’t cost more than the basic rate.
When we made a test booking with Premier Inn, we found that the only numbers given in our confirmation email were all 0871 – costing 10p per minute plus network extras – rather than cheaper alternatives.
Its website displays an 0871 number for new bookings, and a cheaper basic-rate number for calls about existing reservations. But the email confirmation only lists the high-rate number.
Premium Inn changes number
After our intervention, Premier Inn said it would be removing the 0871 number from emails and adding a basic-rate 03 number instead. It also plans to add 03 numbers for hotels to the emails.
If you’re looking for a basic-rate number to call a company on, try saynoto0870.com. And if you see a travel firm advertising costly numbers to those who already have bookings, tell us below.