A Guideline to Making Your Hotel Website Reservations ADA Accessible

By Christine Samsel Attorney, Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck | June 03, 2018

Co-authored by Jonathan C. Sandler & Nick Santucci, Shareholders, Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck

For the hospitality industry, navigating the maze of complex requirements under the Americans with Disabilities Act ("ADA") can prove to be a daunting task. If a facility does not comply with the ADA, or facets of its operations are not ADA-compliant, the risk of being sued has never been higher. Disabled individuals have been pursuing hospitality companies in court, asserting a variety of claims.

This includes complaints that online reservation systems are non-compliant because, among other things, they do not allow disabled individuals to book accessible rooms; lodging facilities lack a sufficient number of accessible rooms; and lodging facilities fail to properly "hold" accessible rooms for disabled individuals. Some of these claims can be asserted against online booking companies as well. Unlike typical "drive-by lawsuits," where prospective plaintiffs visit facilities and seek out violations, individuals need not even leave their homes to identify these types of potential violations; they need only surf the web.

Following up on our prior article, "The Hospitality Industry is Particularly Susceptible to ADA Website Accessibility Lawsuits " we provide guidance below on ensuring that disabled guests can book accessible rooms online, confirming that the lodging facility offers the correct number of accessible rooms and following proper protocols in releasing accessible rooms to non-disabled patrons.

Ensure That Disabled Guests Can Book Accessible Rooms Online

Does your website allow disabled guests to book accessible rooms online? If not, it should.

Choose a Social Network!

The social network you are looking for is not available.


Hotel Newswire Headlines Feed  

Kurt A. Broadhag
Ashish Gambhir
Janine Roberts
Amy Locke
Arthur Weissman
Kevin Wilhelmsen
Josiah MacKenzie
Dana Kravetz
Clifford Ferrara
Kathleen Pohlid
Coming up in May 2019...

Eco-Friendly Practices: Corporate Social Responsibility

The hotel industry has undertaken a long-term effort to build more responsible and socially conscious businesses. What began with small efforts to reduce waste - such as paperless checkouts and refillable soap dispensers - has evolved into an international movement toward implementing sustainable development practices. In addition to establishing themselves as good corporate citizens, adopting eco-friendly practices is sound business for hotels. According to a recent report from Deloitte, 95% of business travelers believe the hotel industry should be undertaking “green” initiatives, and Millennials are twice as likely to support brands with strong management of environmental and social issues. Given these conclusions, hotels are continuing to innovate in the areas of environmental sustainability. For example, one leading hotel chain has designed special elevators that collect kinetic energy from the moving lift and in the process, they have reduced their energy consumption by 50%  over conventional elevators. Also, they installed an advanced air conditioning system which employs a magnetic mechanical system that makes them more energy efficient. Other hotels are installing Intelligent Building Systems which monitor and control temperatures in rooms, common areas and swimming pools, as well as ventilation and cold water systems. Some hotels are installing Electric Vehicle charging stations, planting rooftop gardens, implementing stringent recycling programs, and insisting on the use of biodegradable materials. Another trend is the creation of Green Teams within a hotel's operation that are tasked to implement earth-friendly practices and manage budgets for green projects. Some hotels have even gone so far as to curtail or eliminate room service, believing that keeping the kitchen open 24/7 isn't terribly sustainable. The May issue of the Hotel Business Review will document what some hotels are doing to integrate sustainable practices into their operations and how they are benefiting from them.