France will not cap hotel prices during the Olympics this summer but instead increase checks to make sure visitors get their money’s worth, a minister said on Wednesday.
Some 15 million visitors are expected for the Olympics in July and August, and the Paralympics in August and early September.
Hotels have considerably marked up their prices for rooms during the Olympic Games from July 26 to August 11.
The minister responsible for tourism, Olivia Gregoire, told Sud Radio the government would in no way seek to limit these rates.
“There was never any price cap during the Olympics or Paralympics in London, Rio or even Beijing,” she told Sud Radio.
Instead 900 inspectors, around a third of those working for the government’s anti-fraud agency, will be tasked with “checking prices, sanitary conditions and the smooth running of the Olympic Games”, she said.
“All 1,600 Parisian hotels will be checked between now and the Games,” she said, adding 600 had already been reviewed.
Nationwide, 10,000 hotels and restaurants would be inspected in time for the Olympics.
“I urge everyone — hotels and restaurants — to be responsible… It’s essential that French and international tourists get their money’s worth,” she said.
“If not, they (hotels and restaurants) could be gravely sanctioned.”