The UK’s Travelodge chain been the source of headlines in the UK these last few days due to an old decision to remove Bibles from guest rooms in the name of diversity. You’ll see headlines from the Huffington Post UK, Daily Mail, the International Business Times and plenty more based on this Google search.
A Travelodge spokesman told HuffPost UK that the policy is actually seven years old, but was only now being discussed in the media. The Church of England is even lashing out against the 500-location chain, releasing a statement that calls the move “both tragic and bizarre.”
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Other large UK hotel chains – the budget Premier Inn and the luxury InterContinental – told the International Business Times that Bibles are staying put. Travelodge said Bibles are available at reception for customers. A Travelodge spokesperson told the Daily Mail:
“This decision was based on customer research and the fact that we live in a multicultural society. Therefore in order not to discriminate against any religion, customers who would like a Bible can pick a copy from any one of Travelodge’s 500 hotel reception desks across the country, whilst staying at the hotel. To date, Travelodge has not received any customer feedback regarding this decision.”
In 2012, I wrote a story about how one of IHG’s boutique-style Hotel Indigo hotels in the UK was experimenting with offering guests an unconventional hotel Bible – one that was pre-loaded on Kindle e-readers. The story received a whopping 163 comments!
Readers: Comments on the subject?