Wyndham, Best Western cut ties with the NRA

Wyndham said the company stepped away from the NRA in 2017. Photo credit: Wyndham Worldwide

Amid the rapidly evolving gun-control debate taking place in the U.S., a number of corporations have made the decision to distance themselves from the National Rifle Association. In response to the growing outcry from travelers, two hotel companies so far have announced their decision to drop their affiliation with the NRA.

The NRA has roughly 5 million members, and has partnered with nearly every category of business from car rentals to travel agencies. Delta Airlines and United Continental Holdings were joined by Wyndham Worldwide and Best Western Hotels & Resorts on Friday as each company revealed their decision to end their relationship with the NRA as calls for boycotts mounted. 

While the recent shooting at a high school in Parlkand, Fla., has reinvigorated gun-control activists and their calls for businesses drop their support of the NRA, both Best Western and Wyndham previously were targeted by activists for their relationship with the lobbying group. In 2012 following the shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School, activist group Avaaz organized a boycott of both Best Western and Wyndham properties. At the time, both companies listed themselves as “friends of the NRA” on their website, with Wyndham offering a 10-percent discount to NRA members. 

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Wyndham Worldwide revealed via Twitter last week, however, that the company is “no longer affiliated with the NRA,” and claims it stepped away from the relationship in 2017.

Meanwhile, Best Western reportedly offered discounts to NRA cardholders as recently as 2016, although a representative of the company said in a statement that Best Western “ended any association with the NRA in 2014.” Via Twitter, the company has also reiterated that it has no affiliation with the group.

The NRA isn’t being totally hung out to dry, however. Booking service HotelPlanner.com stated its intent to honor its contract with the NRA. Additionally, both the Hyatt Regency Dallas and the Omni Dallas Hotel are still expected to host NRA events during the organization’s annual convention this May.

“Our company provides discounted rooms to several large associations, including the NRA. These associations greatly benefit our customers by buying discounted rooms from groups that might otherwise be charged a penalty by hotels for not using all of the rooms in their block,” Tim Henschel, CEO of HotelPlanner, said in a statement. “Many of our groups are charity events, weddings, family reunions and youth sports teams, so saving these groups that are on a budget from any unforeseen expense is our number one priority at HotelPlanner.com.”

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