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Hotel chains with the highest and lowest customer satisfaction

Hotel chains with the highest and lowest customer satisfaction
1/Jacob Lund // Shutterstock

Hotel chains with the highest and lowest customer satisfaction

The world's oldest hotel, the Nishiyama Onsen Keiunkan located in Yamanashi, Japan, has offered travelers a place to stay since 705 A.D. The hotel has been run by 52 generations of the same family, earning it its record title in the the Guinness Book of World Records.

Of course, not every hotel option (especially in the United States) is going to have that family feel to it. For U.S. travelers, it's far more common to stay in a hotel that is part of a major chain and owned by a parent company rather than a local family. Many of these chains offer nearly identical rooms and nearly identical experiences, but a few offer unique stays and ultimate luxury.

For travelers planning their next vacation or just dreaming about their next getaway, it's always good to know what the lodging options are in any given location. To that end, Stacker has rounded up the hotel chains with the highest and lowest customer satisfaction in the country.

Using data provided by the American Customer Satisfaction Index (last updated April 24, 2018), Stacker ranked the hotels from worst to best by their ACSI score. All ties remain unbroken. For more than two decades the ACSI has analyzed customer satisfaction for household products and services available to U.S. consumers. For this particular study, the ACSI collected their data by conducting random sample interviews with recent hotel guests, claiming to provide the only national cross-industry measure of customer satisfaction in the U.S.

The ACSI score is designed to be a national cross-industry measure of customer satisfaction in the country. The index aims to help travelers identify the best possible hotel for their next much needed vacation, long weekend, or just a business trip.

You may also like: 50 of the most beautiful hotel lobbies in the world

#31. Days Inn (tie)
2/Baltimore Heritage // Flickr

#31. Days Inn (tie)

- ACSI score: 65
- Parent company: Wyndham
- Class: Economy

Opened in 1970 with a single location in Tybee Island, Ga., Days Inn hotels can now be found worldwide. A budget hotel, most locations offer rooms only (no suites) and aren't full-service, both factors which could contribute to the chain's low customer satisfaction rating.

#31. Motel 6 (tie)
3/Sheila Fitzgerald // Shutterstock

#31. Motel 6 (tie)

- ACSI score: 65
- Parent company: G6 Hospitality
- Class: Economy

Motel 6 predates Days Inn by about 8 years—the first one opened in Santa Barbara, Calif., in 1962 and offered rooms at $6 a night. In March 2019 alone there were dozens of reports of stabbings, shootings, and found bodies at various Motel 6 locations, all of which have done nothing to bolster the chain's reputation.

#30. Quality
4/Brorsson // Wikimedia Commons

#30. Quality

- ACSI score: 66
- Parent company: Choice
- Class: Midscale

Quality Inn had a unique start, even for the hotel industry. In 1939 seven Florida motor court owners joined together to form a cooperative, referring customers to each other's hotels and effectively creating the first hotel chain. Today, Choice hotels are in 40 countries around the world, and Quality Inns are one of the brand's cheaper options. Rates vary from $50 a night in rural areas to $130 or more in urban centers.

#28. Ramada (tie)
5/Abasaa // Wikimedia Commons

#28. Ramada (tie)

- ACSI score: 67
- Parent company: Wyndham
- Class: Midscale

Located in 63 countries, Ramada hotels have the most airport locations internationally compared to all other hotel brands. Rates at lower-tier Ramada locations vary between $60 a night to $150 a night at most locations. Recently a Ramada in upstate New York was dinged for a rodent infestation and faulty pool equipment and made national headlines when the local health department shut it down.

#28. Super 8 (tie)
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#28. Super 8 (tie)

- ACSI score: 67
- Parent company: Wyndham
- Class: Economy

Super 8 hotels are owned by the same parent company as Ramada and Wyndham, and both chains have been given the exact same score by the ACSI. Opened in 1974 in Aberdeen, South Dakota, rooms originally cost $8.88 a night.

#27. Econo Lodge
7/Michael Rivera // Wikimedia Commons

#27. Econo Lodge

- ACSI score: 73
- Parent company: Choice
- Class: Economy

There are about 800 Econo Lodge locations around the country—about half the number of Choice's other inexpensive option, Quality Inn. While they may be smaller in number, Econo Lodge scored better with customers than Quality Inn. Econo Lodge does have more prime locations, including near Times Square in New York City and in downtown Los Angeles.

#25. Comfort Inn, Comfort Suites (tie)
8/Farragutful // Wikimedia Commons

#25. Comfort Inn, Comfort Suites (tie)

- ACSI score: 75
- Parent company: Choice
- Class: Upper Midscale

With more than 1,800 locations across the United States, Comfort Inn and Comfort Suites hotels are one of the most prolific midscale brands in the country. In 2017, a Comfort brand hotel opened every single week. Known for their extensive breakfast buffet and clean (albeit quaint) rooms, Comfort brand hotels remain one of traveler's favorite and most budget-friendly (rooms run the gamut from $60 a night to $150+) options.

#25. Residence Inn (tie)
9/Raysonho @ Open Grid Scheduler // Wikimedia Commons

#25. Residence Inn (tie)

- ACSI score: 75
- Parent company: Marriott
- Class: Upscale

The first extended stay hotel on the list, Residence Inn hotels number in the mid-700s. The first Residence Inn was opened in Wichita, Kansas in 1975 and was acquired by Marriott in 1987. Today the hotels are mostly in the U.S., but expansion into other areas of the world, such as the Middle East, began recently. The extended-stay model means that rooms aren't cleaned daily, and the entire location has more of an apartment feel.

#21. Best Western (tie)
10/David Schott // Flickr

#21. Best Western (tie)

- ACSI score: 76
- Parent company: Best Western
- Class: Midscale

Best Western is the largest hotel chain in the world with respect to the number of properties under a single flag, with 4,000 hotels in nearly 80 countries around the world. Began in 1946 by M.K. Guertin as an informal referral system among member hotels, Best Western had become the country's largest hotel chain in the U.S. by 1963. Savvy travelers today can nab a room at a Best Western for between $100 and $200 a night, depending on the size of the city they're looking to stay in.

#21. Holiday Inn (tie)
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#21. Holiday Inn (tie)

- ACSI score: 76
- Parent company: InterContinental
- Class: Upper Midscale

Kemmon Wilson saw a need in the hotel industry for a family-friendly hotel, so he opened his own chain, Holiday Inn hotels. International almost from the start, the hotels still don't charge extra for children, and almost all include amenities like a pool, ice machines, and on-site restaurants. Prices vary greatly depending on location, but those who join the Holiday Inn rewards club can save on their reservations.

#21. La Quinta Inns & Suites (tie)
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#21. La Quinta Inns & Suites (tie)

- ACSI score: 76
- Parent company: La Quinta
- Class: Midscale

Primarily located in Florida, Texas, and California, La Quinta Inns & Suites are designed for cost-conscious business travelers. Owned in full by the Barshop family, La Quinta hotels come without the frills that many travelers have come to expect from other wallet-friendly hotels like pools. However, nearly all of them are pet-friendly, making them perfect options for those who can't bear to leave their furry friends behind.

#21. Wyndham Hotels and Resorts (tie)
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#21. Wyndham Hotels and Resorts (tie)

- ACSI score: 76
- Parent company: Wyndham
- Class: Upscale

The Wyndham Hotel Group is the world’s largest and most diverse hotel company, with 15 brands and 7,205 hotels in 66 countries around the world. Wyndham Hotels and Resorts are the company’s namesake, and all of their locations are in prime vacation and business destinations around the world (think New York City, Hawaii, and Las Vegas). From fitness centers to outdoor pools and conference rooms, Wyndham Hotels and Resorts offer everything that many business and leisure travelers have come to expect.

#19. DoubleTree (tie)
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#19. DoubleTree (tie)

- ACSI score: 77
- Parent company: Hilton
- Class: Upscale

Famous for their warm chocolate chip cookie greeting at check-in, DoubleTree hotels are located in 40 different countries and territories worldwide. It's this kind of exceptional service and human touch that elevate the hotels' otherwise standard offerings. Rates range between $120 per night for more rural areas to $300+ per night for more urban or overseas locations.

#19. Holiday Inn Express (tie)
15/Rick Obst // Flickr

#19. Holiday Inn Express (tie)

- ACSI score: 77
- Parent company: InterContinental
- Class: Upper Midscale

Holiday Inn Express hotels market themselves as an ideal place to stay for a short and busy stay. While they offer limited amenities, they're usually centrally located, making them perfect for a business traveler or a tourist who plans to only come back to his room to sleep.

#16. Baymont Inn & Suites (tie)
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#16. Baymont Inn & Suites (tie)

- ACSI score: 78
- Parent company: Wyndham
- Class: Midscale

Baymont Inn & Suites offer limited amenities and service, but it's the company's slightly oversized rooms that really resonate with customers. Additionally, rates for standard rooms are generally less than $100 a night at every Baymont location, making this a dream for travelers who aren't looking to pay more for a little extra room.

#16. Best Western Plus (tie)
17/Mike Mozart // Flickr

#16. Best Western Plus (tie)

- ACSI score: 78
- Parent company: Best Western
- Class: Upper Midscale

A step above a standard Best Western, Best Western Plus hotels offer larger rooms with a more extensive kitchen set up as well as hotel businesses centers making this a more preferable option for those traveling for business. Rates are generally around $50 more a night than at a typical Best Western—but for many travelers, the extra expense is well worth it.

#16. Hyatt Regency (tie)
18/Abasaa // Wikimedia Commons

#16. Hyatt Regency (tie)

- ACSI score: 78
- Parent company: Hyatt
- Class: Upper Upscale

Hyatt was founded in 1957 by Jay and Donald Pritzker, and in 1967 the first Hyatt Regency opened in Atlanta, Ga., offering to lodge Civil Rights leaders who had been turned away elsewhere. Today there are 175 Hyatt Regency hotels, all offering 24/7 room service and fitness centers, spa treatments and pools. Rates vary between $125 a night and upwards of $300 for these upper-upscale hotels.

#12. Bestwestern Premier (tie)
19/Rosemoon // Wikimedia Commons

#12. Bestwestern Premier (tie)

- ACSI score: 79
- Parent company: Best Western
- Class: Upscale

With locations across the U.S., Canada, and the Caribbean Bestwestern Premier hotels are “a cut above the ordinary” and the fanciest option in the Best Western family. Room rates vary from $120 a night to more than $300 depending on the location and size of the room.

#12. Candlewood Suites (tie)
20/Michael Rivera // Wikimedia Commons

#12. Candlewood Suites (tie)

- ACSI score: 79
- Parent company: InterContinental
- Class: Midscale

Candlewood Suites were founded in 1995 by the same man who founded the Residence Inn, Jack DeBoer. Another extended stay hotel, Candlewood Suites offer unique services like free guest laundry, outdoor gazebo grills, and spacious suites with both sleeping and living quarters.

#12. Hyatt Place (tie)
21/JMG717 // Wikimedia Commons

#12. Hyatt Place (tie)

- ACSI score: 79
- Parent company: Hyatt
- Class: Upscale

A step down from Hyatt Regency hotels, Hyatt Place hotels are more curated and intentional than others in the family. Each location boasts an atrium—a distinctive feature of most Hyatt hotels—as well as a gallery, meant for meeting and mingling. Ultra-modern rooms and suites, as well as pet-friendly spaces, await travelers upon check-in.

#12. Sheraton (tie)
22/Wistula // Wikimedia Commons

#12. Sheraton (tie)

- ACSI score: 79
- Parent company: Starwood (Marriott)
- Class: Upper Upscale

One of the oldest chains on the list, Sheraton hotels were founded in 1937. Plans were recently announced to give Sheraton hotels in the U.S. a $500-million facelift in an attempt to increase customer satisfaction and ratings. Meanwhile, Sheraton hotels outside the country tend to perform better and offer more luxuries, making them a choice destination for international travelers.

#10. Crowne Plaza Hotels & Resorts (tie)
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#10. Crowne Plaza Hotels & Resorts (tie)

- ACSI score: 80
- Parent company: InterContinental
- Class: Upscale

A business hotel through and through, Crowne Plaza Hotels & Resorts is located in 65 countries around the world in major urban centers. Every single location offers a business center, conference rooms, and places to hold meetings of all sizes. The company also offers the services of a meeting director and are full-service for those who choose to stay overnight.

#10. Westin (tie)
24/Cezary p // Wikimedia Commons

#10. Westin (tie)

- ACSI score: 80
- Parent company: Starwood (Marriott)
- Class: Upper Upscale

An upscale offering from Marriott, Westin hotels focus on wellness. Everything from the bedding to the spa offerings is designed to help customers transcend the rigors of traveling. Rooms at a Westin hotel are on the more expensive side—an average of $200 a night for domestic options and upwards of $300 a night for international hotels—but the chain's ACSI rating of 80 shows that the price tag is well worth it.

#7. Courtyard (tie)
25/ChristianSchd // Wikimedia Commons

#7. Courtyard (tie)

- ACSI score: 81
- Parent company: Marriott
- Class: Upscale

Courtyard hotels are one of the newer offerings on the list, having only opened 30 years ago. Catering primarily to the business traveler, Courtyard hotels don't offer a lot of “extra” amenities (no spas or 24/7 room service here). However, they remain decently priced for an upscale hotel and offer all the amenities travelers have come to expect as standard (business centers, breakfast buffets, and fitness centers).

#7. Fairfield Inn & Suites (tie)
26/Goematus // Wikimedia Commons

#7. Fairfield Inn & Suites (tie)

- ACSI score: 81
- Parent company: Marriott
- Class: Upper Midscale

Fairfield Inn & Suites was founded in 1987 in Atlanta, Ga., by John Willard and Alice Marriott. The business hotel chain now has over 900 locations around in the U.S. and China, with prices ranging between $100 and $200 a night.

#7. Marriott Hotels (tie)
27/Globetrotter19 // Wikimedia Commons

#7. Marriott Hotels (tie)

- ACSI score: 81
- Parent company: Marriott
- Class: Upper Upscale

Over the course of the next three years, Marriott Hotels plans to open 1,700 new locations. The chain is already taking steps to bring its offerings to the next level by doing things like streaming TED Talks in guest rooms and installing M Beta buttons in certain locations, which allow guests to give instant feedback on new innovations.

#3. Embassy Suites (tie)
28/M.O. Stevens // Wikimedia Commons

#3. Embassy Suites (tie)

- ACSI score: 82
- Parent company: Hilton
- Class: Upper Upscale

With almost 250 locations in Canada, the U.S., and Latin America, Embassy Suites is one of the top-rated hotel chains on the market. As the name would suggest, every room is a suite with a door between the sleeping and living areas. For many customers, it's the added space (and the complimentary snacks and drinks every night) that make a stay here well worth it.

#3. Hampton (tie)
29/M.O. Stevens // Wikimedia Commons

#3. Hampton (tie)

- ACSI score: 82
- Parent company: Hilton
- Class: Upper Midscale

According to ACSI, Hampton hotels are the best midscale hotel chain option. With over 2,000 locations, room prices run from $100-200 a night depending on location and room size. Hampton hotels offer all the necessities—a standard breakfast, Wi-Fi, coffee and tea, and fitness centers or pools—making them perfect for the unfussy traveler.

#3. Hilton Hotels & Resorts (tie)
30/Pixabay

#3. Hilton Hotels & Resorts (tie)

- ACSI score: 82
- Parent company: Hilton
- Class: Upper Upscale

In 1919, Conrad Hilton bought his first hotel in Waco, Texas. Hilton Hotels have pioneered many firsts for the industry, such as televisions in guest rooms and airport hotels. Prices vary wildly depending on location, but frequent visitors who join the Honors Program can nab some great discounts.

#3. JW Marriott (tie)
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#3. JW Marriott (tie)

- ACSI score: 82
- Parent company: Marriott
- Class: Luxury

The top offering from the Marriott group, J.W. Marriott hotels offer luxury that travelers usually doesn't find in international chains. The most expensive rooms on the list, a night here is not cheap, but travelers can rest assured that every detail of their stay has been carefully considered. J.W. Marriott hotels offer amenities such as a spa, fitness classes, and star chefs.

#2. Hilton Garden Inn
32/Luke.Travel // Shutterstock

#2. Hilton Garden Inn

- ACSI score: 83
- Parent company: Hilton
- Class: Upscale

With more than 700 locations worldwide, Hilton Garden Inns stand out from the rest of the Hilton offerings thanks to things like made-to-order breakfasts and in-room Keurig coffee makers. 2019 will see 23 new Hilton Garden Inns open in exotic locations like Switzerland and China as well as local stops destinations like Kentucky and New Jersey.

#1. AC Hotels
33/Oliver Foerstner // Shutterstock

#1. AC Hotels

- ACSI score: 84
- Parent company: Marriott
- Class: Upscale

The top-rated hotel chain on the list, AC Hotels started in Europe and were only brought to the U.S. in 2014. For many travelers, it seems to be the modern design and international influences, as well as amenities like mobile check-in and check-out, that make the chain a favorite. With nearly 60 American locations and more set to open in the following year, more customers will be able to experience the chain.

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