14 Responses

  1. Boon
    Boon at |

    I am with you, when hotels are encouraging/soliciting the use of a supposedly objective site, it calls into question the objectivity of that site. Especially when the objectivity of said site was questionable at best prior to this.

    1. Copa
      Copa at |

      Seth, your alma mater is at the forefront of why this is happening. A professor at Cornell’s Hotel School did a paper which estimated that the probability of a TripAdvisor-listed property being the consumer’s choice goes up 0.2% for every review it gets. That same paper also said a one-point rise on their five-point scale would equal the same occupancy and market share, but an 11.2% room rate increase.

      Paper: http://www.hotelschool.cornell.edu/chr/pdf/showpdf/3349/chr/research/andersonsocialmedia.pdf

  2. Sandy Yang
    Sandy Yang at |

    Just wondering if the linkage is provided by TripAdvisor to property owners, or your hotel is taking advantage of the ‘subit review’ hyperlink to pretend to be a hotel survey. If it is the former case I will be in serious question of TripAdvisor’s objectiveness.

  3. jamesb2147
    jamesb2147 at |

    I once read the fine print on a card soliciting reviews for a hotel my cousin worked at. There was something about it that clearly violated TripAdvisor’s terms, and if we’d reported them, they likely would have faced some form of sanctions. (Not at all sure what those would be, though…)

    That was a couple of years ago.

    I’ll say that for me, it’s an extremely useful website. I’ll see photos of the properties, with dates to indicates which are recent, and it’s easy to spot properties with management that doesn’t care, or thieving employees, or just a smelly location.

    What do you use to separate the good hotels from the awful?

  4. Holiday Baker Man
    Holiday Baker Man at |

    i use trip advisor and contribute to trip advisor…your reviews would be most welcome there

  5. Honesty can hurt
    Honesty can hurt at |

    A ground transport company has sent me several e-mails requesting I review them on TripAdvisor. They provided a small discount to TripAdvisor and travel forum members when making the reservation. However, if I don’t leave something the first or second “request”, then what makes them think sending more requests is a good idea?

    Do they really want me to post “Driver tended to think lane lines were a whimsical suggestion and proceeded to simultaneously use of two lanes on expressway for 30+ minutes. Definitely appropriate cultural experience for this country which is known for drivers who take the driving laws as a light suggestion, delighting in the fear of their passengers. Thankfully traffic was light. They got us there on time by speeding and the van was clean.”?

  6. Stephan
    Stephan at |

    I think this is occurring more frequently. Hotels know the value of a good review on TA, however, it seems borderline at best to solicit in this manner. I do use TA as a guide and always eliminate those posts from people who bi*** about some aspect that was totally their own fault or assumption.

  7. NB
    NB at |

    The problem with TripAdvisor is that it’s heavily skewed to bad reviews. Most people simply don’t bother to post at all, unless they want to get something off their chest about their stay. That’s one of the many reasons I don’t use it.

    However, I can see that, by actively soliciting reviews from guests, this hotel could be aiming to produce a balance of views which more evenly represents what guests actually think. Also it would act as a survey if the hotel bothers to read all the reports.

  8. DaveS
    DaveS at |

    I have noticed any number of times that hotels are suggesting I post a review on TripAdvisor and other sites. I don’t know exactly what it means for TripAdvisor’s credibility, but it does mean the hotel is actively interested in what I think, and I think that is reflected at least a bit in the quality of service they provide. A place that craves good reviews and fears bad ones may try a little harder to satisfy the customer than one that doesn’t care.

    In the summer I went to Jordan and spent a night in a remote Bedouin camp. To get there someone at a base staging point radios the camp and after an hour or two someone shows up in a 4WD for a long but incredibly scenic drive out to the tent village where we’re staying. A traditional meal followed by the night spent in a tent or under the stars. Fascinating experience, In the morning, a long drive back to the staging point. Along with the traditional goodbyes: “Be sure to give us a good review on TripAdvisor. Remember, my name is Mohammad.”

    No doubt about it. TripAdvisor’s reach is just about universal now, and I think on balance it’s a good thing, despite some obvious limitations.

  9. AM
    AM at |

    if you don’t use TP, how do you research hotels in a new city?

  10. AM
    AM at |

    I mean TA, of course…

  11. Matt
    Matt at |

    What’s your site off choice for hotel reviews? I’ve tried other sites but none seem to have the quantity and currency of reviews that TA does. FT can be good for chain hotels, especially of you want to know what benefits, for example, HH Gold gets you. That said, I tend to look at a general theme and ignore the ranking. I also try to skip over reviewers with only one or a few reviews posted. I guess I should have asked this at your hotel talk at FTU.

  12. Ron
    Ron at |

    1,736
    readers on my one and only hotel review of a San Antonio hotel which made me very unhappy.Have to think it cost them at least a few bookings.

  13. Jeff R
    Jeff R at |

    Interesting. I do use TripAdvisor a lot (although I read it very critically). I’m also a very frequent contributor. But when I write a review, it’s NOT for the purpose of providing feedback to the hotelier – there are other, more appropriate ways of doing that. A TripAdvisor review is written to provide advice to fellow travelers. (So, for example, it’s perfectly fair to warn travelers of drawbacks that are beyond the control of the hotelier – things that would be pointless to mention in a feedback survey. By contrast, I never mention issues that were idiosyncratic, and particular to my own stay, even though these would be fair game for feedback to management.) I’d be concerned that this type of solicitation would yield reviews that are not really appropriate to TripAdvisor’s purpose.