TripAdvisor: Friend or Foe?
Posted 22 January 2009 - 08:38 AM
But when you are carting 50 people with 50 expectations to the Caribbean, suddenly these things matter!
My hotel has recieved the same complaints over and over again and I am quite concerned...but then others say it was great.
FI says "Stop reading TripAdvisor!"
Anyone else reading reviews and wondering if they should have book down the beach?
Interested in sharing a Photographer: May 9 - 16, 2009
Punta Cana, Dominican RepublicPM me if interested....
Posted 22 January 2009 - 10:00 AM
my hubby and i always say, there are 2 kinds of people who travel to mexico (for example):
~travelers- a traveler books the best hotel for their money and expects little but is rewarded by being surprised with way more than they thought they were getting. a traveler is the kind of person who tips well for services, doesnt complain much, and is just happy to be on a tropical vacation in a beautiful and warm location with a drink in their hand while sitting in the pool, instead of at home/work, and will find a way to make any situation work for them.
~vacationers- people who should have stayed in america/canada because nothing is good enough for them. unadventurous people. people who are used to being spoiled and waited on hand and foot but dont tip well even for fantastic service. people who expect 5 star/diamond/apple service and accomodations in a 3rd world country thats sometimes-motto is "Manana, I'm on Mexican time!" rude, pushy, and unaware that the native people of the country are human beings too.
anyways, we always read the review with these descriptions in mind, you can immediately pick the "traveler" reviews from the "vacationer" reviews. hubby and i definately see ourselves as travelers, and we have never been so disappointed or disgusted with a place that we have stayed at that we came home and wrote an embarassing review like some i have seen on TA!
my absolute favorite part about the trip advisor reviews is you can look at REAL pictures taken by and uploaded by the actual person, rather than just the resort/hotel photos that the PR person for the hotel chain wanted you to see.
you can see exactly what you are getting yourself into: bugs, mold, dirt, linens, bathrooms, pools, bars, buffets, everything! if you dont like what you see, dont stay there! i always look at the traveler photos first when i start researching any hotel, pictures dont lie!
but just take what you read with a grain of salt, if you feel good about the place and you dont go there expecting perfection, you will end up having the best vacation every time
Posted 22 January 2009 - 10:09 AM
If there is something that is restated over and over again (a complaint), I would look into that. But not everyone goes somewhere and has an excellent vacation. I have gone to places and had an excellent time and came back and saw awful reviews of the place and also vice versa.
Hi Abby! My fellow July '08 Bride!
Posted 22 January 2009 - 10:20 AM
Another thing to pay attention to on TA is the date of the post and the profile of the reviewer.
Be sure to search the forum for reviews that have taken place at your resort. This is probaly a more realistic comparison and source of information than a review from a couple who got a last minute deal.
I also like the "real" pictures feature. My stepmom wrote a positive review of our trip (she had seen a few negtaives before we left) and was browsing the pictures and found some with my dad in the backgroud that had been posted by another user.
Some resorts have their own forums/message boards that can be useful as well.
Posted 22 January 2009 - 10:34 AM
My honeymoon hotel opened a month ago, and the reviews are totally a mixed bag. I'm just hoping that by the time I get there in 3 months, the kinks will be worked out.
The real traveler photos are totally the best!
Posted 22 January 2009 - 10:43 AM
Have you ever tried the forums on Tripadvisor? I find them much more helpful than just the reviews because it is typically people who travel there often.
Posted 24 January 2009 - 11:38 AM
I suggest reading the reviews with a grain of salt as you don't really know the people they're coming from. But I would worry though if the same complaint keeps reccuring.
Posted 29 January 2009 - 06:13 PM
One thing that worried me about about my resort was the reviews about people getting sick from the food. Well, FI brought me back down to earth; you are in a foreign country and people are probably drinking the water (a la' Charlotte in SITC) - so of course they are getting sick. And some people's stomach's are more sensitive than others ...
Look at the reviews in general and def look at the pics!
Posted 29 January 2009 - 06:26 PM
I think a big problem with some vacationers is they don't do any research. They want the Ritz service, but want to pay for Motel 6.
I have to keep laughing at some of the reviews that our resort is getting. My fav is the one that complains about no cocktail service on the beach. (how hard is it to walk a few yards to the bar??) If they had even glanced at the Riu's website they would see that Riu has 4 levels of hotel...and the RMB is the lowest level. If you wanted the white glove service then you should have booked one of the higher class Rius.
FI and I always joke that we are what we call "blue collar kids". We will never be the type to afford a Ritz or Four Seasons....and wouldn't know what to do with ourselves if we could.
Posted 29 January 2009 - 07:17 PM
Everyone has different standards and expectations. I read TA a lot before chosing a resort, and have in the past chosen resorts that had bad ratings, since the issues that some of the negative posters experienced would not have bothered me as much.
For example, a recent resort that FI and I stayed at had a lot of negative reviews on TA due to loud techno music being played by the pool....this didn't bother us one bit and we really enjoyed our stay. If my grandparents were staying there, they would have hated it and given the resort a negative review....know what I mean?
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