Do you mention TripAdvisor at hotel check-in?

Old Nov 30th, 2006, 12:55 PM
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 20,901
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Do you mention TripAdvisor at hotel check-in?

It seems to me that TripAdvisor has become the ubiquitous hotel review site, because you get real reviews, unlike rosy reviews run by the booking sites themselves. This gives a reviewer posting on TripAdvisor enormous power to make or break a hotel in some cases; one concisely-written, detailed review could make a huge different to a hotel's future bookings.

At the same time, a site like TA seems like it's going to put lousy customer service out of business. Hotels will be unable to get away with a lousy experience the way they could in the past because people might stay only once and never come back - how much word of mouth damage could they possibly do? But with TripAdvisor, that damage could be enormous, especially if there are several bad reviews. Conversely, a relatively obscure place could flourish if it gets glowing reviews on TA.

My question is, given this new influence TripAdvisor users and hotel customers have, does anyone actually MENTION TripAdvisor at check-in? (Like, "I read about your hotel on TripAdvisor and look forward to reviewing it after my stay." ?) It would seem to me that this might affect, say, the kind of room you get - not that they will give you the Honeymoon Suite for the budget rate but at least you won't get the worst room at the hotel.

I'm staying at a hotel in Hawaii next week where there are only a few TA reviews and I think my review could make a difference (it's a small hotel, ownership changed about a year ago). I'm seriously considering dropping "TripAdvisor" somehow as I check in, just to see what happens. Anyone every done this? Do you think it's too arrogant and could backfire?
Andrew is offline  
Old Nov 30th, 2006, 01:10 PM
  #2  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 93,893
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
No, I never have, because I've yet to stay at a hotel because of Trip Advisor.

Flip side, I have mentioned that I was referred by "a friend who loves your hotel", when really it was a recommendation from the forum here at Fodor's.
suze is offline  
Old Nov 30th, 2006, 01:10 PM
  #3  
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Posts: 285
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
I made a reservation for a conference at a place that had mixed reviews. It was suggested to ask for a renovated room so I mentioned that I saw that and she said that is what I am booked for...we'll see. On the other hand, I am in the hospitality business and several people I know have been hurt bad by reviews that were falsely posted. In one case is was a disgruntled ex-employee sending it in, another someone who did not respect the cancelation policy so got back at them with an awful review...not even ever staying at the place in question! I think it is like everything else, you need to take all these with "a grain of salt".
thurstonbb is offline  
Old Nov 30th, 2006, 01:12 PM
  #4  
 
Join Date: Apr 2003
Posts: 19,419
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
At the check-out your talk to employees, not to the owners of hotels, especially if it's a large hotel. What do they care!

Same as I don't care at my workplace UNLESS it's something I've done personally for what I can be punished through reducing a bonus, for example.

There is not only TripAdvisor. This year, I've made reservations through Quikbook and Expedia. Both sent me follow-up e-mails asking for a review.

Sorry, I can't agree with the term "enormous power". Some influence, perhaps, but not as much for them to care, IMO. I may be wrong!
FainaAgain is offline  
Old Nov 30th, 2006, 01:15 PM
  #5  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 20,901
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
TripAdvisor is certainly not the only factor in my decision to stay at a particular hotel. But in some cases it can tip my choice toward staying in one when I have doubts. One review doesn't mean much and the actual star ratings are meaningless because every picks them differently. And I tend to exclude both the most rosy reviews (planted?) as well as the ones that seem unreasonably grumpy (some people complain about EVERYTHING).

But some of the TA reviews are very detailed, and you can sometimes see exactly where the reviewer is coming from. Usually you can tell if the reviewer is reasonable or just a complainer, whether they are a traveler like you or someone with a totally different outlook.

Andrew is offline  
Old Nov 30th, 2006, 01:19 PM
  #6  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 20,901
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
FainaAgain, the attitude of the employees at any business is usually the reflection of the management. A manager with a lousy or apathetic attitude isn't going to inspire employees to care or do a great job. A good manager knows how to get the best out of people and even help hire good people. In a hotel, this attitude is usually obvious to me. Even in restaurants lately I'm getting quite good at telling when a restaurant is well managed and when it isn't, by the way the employees treat me and the other customers.

Andrew is offline  
Old Nov 30th, 2006, 01:26 PM
  #7  
mms
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 17,495
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
I personally would never mention it at checkin, or at any point really. I do not want a nicer room if it is because the hotel thinks I will write a good review for them. A hotel should be able to stand on its own merits, without any bribing, IMO. I do write reviews most of the time...both good and bad. If a hotel wants a good review, they need to earn it.
mms is offline  
Old Nov 30th, 2006, 01:38 PM
  #8  
 
Join Date: Jun 2003
Posts: 4,181
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Never. My experience with TA has been very negative -- it attracts "professional" whiners who only know how to complain and, with their attitude, probably get what they deserve.

Also, people with neutral and positive experiences rarely feel compelled to report them, so even without the professional gripers, TA would skew to the negative.

Gekko is offline  
Old Nov 30th, 2006, 01:44 PM
  #9  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 20,901
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Gekko, why has your experience with TA been negative (besides the whiners?). Have your own hotel experiences been better or worse than the reviews you read on TA?

I can usually pick out the complainers right away (you know, the people who complain when the hotel staff can't quiet a cranky baby in the room next door). Some of the hotels do have good middle-of-the-road reviews, and when they complain about some things but seem reasonable about others, their reviews seem more authentic. I'm more likely to stay at a hotel that has some flaws as long as I can live with them.
Andrew is offline  
Old Nov 30th, 2006, 01:51 PM
  #10  
 
Join Date: Jun 2003
Posts: 4,181
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
I've visited TA to read what was posted about places I've stayed many times, and the "consensus" of the reviews rarely match my extensive experience.

In fact, sometimes I wonder if the reviewers are talking about the same hotel.
Gekko is offline  
Old Nov 30th, 2006, 01:57 PM
  #11  
 
Join Date: May 2004
Posts: 6,345
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
TA is unreliable at best....just check out the best restaurant and hotel in your home town. What a joke!
hawaiiantraveler is offline  
Old Nov 30th, 2006, 01:59 PM
  #12  
Dan
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 1,630
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
I don't rely on TripAdvisor 100%, but I must say that I've eliminated hotels based on negative TA ratings. You can weed through the "whiners" to find well-written reviews, both positive and negative. Let's face it...some of the dogs DESERVE bad reviews and many of the well-run places DESERVE the gushing praise they receive.
Dan is offline  
Old Nov 30th, 2006, 02:06 PM
  #13  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 20,901
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
I'd stay restaurants and hotels are two very different beasts. Restaurants are far more subjective because each person's tastes are different so two people could eat at the same restaurant, same night, be served by the same wait person and same cook and have two different impressions, because one liked her meal and the other didn't like his. Sure, hotel experiences are subjective too but not as subjective as the flavor or texture of the food you are eating, how hungry you are for the hour you are at a restaurant, etc. vs a day or two stay at a hotel.

Andrew is offline  
Old Nov 30th, 2006, 02:28 PM
  #14  
OO
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Posts: 9,043
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Andrew, from what I know, you are giving trip advisor far more importance than hotels give it.

Frankly, if I were on the front desk when you came in and said anything about them, it'd just gripe me.
OO is offline  
Old Nov 30th, 2006, 02:35 PM
  #15  
 
Join Date: May 2004
Posts: 6,345
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Andrew:

Do you really give TA that much credence?

How did you arrive at your conclusion that hotels would give a rats behind what TA has to say about anything.

Is this a troll question?
hawaiiantraveler is offline  
Old Nov 30th, 2006, 02:48 PM
  #16  
 
Join Date: May 2003
Posts: 27,867
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Just like here, TA is subject to some very biased opinions. And in fact, earlier this year, someone was "caught" on here trying to talk up his hotel in Sedona and made mention of the great reviews on TA -- which were all posted within a few days of each other. The hotel owner eventually fessed up that they were plants on there and here to.

While that is only one instance, I have often found that TA reviews could be very different from one another and as such, you have to wonder who is right?

I would not rely solely on TA for deciding on a hotel. And I agree that mentioning it at check is going to look like you are trying to get something bribe-like from them [better room etc] to write a good review. Defeats the purpose of TA doesn't it?

IMHO of course...
Debi
DebitNM is offline  
Old Nov 30th, 2006, 03:01 PM
  #17  
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Posts: 10,966
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
The only time I ever mentioned TripAdvisor under the specified circumstances was to the daughter of the owner of a lovely family-run boutique hotel in Ronda, Spain.

She and her brother were very kind to us.
happytrailstoyou is offline  
Old Nov 30th, 2006, 03:03 PM
  #18  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 20,901
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
No, it's not a troll question, LOL! But thanks for responding anyway, hawaiiantraveler!

For some reason I need to keep repeating this, but while I do give a lot of credence to the reviews at TA, I also am quick to dismiss the reviews that are too negative or too positive, unless they seem reasonable. That's why I would have just ignored the planted reviews of someone

Andrew is offline  
Old Nov 30th, 2006, 03:12 PM
  #19  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 20,901
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
[sorry for the hickup!]

No, it's not a troll question, LOL! But thanks for responding anyway, hawaiiantraveler!

For some reason I need to keep repeating this, but while I do give a lot of credence to the reviews at TA, I also am quick to dismiss the reviews that are too negative or too positive, unless they seem reasonable. That's why I would have just ignored the planted reviews of someone "talking up" a particular hotel if it sounded too good. I also read all the reviews, not just one.

Some comments in reviews are helpful and obviously genuine. One reviewer said that she got a great deal on a particular hotel but would have never paid the rate she saw it advertised for elsewhere, because it wasn't worth more than she paid. No hotel is going to plant that comment in a fake review!

Absolutely hotels should take TripAdvisor comments very seriously. Some of you may turn your nose up at them but many others I believe are reading them. Search for your favorite hotel and you'll find the TripAdvisor page in the top 3 or 4 hits almost every time. Hotels that have gotten along in the past on location and puffed up advertising without providing good service are going have to do something if they see a bunch of horrible reviews on a website and see reduced bookings at the same time. That's what it comes down to: bookings. If you managed a hotel which was not performing as well as it should and saw some bad reviews on TripAdvisor, you would continue to ignore them at your peril.
Andrew is offline  
Old Nov 30th, 2006, 03:15 PM
  #20  
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Posts: 1,336
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
I use Tripadvisor as an additional source and find it generally helpful. Sometimes posters give information which is useful such as 'If you have an Avis car the parking fee is waived as this agency is at the hotel'.... this saved me $40 last week.

I don't mention Tripadvisor when I arrive or leave a hotel. I have reviewed a B&B and sent my review to the owners via email.

Maybe you could influence smaller businesses but I don't think large chains will be affected or bothered by mention of Tripadvisor.
highflyer is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Do Not Sell My Personal Information

FODOR'S VIDEO