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Myer Oct 21st, 2007 01:54 PM

Where are the Trip Reports?
I've noticed many times people ask for help and mention when they are going on their trip.

This weekend I checked about a dozen of those and found very few trip reports from these people.

In fact, in most cases their request was their last post.

What makes this board is not just the requests. It's the trip reports as well!!!!

iamq Oct 21st, 2007 02:05 PM

People disappearing after they recieve help, advice and guidance is not new. I don't like it either, but for some folks these boards all about taking and taking is a lot easier and less time consuming than giving back.

nyer Oct 21st, 2007 02:25 PM

Posting a trip report is not the only way to contribute to a community like this--sometimes the best way to thank everyone for their help is to try to answer the questions of others. And even if someone never posts a report, the
give and take we provide helps lots of others plan their trips, even if they never post their own questions

There are many reasons I can think of not to write a trip report:

Maybe the trip never happened.

Maybe an initial request was for info for a business trip, or a trip to visit a sick friend, or some other reason the trip wasn't a vacation that lends itself to a trip report.

Maybe the poster doesn't feel he has the ability to write a good report.

Maybe she had lots of time when planning a trip, but after a longplanned trip, life is back to hectic-normal job, family etc.

Maybe the poster didn't like or take anyone's advice, and doesn't want to insult people or discourage them from answering in the future, by posting a report that said they didnt use any of our good advice.

I enjoy some trip reports here, and skip over others, but I never wait around or check to see if someone has posted one!

ronkala Oct 21st, 2007 02:44 PM

And maybe the poster, like me, is not a fast typist, but more hunt and peck, using for the most part, one hand. I did a report on our two week Swiss trip and was off line before it was finished. Since then I've had two separate surgeries for carpal tunnel and never got back to it. Will I do another report? Maybe.

Then you get those who do a Europe report on the U.S. board and get shot down for posting on the "wrong" board by the holier than thou posters on this one. If it happened to me, I would not repost it.

tabhauser Oct 21st, 2007 03:11 PM

Please see my trip report on Kauai at and click Kauai. This is my personal web site, no ads, no signs ins. it is written after our family trip using tips from this board.

happytrailstoyou Oct 21st, 2007 04:53 PM

Sometimes the trip reports are way too long to read.

Several posters have complained that nobody commented on their trip reports.

A couple times when I've commented on trip reports, I was bad-mouthed by a subsequent poster.

skatedancer Oct 21st, 2007 05:12 PM

I enjoy writing trip reports, but they really do take alot out of you. I posted on my European trip this summer, but never even finished my last two cities, despite my many promises that I would!

It can be difficult to figure out how to organize it, particularly if you do not want to report on every minute of your day.

But because I do like to come back and report, I feel that when I travel now, I am sort of looking at my trip as an observer as well as being a participant, which adds some richness to the experience.

Mamaw Oct 21st, 2007 05:21 PM

I have done a few reports. I really appreicate all the help I get here and want to give back. Even when people say mean things about my report. But I got more Good than bad. So that helps. Some people like my reports and to them Thank You.

We leave on our Family Cruise this Nov. Can't wait for that one to post.

socialworker Oct 21st, 2007 05:32 PM

I am neutral on trip reports. Some are interesting but some too long, IMO. However, there is no excuse for the OPs not updating those who offered help. At the very least, the forum should be told which, if any, of the suggestions were usted and how it turned out for them.

Myer Oct 21st, 2007 05:37 PM

I realize there may be valid reasons why sombody wouldn't be able to write a report.

I also realize that not all reports are easy to read due to differences in writing style, etc. Some are very short and others are too long (mine).

However, I spent several hours (I guess it wasn't a very exciting weekend) checking out requests that indicated when the trip would be taken and tried to find reports for these trips.

Yes, I found some. But way too many weren't written.

schnauzer Oct 21st, 2007 06:01 PM

I like to write trip reports as I feel it is the least I can do after receiving help and advice from many on this board. However, I do tend to get a bit carried away and probably they are too long.

I do wonder sometimes just how many people actually take the time to read them and is it really worth all the effort? It is disheartening to take so long to write them and then only receive a few comments. I know that people do read and don't comment but you are still left wondering if people are really that interested in what you did. I guess they are always good for a research tool which is what this board is mostly about. I will continue to report back but I think I will try and be more brief in future. For my last trip I wrote two reports, one on the europe board and one on the education board which took forever and was very detailed, I have only received one "hit" on this report and again am left wondering was it all worth the effort. I don't want to sound miffed but trying to help throw some light on the OP's question.

scarboroughmom Oct 21st, 2007 06:27 PM

I don't write trip reports, but I try to answer questions or give opinions when I think I have something to offer.

I don't know where people find the time to write detailed reports. I envy them their organizational skills. I spend my life doing laundry, and I haven't seen the floor of my laundry room since last May. I think I've had a good day if two rooms in my house are neat at the same time. I can't even imagine what it feels like to have enough spare time to write a trip report.

moneygirl Oct 21st, 2007 06:32 PM

I try to give ehlpful information to those traveling "in my area" and I also ask questions when I have a need.

Sometimes I write reports.. sometimes not. TIme is usually the reason not. I'm still feeling guilty that I didn't write a report about my Australia trip in 2003! I wrote a short one a few weeks ago about the BAacara Resort in Santa Barbara and no one commented ... but my feelings were not hurt... it may be helpful if someone does a search in the future.

When I have feww time I like to read reports... especially when they are well written.

maj Oct 21st, 2007 07:12 PM

I usually try to write trip reports (mine are always too long but I figure people can read as much as they want). I type them in Word first so I have a record of our trip. There were a couple of times I wasn't going to post one because I didn't feel I had anything to add that hadn't been already covered here. But, after receiving questions on some things I had covered, I realized that they were helping some people who hadn't seen the information before.

I love reading them (mostly on places I have been or are hoping to go) and am guilty of not usually commenting (especially if they already have quite a few comments and I have nothing new to say). Although I don't go through looking for certain reports, I am interested in how trips turned out when I have followed their planning.

Weren't they going to start a category just for trip reports?

NeoPatrick Oct 21st, 2007 07:26 PM

I sort of understand someone coming here and seeking bits and pieces of information but not coming back to give a full report. What I don't understand are those who make a big deal about insisting they WILL come back and report, but never do.

trippinkpj Oct 21st, 2007 08:16 PM

I agree with Patrick on that point. I'm not the most elaborate trip report poster but at least I post some highlights of my trip, favorite dining experiences, etc..

imawanderlust Oct 21st, 2007 09:23 PM

I'm a relative newcomer to Fodor talk forums. I've been seeking help for an upcoming trip (see my most recent 10/22 post about my itinerary at;dirtyBit=1).

I've used the trip reports others have done and they can be very helpful. However, sometimes they run the risk of sounding like a gripe session. From personal travel experience, no trip ever goes off without a single hitch!!

However, because I'm new, I've never done a trip report. BUT I promise to do one for my first post-Fodors forum trip!

claire_bluesky Oct 21st, 2007 09:44 PM

That's odd wanderlust as I think that most people leave out the negatives. I've often thought that I'd appreciate knowing them so as to avoid them.

Myers, I too enjoy others' trip reports but I think often people tend to read them mostly if they are planning to go to the same destination or if they have been there and really love love the destination. It can be disappointing, reasonable or not, to receive few responses since it does take a lot of time. It's hard to keep in mind that many travellers use them in the future.

PS-I'm in Zion now. I remember your report. :-)

Dukey Oct 21st, 2007 10:46 PM

I agree with Claire. And please don;t forget, there are a LOT of reasons some people post trip reports other than just to "report."

Reports can be time-consuming and even a brief "Thanks for posting" is appreciated and we often don't see those.

How many times have people complained that such and such a location never seems to be mentioned?

But that's the nature of boards such as this one.

Dukey Oct 21st, 2007 10:50 PM

There's a new one from the folks in Missouri...go there and thank that person!

wildblueyonder Oct 22nd, 2007 01:22 AM

Oh, you've pricked my conscience, because, although I did post a trip report of our 2004 trip to SW USA (and had favourable feedback from it), I didn't post on, on here, of our trip last year to the Pacific NW, Rockies and Yellowstone...

I'm not sure what people want to get from the reports - particularly as, not being young fit folk, we don't do much in the way of hiking and also, we tend to eat and move, so there are few restaurants but many fast food joints!

But I do love reading peoples' trip reports myself and I get a lot of help from this board, so, here are the urls to my websites with lots of pictures and a load of garbage writing, which might be helpful to somebody!

Last year's trip to Seattle-Cascades-Yellowstone-Glacier-Banff

and this is 2004's trip to Phoenix-GC-Utah parks (too brief)-Vegas-LA-Yosemite-San Fran

(and here's this year's short trip to the Algarve, Portugal!

For more exciting, adventurous reports, there's always Meanie! :)

Myer Oct 22nd, 2007 02:49 AM

I have to tell what caused me to start this thread.

I went to Bryce, Zion, GC and Sedona last June.

I asked a lot of questions and got a lot of answers. I read trip reports which I consider answers to questions that were not asked recently.

Now I'm planning another trip to Utah. This time to the Moab area.

I've particularly gone back and reread reports written by Carrie and Maria as well as a few others. I've also reread many of the non-report posts by Dayle and utahtea and others as well.

Sometimes you have specific questions and sometimes you get ideas for places to add to your trip.

I can just think of missing the likes of Horseshoe Bend, The Best Dam View and Antelope Canyon all near Page, AZ because I didn't know they existed.

Somebody complained that people only read reports because either they've been to the location or are planning a trip there. Isn't that what it's all about?

Reliving our experiences and planning new ones.

If a post or report doesn't fall into one of those categories, I just take a quick look at the heading and read a few lines. That's how I add potential trip destinations to my futures list.

Maggi Oct 22nd, 2007 03:34 AM

Good topic, Myer. I love reading reports, even if I don't plan to go there. As you said, sometimes it piques your interest in a location you might not otherwise have considered.

I keep a diary while I am on the trip for my own purposes, so I will remember everything when I get home. If I can, I use my laptop and if there is an internet connection I post it directly to Fodors. That's one way of my having a back-up in case something happens to my computer.

I think sometimes people will post travel questions on different sites at once and sometimes they even forget to come back to retrieve the answers.

For those not getting hits on their trip reports, it would be nice if people reading them did post a short reply. That would top it off and the report someone labored over would not get lost in the shuffle.

Devonmcj Oct 22nd, 2007 03:47 AM

I wrote a trip report after asking a lot of questions about the Canadian Rockies, and getting great advice from many posters. I'll be darned if I can find that report now. I've done a search every way I can and it still doesn't show up. So could it be that some people did write reports that then disappeared into Fodors netherland?

Myer Oct 22nd, 2007 04:51 AM


I found your report:

Hope the link works.

Myer Oct 22nd, 2007 04:57 AM


Well, that didn't work very well but I found your report by clicking on your name and going down several pages of posts.

starrsville Oct 22nd, 2007 05:13 AM

Here ya go, devon -;tid=35026059

starrsville Oct 22nd, 2007 05:15 AM

This question has come up a lot. Quite a few people said they didn't want to subject themselves to the criticisms - especially regarding grammar, spelling, etc.

It's a shame. The more TRs, the stronger this board is as a resource, IMO.

Myer Oct 22nd, 2007 05:24 AM


Thanks for posting the link properly.

It's funny about people opening themsleves up to criticism. I am most amused when I reread what I wrote.

I find that people get attacked after complaining about something. Seldom about their experiences in a trip report.

I complained about not being able to find a gas station between the expressway and airport in Phoenix. At $6. a gallon to have the car rental refill the car I was a bit annoyed.

Well, I was accused of not reading the fine print, etc. That's not what I was complaining about.

I did question the practice of charging so much extra to return a car rental to a different location. In my case the car a license plates for the destination. But again, I knew this on the way in.

Even with the negatives to posting, trip reprts are very valuable to those planning trips.

maj Oct 22nd, 2007 06:03 AM


Love your trip reports. I actually like all the details -- they help while planning trips. And the pictures are great!

be_6489 Oct 22nd, 2007 06:10 AM

I'm fairly new to this forum and had a few questions a few months ago about my trip to NY. I just posted my first post on the board and frankly found that it's kinda boring. Don't get me wrong, I had a great time on my trip but since I really didn't "do" any touristy things, I think it might be a bit boring to other readers. I'm not sure whether I would post another report, however I'm hoping that if I need to ask questions in the future, someone would be willing to respond.

Devonmcj Oct 22nd, 2007 06:22 AM

Well, thanks Myer and Starrsville. Your search skills are outstanding (or mine are very bad).

Myer Oct 22nd, 2007 06:22 AM


I just read your report.

You indicated where you stayed and your opinion.

You told us where you ate and your opinion.

You told us what you did and saw.

Oh yes, somebody asked you a question that you didn't answer.

Hey, we all have diffferent styles. You told your stories and I'm sure they'll help somebody else.

Aduchamp1 Oct 22nd, 2007 06:23 AM

I think trip reports should be streamlined.

Have a sense of wonder, fun, and humor
Give relevant information
Make it your own trip
Give a point of reference. This was the first time I ate chicken feet.

Omit who you sat next to on a plane or what time it arrived unless it is unusual. A flight delay is not unusual.
Omit what time you woke up or when you took a nap
Think of words besides yummy and awesome that will help the reader understand the situation.
Edit your report. There is a old bromide, "I would have written a shorter letter but i did not have the time."

wildblueyonder Oct 22nd, 2007 06:55 AM

be, I read you NYC report too and found it very interesting and useful for my visit next year. Thanks!

socialworker Oct 22nd, 2007 06:56 AM

Well, an interesting thread....the only thing I really *expect* of people is that if they "desperately" needed a certain kind of hotel or other specific info and they got answers back...I want to know where they stayed or where they ate and how it worked out! Maybe it is more out of cuiosity than anything else, but I really feel that I have been left hanging if I never find out how the "story" ended. :)

be_6489 Oct 22nd, 2007 06:57 AM

Thanks Myer - I just replied to the question, thanks for the heads up.

be_6489 Oct 22nd, 2007 06:59 AM

Hi WildBlueYonder - Glad you liked the report. I'm glad that it wasn't as boring as I thought. If I do write reports in the future I will also keep in mind Auchamps comments.

bugswife1 Oct 22nd, 2007 08:10 AM

I used to write reports. I also wrote many indepth reviews on NY theater. I gave up.

Now, I post very infrequently and keep my responses short and to the point. I have also stopped responding to many posts that I could answer. Why? I can't stand the nitpicking, sniping, the posters desperate to prove you wrong about something, getting the 'you actually liked that?' attitude, and the ripping apart of the original posts. Now, I try to just answer questions where someone has not gotten many responses and needs help, and that is it.

iamq Oct 22nd, 2007 09:30 AM

I remember once a poster actually retyped the OP's trip report and sectioned it into paragraphs to make it easier to read and reposted it. She thought she was being "helpful". I thought it was pretty heavy handed. I wonder if the OP ever came back after that?

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