Consumer Complaints and Reviews
I have fake reviews from a competitor that came on 20 minutes of the 3 hours tour and complained about things we don't offer. I have guests that are showing me screenshots of reviews they wrote after enjoying the tour and TripAdvisor isn't posting them. My sales have been destroyed. It is baffling that there isn't a double sided review process like uber. Accountability makes people straighten up and think twice about falsifying reviews but why on earth are the good reviews not showing up!!! This is crazy!!! And there's no response from TripAdvisor. None. Worst customer service EVER. Worst review site EVER. I am actually consoled that others are having the same problems and will be making strong efforts for public awareness.
I attempted to book a hotel room through TripAdvisor. I selected from a list of available rooms at the hotel I wanted, entered all my (saleable) data including name, address, phone, credit card info on their page, hit enter, and got "sorry, this room is NOT AVAILABLE". It offered me another room, I selected it and hit enter, again not available. I tried 2 or 3 more of their fake room offerings before realizing I'd been had. This was a busy hotel that was filling up fast and TripAdvisor was showing rooms that were probably long gone. But they can still sell my info to mailing lists and make out nicely. I've noticed the increasing monetization of their website but never imagined they would sink this low. Done with TripAdvisor.
I made 3 hotel reservations listed by 3 different booking agents on TripAdvisor. I became concerned after reading other reviews re: TripAdvisor on Consumer Affairs and emailed TripAdvisor with only one (1) question. Are these 3-booking agents legitimate? I sent emails to Mr. Valerio ** from TripAdvisor Support, who would never provide me a direct answer. Mr. ** danced around the issue through all 3 emails. His answer, "we recommend you to contact the company through which you booked your vacation." Great! This is like saying, "we want you to order the steak at ** fancy restaurant (this steak we secretly know to be tainted), but after you try the steak and become seriously ill, do not call us. Please call the ** fancy restaurant for help."
The outcome for my refund from the 3-booking agents is still in limbo, but I gave deposits to these booking agents of $392.06, $372, and $285. Finally, at the end of their mail, TripAdvisor states, "Please call us at +44 203 318 5019 if you need further information." Wonderful! They expect me to pay for a long distance cell phone call to somewhere in Europe but will only provide 0.00 support.
We like to look at TripAdvisor for advice and ideas; so will continue using the site for that reason. The problem is there is no way to directly contact them for questions or help and when I submitted an answer to a question my profile picture was a picture they should not have had access to; they are supposed to use the Facebook avatar and this picture has never been a Facebook avatar. So between not being able to directly ask them without closing my account of how they got that picture and the fact that they accessed a picture they should not have been able to, I will not ever join or answer questions for them again!
The company as a whole is absolutely horrible. Wholly incompetent, continuous screwups, avoidance of customer help, dishonest. And barely gets you any booking ever anyway. I'd go with anyone but these jerks.
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TripAdvisor is no longer credible. Reviews are not accurate, are posted by property owners, not guests, and do not reflect the value or safety of a hotel. TripAdvisor has no two-way communication of any kind, therefore cannot improve or correct errors.
False advertising. I recently booked a week at a Marriott hotel directly through Marriott's website at $272 per night. Today I received an email from TripAdvisor stating a much lower rate $218 per night was available and provided a link to book. After speaking with Marriott they told me I would have to cancel my current reservation and rebook. When I clicked on TripAdvisor's link the cost for 6 nights was 1632 which is exactly 272 per night. After waiting on hold for 40 minutes with TripAdvisor they informed me pricing is given to them by the hotel. I once again called the hotel who claims they don't know anything about TripAdvisor and 218 per night. Seems there is some kind of scam going on with TripAdvisor.
I don't believe 1/2 of what is on TripAdvisor. We have stayed at multiple hotels that got rave reviews, at least 4 out of 5 stars, and were extremely disappointed. Also I signed up on TripAdvisor and put in 3 reviews, 2 were positive and one negative. The Negative review never showed up on the site. I believe they are being paid by the hotels and use professional writers most of whom never visited a single site. Read the glowing reviews from several contributors and you will see the exact same language being used.
I was booking a flight from New York to Valencia Spain. In the filter blank I wrote NYC-Valencia Spain, so it gave me some results. I chose the first one (which is very cheap), and I follow all the instruction and paid. When I got the email I realized the departure location is in New Jersey. I have part of the responsibility because I should read carefully. But also TripAdvisor should be responsible, because the result is not consistent with what I put in the filter blank and I trusted it, so I didn't check!
As an owner of an apartment rental business and No. 1 in my TripAdvisor category as well as Trivago and booking.com I was surprised to receive a poor review. The review mention various details that proved that the reviewer had not actually stayed with us. For instance they weren't happy with the breakfast buffet (we don't and never have offered a breakfast buffet) and also the apartment's terrace (this apartment has not been available for over a year) and also that they had been part of a wedding party (we haven't catered for a wedding party in over a year).
I asked a advisor to contact the client to supply a receipt or booking number to prove they stayed with us but was refused. My complaint was literally replied to within 3 minutes. No recourse was available. At the same time I was being quoted 1700€ by become an enhanced member. I was told that if I had paid them my complaint would have been reviewed. I replied I would happily pay the money to be removed from their pages. How can any potential clients trust a review website that doesn't verify the reviewer actually ate or stayed at the establishment. Unfair, inaccurate and unsubstantiated reviews to not give any confidence in their business model and I suggest users get their information from sites such as booking.com where you can only leave a review after they have stayed. Avoid.
My wife booked travel through TripAdvisor. They used a third party to confirm the travel, Agoda. We tried to cancel the trip and got confirmation the cancellation was confirmed but never got reimbursed for the $800+ charged to our card. We tried to work with Agoda but never got anywhere. Bad experience. Still $800+ out.
On Dec 28, 2016, while on vacation in Dominican Republic my friend and I went to a Karaoke Bar named EL CAFECITO KARAOKE BAR, IN Santo Domingo, somebody put a drug in my beer bottle, possibly, **, because the side effects, blurred vision, poor coordination, impaired judgment, I was asked to write down stuff. I was asked to pay the bill. I don't have a recollection of doing any of these acts. I was not on control of my actions, thanks God, I induced vomiting. I recovered very quickly, realizing what has happened to me. I recalled, a man in the bar, offering to drive me home, possibly to continue the assault or end my life! This is serious!!!
Buyer beware of renting a vacation house through the TripAdvisor. We had a terrible experience renting a so-called beach house for $200/night for one week in Baja California. We arrived in a dark rainy night, coming across the following undisclosed issues. When we opened a case with TripAdvisor, all we received was lip service (Case No: **). Currently, the Trip Advisor is advertising the same place for $250/night by the same owner. We seriously hope that you don't have to go through the same experience. This is especially true, when TripAdvisor blatantly ignores serious health-related issues such as mice droppings (a Hantavirus concern), and continues to advertise the same property to the public. I have attached a few of more than a dozen pictures that we forwarded to Trip Advisor to no avail.
The roof was leaking into the house in several places. The heating system was not working. The hot water system working sporadically. WIFI not working in spite of our efforts. Microwave oven was not working. The regular oven not operational. There were no cooking utensils, as promised. There were lots of mice droppings in the kitchen and pantry (Hantavirus concern). We discovered this one the next morning.
I went to TripAdvisor to research hotels. I found that sorting by price and choosing a brand that I'd stayed before worked for me. I didn't use the sort by rating feature or read any reviews. I'd only do that if I was comparing brands where there was more of an unknown factor. Although, I do want to make sure there are more than a few reviews so I know the hotel is being used. There were a couple cool features that made TripAdvisor stand out for me. They let me book my hotel using my TripAdvisor account, which they didn't used to offer. Also, if I write a review about the hotel I stayed at, the Trip will send me a $20 Amazon gift card.
Last August I decided to give it a try to TripAdvisor Vacation rental. Decided for a place in Phuket, Thailand and paid the deposit. Everything schedule for December. November, before paying the balance, I sent a note to the local company asking to confirm my rental. Then I got the "NO, we don't have any reservation under your name or Tripadvisor for this properties. Sorry we are sold out." After many calls to the customer service, I had to put them in contact to the Thailand rental company to confirm that there was no place for me to go.
Then, about 10 days later I got the deposit back. Then, started again to try to find a place to stay and found one in a reputable rental website. However, much higher cost, since was just 20 days before my vacation. And heard from TripAdvisor staff that they can do nothing in this case. Looks like the deposit is just a one way thing. Now imagine if I just have trusted them and paid the balance and get ready to travel, arriving in Phuket and finding out that we don't have a house? Very poor business model. Stay away!
It was relatively easy and I just love the site. Lots of info and testimonials and we found the guides/trips we took through Europe and Asia to be accurate as described, and most professional, courteous and friendly.
Have found guides, hotels, and restaurants. Very good site for comparing and contrasting value. Generally accurate. Have been very satisfied with the help provided to us in planning many trips both in the United States and abroad.
I tried to book three times to go on vacation, and 3 owners, kept canceling my dates as people already there, wanted to add in additional dates at the last second. They sent me the quote, then suddenly I get "canceled"??? It's super annoying when you THINK you are "locked in" with a pricey deposit only to have to scurry to find someplace else. They ended up telling me about another "studio" in the same building, which I took, despite the one terrible review. Time was running out. It's the same price as the "updated" unit, I got booted from.
Right now, I have waited 2 days for the owner to tell me if "their taxi driver" can pick me up or not. I am handicapped and I made it known. NOT RESPONDING to a customer who has paid you in full is just wrong. TA sent me a link to get 20% off from Viator, but they are subcontractors of TA. They have airport transfers that you have to pay in full ahead of time. The day sailing excursions have NO DETAILS about where the pick up is, and there is no place to ask and no number to call. If there is no phone number, that is a huge red flag.
I visit TripAdvisor before every trip I take to make sure I'm prepared and visit all the highlights of whatever city I'm traveling to. It's great because it gives you insight to honest reviews, images, and tips from other travelers.
TripAdvisor advertised a room for $57.00 dollars a night. I even had my fiance in a different city logged onto the site to review with me what I was seeing and considering. When we saw the offer for a Super 8 with excellent reviews, close to where we wanted to be and an excellent price, I booked. The hotel stay was wonderful. The price I was charged was anything but! How $57.00 dollars a night for a three-night stay turned into a $318.00 for the three nights is inexcusable! I called customer service, their service through CANCELON. I was told it was impossible, I could have never seen or been offered that rate. Wrong!!! Two people in different cities viewed the offer for $57.00.
Customer service seemed to be in another country and pretty much all but told me I was seeing things that were not there. We were happy with our accommodations and decided to extend our stay. Guess what??? We were charged less for the additional night than we were charged per night through TripAdvisor. $77.00 per night for the last minute additional night rather than the BAIT AND SWITCH PRICE OF TRIPADVISOR OF $106.00 A far cry from the $57.00 per night advertised...
I mostly use TripAdvisor to determine which activities are worthwhile when traveling. I have also used it to get reviews on hotels and restaurants/bakeries. It has been very helpful when planning trips.
I like the reviews by the other people. It is useful to me to see the opinions of others. I like the way TripAdvisor is set up so you can get an idea of what to expect from the places I will be going to see and stay.
There weren't any additional costs that I'm aware of. I go to this site mainly to read reviews to help plan my trips. I like the fact that I can download certain cities for offline viewing as well. Very convenient!
TripAdvisor, to me, is very trustworthy. I can find everything I am looking for, from Hotels to Price to Activities. Example, before taking a cruise with my family of 8, I found a reputable snorkeling trip that was well below the ship's offered excursion and noticed their packed boats of people while we enjoyed a Catamaran of 25 people. What a difference. I always use TripAdvisor when traveling especially reviews of hotels. It's easy to weed out the petty and deceitful lies people write about. I have found more great places this way.
TripAdvisor keeps up to date info about places and has the most detailed accurate info I've found. They also send frequent offers for discounts on flights, hotels, auto etc. And they have a fun to use app to use to write your own reviews.
When I booked a villa in Florida this year it started ok, but then they sent an invitation for a villa which by description looked like the one I had booked. Sent monies only to find out it was another and I had lost my deposit.
I have consistently used this site for many years now. I appreciate that one can pick and choose categories of reviews that you want to read. For instance those reviews by people who are closer in age to you, or couples with kids etc. etc. I have also contributed many reviews. The site helps me to fine tune my trips and itineraries.
WARNING! Don't EVER, EVER, EVER book a reservation through Trip Advisor! If you do, be prepared to be offered rooms that are not available, have your reservation totally screwed up and pay a 20% fee for these "services". First of all, in no place do they inform you that you are being charged a 20% premium when you book through them. And then they KEEP sending you emails offering rooms that are not available or that your inquiry has expired when, in fact, one has already booked the room.
Book directly with the establishment. Trip Advisor does not communicate with the places they advertise so they are selling something they do not own and cannot deliver. After they cheat you, they will not refund the 20% they ripped you off for under any circumstances nor will they admit culpability. The customer service agent refuses to pass the customer up the chain to a superior after they refuse to take any action on your complaint. They refuse to take any kind of responsibility for the fact that they do not keep up with availability of rooms from the hotels they book for.
I used Tingo Travel service to book a room for 2 nights with the understanding that I could cancel the 2nd night as long as I gave 24 hours' notice. They said it was dependent on the hotel's policy. The hotel had no issue with giving me a refund for the 2nd night, but Tingo would not allow for that, telling me it was the hotel causing the non-refund when actually it was them. Tingo is owned by TripAdvisor. Why is TripAdvisor even booking rooms now? It seems that is a conflict of interest.
I have been on TripAdvisor for about 5 years, have written 98 reviews and got lots of helpful hint votes from other travelers. I was discouraged when I noticed some recent reviews had not been published about hotels I had stayed at. It had come down to a review I had written about an Irish bar in China, it was terrible, especially seeing a western man managing the place and parading his 3-year child around a smoky bar, notwithstanding the food was terrible and the service, the place deserved the negative review it got.
TripAdvisor had then decided to stop publishing my review (I've written about 4 negative reviews out of 98). TripAdvisor aside from being virtually uncontactable have only responded by saying it didn't meet their guidelines...? It's ridiculous that they have now even removed the review... it seems to me TripAdvisor is now a absolute con. They should be held accountable for removing legitimate reviews. They cannot be in the business. They are a pick and choose! And since that review they are not even publishing my other reviews. I will not operate with them anymore but I fully intend to support any effort to bring TripAdvisor and their con of a business to everyone's attention.
ConsumerAffairs Research Team
The ConsumerAffairs Research Team believes everyone deserves to make smart decisions. We aim to provide readers with the most up-to-date information available about today's consumer products and services.
TripAdvisor is one of the world's largest travel websites. It primarily relies on user-generated content to help travelers choose destinations and activities that interest them.
- Travel guides: User-generated travel guides help tourists find destinations and activities that appeal to them.
- Vacation rentals: TripAdvisor lets travelers browse vacation rentals by city.
- Mobile app: Travelers can download TripAdvisor's mobile app to use on the go.
- Ratings: Ratings make it easy for travelers to focus on an area's best features.
- In-flight features: TripAdvisor lets travelers search for flights that offer specific features, including Wi-Fi, power outlets and free baggage.
- Best for Domestic, international and budget travelers.
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