I occasionaly check places data on google maps, foursquare and facebook places, wikimapia and osm. I sometimes fix wrong information or add missing data to places i know on these platforms.
Recently, i was checking hotels on Tripadvisor and noticed that they have way too much information to be fixed or added and wanted to help them, but i didn’t know it was too hard at the beginning. I was just expecting something similar to platforms i’ve been familiar.
Tripadvisor providing a way to update places listed similar to other platforms but very strict. And they’re separating hotels & places strictly and updating information for hotels way to hard.
To update hotel information, they’re not shutting down doors to visitors but making their life very hard if they decide to help them.
First, there is no “Update Information” link for hotels on their site, you have to dig deep to find a way to do that. After some search, i found their link to update business information. And nicely explained what they needed to update.
They have an actual team to process business information updates for hotels and real people are responding via email if they need more information.
It was rather easy to fix some of the hotels information appeared in wrong districts, they responded fast&kind and fixed those. But i am stuck with one hotel listed as Specialty Lodging. Tripadvisor resisted all my attempts and didn’t fix that information no matter what i tried.
The hotel has 250 rooms, they provide everything expected from a 5 star hotel but unfortunately they’re a “spam business” That’s what i call companies only focused on maximum savings and minimum expense. Because of they’re a spam hotel, they don’t have IT department, they don’t have a guest relations team and, they have a management team doesn’t even know what internet or social media is. Their website is poorly designed just to have a website, and not updated even once since the hotel is founded 6 years ago.
So i naively alerted tripadvisor to just fix listing of hotel. The hotel is listed as “Specialty Lodging” but should be listed as hotel among other hotels, so a traveler can list hotels in a district and compare them. Currently you can’t see this hotel in among other hotels because it’s categorized as a small pension or motel and you can only see that hotel if you’re checking budget lodgings.
One guy from Tripadvisor support team replied my email and said,
“Hotel should meet minimum requirements listed below to be categorized as hotel;
- A 24-hour front desk
- Daily housekeeping included in the room rate
- Private bathroom for each unit
- If there is a minimum-stay requirement, it must be no more than 3 nights”
It looked very funny and an ancient procedure coming from 1999 to me. But i didnt give up and had a conversation with the guy. In summary, he insisted the hotel must list all these four requirements on it’s official website.
That seemed like a deadlock to me because the hotel made a website 6 years ago and didn’t write these. But then, i checked other hotels listed in tripadvisor as hotel and their official webpages.
Guess what. None of the hotels are mentioning “A 24-hour front desk” on their webpages. I tried to discuss this with the support but, eventually support remained silent.
few days later, i noticed the hotel in fact declared that they have a 24-hour front desk and Daily housekeeping included in the room rate official. And in somewhere better than their official webpage. In tripadvisor.
Apparently someone from the hotel declared this requirement sometime and made it’s way to official hotel info section of tripadvisor’s hotel page. I sent a screenshot of that to tripadvisor and requested again but no luck. tripadvisor said that the hotel management should apply for this change.
At this point the only thing i can do is calling the general manager of hotel and explain this and teach him to fix their social media appearance. Which is ridiculous.
So, the hotel listed as specialty lodging for 6 years and will be listed like that for 6 more years apparently.
Currently tripadvisor is just lucky because there is no real competitor when it comes to hotel reviews. Booking.com’s reviews are more reliable because only actual travelers making reservation through booking.com can review hotels but i don’t feel like booking.com’s reviews will ever replace tripadvisor.
Tripadvisor’s luck will continue until a real competitor emerges.