The travel website that compiles millions of holidaymakers’ star ratings could face legal action – hotel owner Duncan Bannatyne complains the consumer resource is bad for business
In quiet moments, Jared Blank likes to kick back by looking at reviews of the world’s greatest hotels on TripAdvisor. Specifically, the terrible reviews. Blank is a long-time analyst of the travel industry, and a user of TripAdvisor – the consumer review site that has become one of the world’s biggest travel resources, attracting 41.6 million users a month, and featuring 40m reviews of hotels and restaurants worldwide. But the pettiness and hysteria of some of the complaints never fail to astonish.
“No melon is ever ripe enough for people on TripAdvisor,” he says. “There are hotels that rate in the top five in the world, and people are still complaining. I’m always shocked by the comments: from the quality of the fruit, to the mobile-phone reception on an island in the middle of nowhere, to whether the person on the front desk was smiling sufficiently upon their arrival. It blows my mind.”