While it’s general knowledge that some reviews on TripAdvisor are fraudulent, antitrust officials in Italy slammed the travel review site with a monster fine exceeding the U.S. equivalent of $600,000 for “misleading consumers.”
The Italian authorities claimed that visitors were unable to distinguish between genuine and fake reviews. Moreover, TripAdvisor failed to have adequate system checks to identify reviews that are phony and demanded payment within thirty days.
There have been many reports over the years of fake reviews on TripAdvisor. Some positive reviews are posted by the hotels themselves while quite a few negative reviews actually come from competitors. Indeed, some negative reviews by legitimate guests have resulted in fines to these guests by properties.
Despite the Italian ruling, the bottom line is the same… TripAdvisor is a worthy website for travel reviews but don’t bet everything on these reviews. Once you kick out those that are ridiculously glowing and those that simply use terms like bad, negative, or no customer service without identifying anything specific, the remainder in the middle may give you a better idea of real experiences with these travel providers. Nevertheless, as always, your personal experiences may be different.
Please note: If/when you do come across one of the reviews I have posted, it is definitely legit 🙂