In the pre digital days, resources such as 'Lonely Planet' and 'Rough Guides', provided travellers with useful background and information. Thesedays, TripAdvisor seems to have usurped these publications.
Personally TripAdvisor is the site I turn to first, when I begin my own travel plans. In 2013 and 2014, Trip Advisor provided me and my travel companion with fantastic reviews about hotels and attractions, that made planning our itenary and then, pre-booking accomodation online a breeze, for our trip to Europe.
TripAdvisor's greatest strength is that information is provided by fellow travellers and is updated on a regular basis, based upon their experience. Reviewers have their own styles and biases and the most insightful reviews consider what a traveller "needs to know" and will also consider "special interest appeal and audiences" of some attractions.
A negative is TripAdvisor's remoteness, to be able to contact the site controllers, if attractions or restaurants actually close down. It also has its share of whingers, who want to get their own back on a restaurant or attraction, they were disappointed with. Some travellers also seem to have very unrealsistic expectations and complain about prices of restaurants around iconic locations, such as the Duormo in Florence, or Sydney Harbour, in the area of the Opera House, or whinge about room sizes and small lifts in Europe, where such elements are the norm, rather than unusual, in retrofitted buildings.Unless you are staying in a modern, purpose built hotel things are on a smaller scale expect small dimensions!
I am a regular TripAdvisor. As such, I have gained "Top Contributor" status. I enjoy sharing my experiences of restaurants, attractions and accomodation online, if they are likely to benefit others. It is equally a great vehicle for loading up some favourite travel photos.
According to the latest update from TripAdvisor, I have helped well over 400,000 travellers, with information I have provided in my reviews; pretty mindblowing in the context of an audience!
One frustration, is that editing my reviews to perfect spelling and punctuation is not always straight-forward on TripAdvisor. I wish they had their own spell-check, for editorial purposes. I get very embarassed when typos slip through and are permanently out there on TripAdvisor!
On the upside, it's lovely when fellow travellers contact you directly for advice, or attractions offer you a return visit, if you have highlighted partcular concerns and show you how they have addressed them!
I urge anyone reading this to become a TripAdvisor contributor. It is very satisfying and a great way to get useful information and opinions, out to a mass audience!
Look for reviews by "fional943", some examples below.....