Expedia.com: We will verify our hotel reviews

Expedia promises “real hotel reviews by real customers”

Just days after completing its spin-off of TripAdvisor, Expedia has announced plans to expand its own online hotel reviews.  The big difference is that Expedia says all its reviews will be verified, to the extent that they will all be written by people who have stayed at the place they review.

At the same time, Stephen Kaufer TripAdvisor’s chief exec dismissed public concern over fake reviews, saying, “Based on the scale at which we operate questions of planted reviews is more of a theoretical concern than a practical concern. The scale totally dominates the equation.”  Kaufer was not able to offer a percentage of how many reviews are fake.

From Barbara De Lollis at USA Today’s Hotel Check-in

If you go to Expedia.com today, you’ll find an overhauled review database that contains some 4 million reviews written by people who Expedia says paid for and stayed in the hotel they wrote about.

“We like to call it the new source of truth, internally,” says John Kim, Expedia’s senior vice president of global products.

The strategy plays off recent stories about fake reviews posted on TripAdvisor, Yelp and other sites that don’t confirm whether an author has actually stayed at a particular property – or if they had some other agenda in writing a review.

“(Customers) have been asking for a source of reviews they can trust,” Kim says, citing stories of a “black market” of fake reviews on other review sites. How widely held a belief that is, however, isn’t clear.

“This has tested off the charts in our internal testing,” he told me. “People love the idea that our reviews are verified so you can’t randomly leave a review.”

How do you write a review on Expedia.com? After you’ve booked a hotel on Expedia and stayed there, Expedia sends you an e-mail that contains a link where you sign into your account. At that point, you’ll be given the option of writing a review for that specific hotel.

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3 responses to “Expedia.com: We will verify our hotel reviews

  1. Expedia has partnered with hotels to rip you off. Lets explain this. I called expedia to book a reservation because I couldn’t get online. The gentleman asked me how much i wanted to spend and I told him. He told me that he had found a nice hotel with flights and all in my range at Celuisma Maya Caribe Cancun. Great no problem their I paid for it. the next day I looked at the internet and it seemed okay. So we arrived in cancun an we can find the hotel??? But wait its nestled in between a large hotel. but to our disbelief its a nightmare . Their cats , chickens running around the pace is dirty and thats just the lobby. But wait I over looked that and was taken to my room at Celuisma Maya Caribe. it got worse the room was dirty smelled like piss and looked nothing like the internet not even the hotel. So i went to the front office and complained to them that me and my two kids would not stay their. One because of the condition of the hotel and to it was not safe the doors in the rooms did not lock well plus next door on the other side no more then 40 feet away is the public beach so crowed that they take over their beach it was just bad.
    They told me to call expedia that they would refund me. In the mean time i had to find anther hotel then this piss hole they called Celuisma Maya i that was charging me 1,103.34 for 5 nights. I ended up at the Intercontinental for 5 night for 896.17 in a first class Hotel.

    That night i spent 2 hours on the phone with expidia and to no availe they just didn’t care that i was straned somewhere with kids. If i didn’t have the money to go somewhere else we would be in trouble. expedia said they would call me back they never did and i already had spent 75 dollar on prepaid phone cards from Mexico. The next day i spend another 75. dollar on the phone with expidia. They said they would refund me once they spoke to the hotel but that no one was available to process the a refund from the hotel. Well before i left Cancun i went back to the hotel and no one was their to process the refund still 5 days later.
    Well forks 2 weeks later no refund and no call from expidia. So I called them they got a refund from the hotel – a day the hotel CALUISMA MAYA CARIBE CANCUN ALSO IS USING OTHER NAMES AND NOT THE PICTURES ON THE INTERNET kept 190.34 dollars for a reservation never used in this piss hole of a place and expedia does nothing about it no help or refund from them. S o i’m out of pocket 340.33 dollars with phone tab and EXPEDIA DOESN’T GIVE A CRAP THEY PROTECT PISS HOLES LIKE THIS! And i go out of the country 6 to 7 times a year and never seen a crap hole like this. You Go EXPEDIA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Truly Yours

    O.Jon Soto

  2. There is no avoiding fake reviews online. Anyone can book one of their own hotel rooms and then just write-off the small Expedia booking fee as a marketing expense. It is totally impossible to make it a fraud-free system at this point.

    Eventually Google will be the ones to circumvent this situation by getting people ratings dished up by people in their circles and extended circles, as well as by reputable authors. Until then, buyer beware, and always read between the lines.

    • Perhaps – but at the moment, Google reviews are even more open to abuse than TripAdvisor and the rest. The problem with peer group reviews like cicles is that they’re unlikely to have wide experience.

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