Although users can't book flights or reservations through TripAdvisor.com, it's one of the most popular sites for reviews of hotels and attractions. Experts and amateurs alike appreciate the huge archive of reviews on this travel site, and say that the accompanying photographs and ranking system come in handy when choosing which hotels and attractions to book in advance. Most also point out, however, that a critical eye is needed when evaluating certain glowing reviews, as many could be fake. TripAdvisor also includes a search engine for hotel bookings and flights that is similar to Kayak.com but falls short in terms of features and number of sites searched.
TripAdvisor.com is recommended quite often for its reviews on hotels and other travel destinations, rather than its search capabilities. TripAdvisor.com is included in two lengthy compilations of travel sites at Travel and Leisure magazine and Kiplinger.com. It's also recommended by BudgetTravel.com. We found older reviews of TripAdvisor.com at The Washington Post and PracticalHacks.com. More than 50 user reviews at Viewpoints.com round out the picture for this travel site.
1. Travel and Leisure
A recent review of travel sites in 28 categories at Travel and Leisure magazine identifies TripAdvisor.com as the top site to "find out what a hotel is really like." Writer Tom Samiljan says the sheer number of reviews at this site outweigh the occasional fake recommendations.
Review: Best Travel Websites, Tom Samiljan, Oct. 2010
Kiplinger.com is a source for personal finance advice and business forecasts. This 2009 update of travel sites by Stacy Rapacon includes TripAdvisor.com as the site with the largest number of hotel guest reviews.
Review: 28 Best Travel Sites, Stacy Rapacon, Aug. 2009
3. Budget Travel
This article briefly discusses the five travel site recommendations of the editors at BudgetTravel.com, based on their experience doing thousands of searches a year. They recommend reading guest reviews at TripAdvisor.com if you aren't sure where you want to stay.
Review: Five Great Travel Booking Sites, Brad Tuttle, May 19, 2009
4. The Washington Post
This older compilation of travel sites focuses mainly on sites that offer special discounts or bargains, although some other types of specialty sites are included. Shapiro says he appreciates the "sheer volume of reviews" available at TripAdvisor.com, though he also notes that site navigation can be a bit cumbersome.
Review: 54 Online Travel Sites to Bookmark Now, Michael Shapiro, Feb. 3, 2008
Viewpoints.com is a user-review site. In the travel category, TripAdvisor.com receives one of the highest averages; users typically cite the number and general quality of reviews available, though a few suggest taking some reviews "with a grain of salt."
Review: TripAdvisor Reviews, Contributors to Viewpoints.com
TripAdvisor.com is noted as a top travel-oriented social networking site in this older listing. The reason is the millions of user-written reviews. The ability to compare rates and book rooms via other online sites is mentioned, but discussion is very brief.
Review: The Ultimate List of Top Travel Sites, "Kevin", Oct. 6, 2008