Hotel owners complain of being held ‘hostage’ by TripAdvisor users

Hotel owners complain of being held ‘hostage’ by TripAdvisor users

Detailed by The Telegraph this week, a group of hotels and restaurants in England are noticing an increased number of direct blackmail threats from patrons in regards to leaving a negative TripAdvisor review. Much of the hotel industry, especially bed & breakfast lodging, is dependent on sites like TripAdvisor to increase booking volume during the year. To initiate the threat, the customer usually mentioned that they are a regular TripAdvisor user and will post a negative review about their visit if a demand is not met. Demands include freebies during a meal like a bottle of wine or dessert, a reduction of the total bill or room upgrades.

Speaking about the blackmail threats, British Hospitality Association deputy chief executive Martin Couchman said “ While it’s very difficult to put an exact figure on how widespread the problem is, it is clear that a small minority of online reviewers are directly blackmailing – or sometimes subtly blackmailing – restaurants for their own gain .”

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