TripAdvisor facilitates searches for safety related reviews

TripAdvisor on Tuesday introduced a new search filter that makes
it easier for TripAdvisor users to find safety-related reviews for hotels, attractions and restaurants.

TripAdvisor said the filter will more easily surface reviews
from the past 12 months about sexual assaults and sexual misconduct by employees.
Reviews regarding other safety categories will be “added on a rolling
basis.” 

The filter will also more easily surface all new reviews
that have information about sexual assault, death, drugging, sex trafficking,
armed robbery and physical assault.

In addition, TripAdvisor has placed a text notice on reviews
with safety content to help travelers distinguish them from other reviews.

“The need for better access to safety information while
traveling has never been greater,” Lindsay Nelson, president of core
experience at TripAdvisor, wrote in a blog post.
“Today’s culture of always-on news has made it increasingly difficult to
discern fact from fiction, while safety-related information about specific
neighborhoods or businesses is often hard to find or nonexistent online. Often,
something tragic must happen in order to engage in a dialogue about traveler
safety, which by then is far too late.”

Nelson said companies are encouraged to publicly respond to
reviews to communicate what they have done to address traveler concerns.

She also said more safety features are coming to
TripAdvisor.

“Throughout the coming months, we’ll be conducting
extensive user research to understand what features will provide the most
benefit to our global community (for example, whether a hotel has 24/7 security
or the surrounding neighborhood is walkable at night),” she wrote. “Additionally,
we look forward to working with the global tourism industry to highlight safety
as a basic human expectation for travelers.”

In late 2016, TripAdvisor began flagging hotels and resorts
where reviewers alleged they were sexually assaulted, following a number of consumer press reports detailing allegations against
resorts in Mexico.

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