How Important Are Hotel Reviews?
Because of affordable plane tickets, more and more Filipinos are packing their bags and flying to far-off cities in the Philippines and countries around the world. But of course, everyone traveling means fighting with millions of Filipinos looking to book that piso fare flight to Boracay. And getting those last two seats is only the first half of the battle. You also have to contend with accommodations.
Websites like Agoda.com have become trusted names in hotel booking. One of Asia’s leading hotel booking sites, Agoda.com conducted its latest Travel Smarts survey, which reveals how much travelers rely on hotel booking sites. In this year’s survey, carried out in March 2014, they asked 65,000 Agoda.com customers how important hotel reviews are to them, how many hotel reviews they generally read before they book, and if they would book at a hotel that had no reviews. And what they found was interesting: travelers heavily rely on them.
“Choosing a hotel is influenced heavily by word of mouth, so it’s not surprising that reviews from fellow travelers play a huge role in the decision process,” says Timothy Hughes, Agoda.com’s VP of Marketing. “With over 7 million verified customer reviews to rely on, Agoda.com customers can get a great idea of what people just like them – or unlike them – think of the hotel they’re looking at.”
According to Agoda.com’s survey, hotel reviews are important to families with young children (66%), couples (63%), families with older children (63%), solo travelers (60%), and business travelers (58%)
According to the survey, looking at 1 to 10 hotels before booking is enough for business travelers (73%), family with young children (63.1%), solo travelers (62.3%), families with older children (60.2%), and couples (60%)
When it came to researching hotels, the majority of travelers (based on countries with over 100 respondents), over 63%, looked at 1 to 10 properties before making their choice. Twenty-six percent looked at between 11 and 25, and just over 10% looked at 25 or more.
However, when it came to business travelers, 74% looked at 10 or fewer hotels before booking, a full 10% more than the average. Unsurprisingly, business travelers also placed the least importance on hotel reviews, with 43% saying that they did not play a significant part in determining their hotel choice, versus 38% for all other traveler types.
Filipino business travelers are the opposite as they usually rely on reviews, with 80% saying reviews are important. This was followed by the Indians (68%), Chinese (66%), Malaysians (64%) and Vietnamese (62%) business travelers. On the other hand, Japanese business travelers (59%) are the least likely to rely on hotel reviews. Other nationalities who said reviews are not so important are Australian (53%), French (51%), UK (46%), and American (39%) business travelers.
What was clear from the results is that customer reviews play a large part in helping most travelers determine which hotel they will be staying at. Though business travelers were the exception, the vast majority of non-business travelers–77% – said that they would not book a hotel that did not have any reviews. We’ve seen too many horror movies set in hotels to not trust an establishment that has no reviews!
Just like researching on the city or country we’re visiting, it’s also important to research on where we’re staying, because hotels, hostels, and lodges serve as our home in unfamiliar territory, the place where we can be safe thousands of miles away. There are plenty of things to consider, and these depend on what you want. Do you want it to be near public transportation? Near a mall? Or do you want large bathrooms? Before booking, list the kind of place you want to stay in the next few days. You’ll have an easier time finding the right hotel for you. Happy hunting!
Do you have any tips on finding the perfect hotel? Share it with us!
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How Important Are Hotel Reviews?