Welcome to our official TripAdvisor UK blog. This is where we aim to share our thoughts, quirky updates, new research and anything else we hope you will find useful and interesting.

Thursday, 30 August 2012

TripAdvisor data reveals myth of the moaning Brit

TripAdvisor data reveals myth of the moaning Brit
It has long been said that us Brits are a nation of moaners and with this in mind we set-out to find out whether the label really does fit and TripAdvisor can officially bust that myth – at least when it comes to travel.

Data has revealed that in fact we Brits are among the five most positive nations when it comes to reviewing accommodation properties TripAdvisor. We score an average of 4.1 out of five - higher than almost every other European nation.[1]

South Africa are the brightest bunch, with an average score of 4.22 out of five posted by reviewers there, compared with just 3.8 for the least positive nation of reviewers – Malaysia.[2]
Emma Shaw, TripAdvisor spokesperson, said: “When TripAdvisor was founded, the idea of ‘the wisdom of the crowd’ was still relatively unheard of and there was a fear that people would only want to share their travel horror stories. In fact, our experience over the last twelve years has shown the opposite to be true – people do genuinely want to share their good experiences with the world first and foremost.”
Simon Fried, consumer behavioural psychologist, explains why the majority of consumers are prepared to share their positive experience with others:

“At first it may seem surprising that so many people selflessly contribute for the sake of the common good, but the underlying psychological urges are very strong. In the offline world when we receive a gift or someone does us a favour we are naturally compelled to give back. Now the internet has empowered us to carry this behaviour into the online world,”  

“Secondly, most of us have an image of ourselves as the sort of person that does the right thing. In order to maintain this image we prove it to ourselves by doing a good deed, such as recommending to others something we have enjoyed ourselves.  Both the need to give back and to maintain a consistent self-image are deep-seated urges.”

Data appendix

Table #1: Average TripAdvisor Accommodation Review Rating by Country of Origin

1 South Africa 4.222347
2 Israel 4.168918
3 Russia 4.1614
4 New Zealand 4.134837
5 United Kingdom 4.122071
6 Australia 4.110752
7 Austria 4.101667
8 United States 4.085463
9 Switzerland 4.081924
10 Greece 4.080267
11 Canada 4.079667
12 Ireland 4.070494
13 The Netherlands 4.057945
14 Germany 4.047384
15 Chile 4.043335

[1] See appendix
[2] Calculated from analysis of TripAdvisor review ratings posted in 2011, from all 41 countries whose TripAdvisor members had posted more than 10,000 reviews

Wednesday, 29 August 2012

Brits can’t abide sun lounger hoggers but half of hypercritical Brits get up early to bag a bed

Brits can’t abide sun lounger hoggers but half of hypercritical Brits get up early to bag a bed
While there is no rule book, everyone has their own idea of what counts as acceptable behaviour on the beach and around the pool. TripAdvisor has delved into the minds of us Brits to find out what really gets on our nerves when it comes to the unwritten rules of beach and pool etiquette and the results are in.

In a survey of over *8,000 British travellers we uncovered that despite 84% of Brits believing it to be unacceptable to get up early to reserve a sun lounger, 46% of Brits admit to ‘reserving’ a chair by the pool to avoid the morning rush. And contrary to popular myth, 90% of German travellers also agree the practice is unacceptable, yet only 21% claim they make a dawn dash to secure a poolside seat.

The survey also reveals the top three most annoying beach and pool etiquette violations, according to British travellers:

1.    Littering
2.    Blasting loud music
3.    Inconsiderate divers who make a splash

Public intoxication came in fourth place as a beach and pool etiquette bug bear, with sun-lounger hogging the fifth biggest frustration for British travellers.

Unfortunately, pool hygiene is not such a concern for British travellers - 60% of respondents claim they don’t shower before swimming. Brits aren’t always child-friendly when it comes to sharing the beach either, with 35% saying they would like to see child-free zones.

“While there is no official beach and pool etiquette handbook, it seems that holiday-makers have a very clear list of unwritten rules when it comes to how to behave”, says TripAdvisor spokesperson, Emma Shaw. “And while sun lounger hogging in the past has often been blamed on other nationalities, it appears British holiday-makers are just as guilty.”

 *survey carried out on 8,239 Britons, between 8th and 22nd June 2012

Wednesday, 22 August 2012



The long-awaited and last bank holiday of the year is almost upon us and ahead of this weekend's great getaway, TripAdvisor recently released its UK TripIndex.

A cost comparison of an overnight stay in key cities around the UK, TripAdvisor’s TripIndex reveals the typical costs during the month of August for two people on a city break including a pre-meal cocktail, a meal out, taxis and a night in a hotel.

Birmingham has been crowned the cheapest city, coming in with a total TripIndex value of £139.54. It’s perhaps not surprising that having taken centre stage this summer. London is the priciest city on the list, with a TripIndex value of £264.71 – almost double that of Birmingham.

“With the last bank holiday of the year approaching, many Brits will be thinking about making the most of it with a short UK break. The TripAdvisor TripIndex helps travellers to see which UK cities offer the best value when it comes to core components of a night away,” commented TripAdvisor spokesperson Emma Shaw.
The Midlands emerged as the most affordable part of the UK for a city break, clinching first and second place in the best value list with Birmingham top and Nottingham just behind. At the other end, Scotland is home to three of the most expensive cities – with Edinburgh in third place, Aberdeen in fifth and Inverness in sixth.
When it comes to hotel prices across the 20 cities, although London is the most expensive overall, Edinburgh has the most expensive average rate for a four-star hotel room, coming in at £160.92. For the price of one night in a hotel in Edinburgh, travellers can have almost three nights in a Sheffield hotel.
Top 10 cities to save

  City Hotel (£) Taxi (£) Cocktails for two (£) Dinner(£) Total Cost (£)
1 Birmingham 62.69 10.00 8.50 58.35 139.54
2 Nottingham 64.85 11.60 11.00 53.93 141.38
3 Sheffield 60.49 7.90 18.80 57.45 144.64
4 Liverpool 67.95 9.94 16.00 56.73 150.62
5 Newcastle Upon Tyne 70.88 11.60 15.90 54.33 152.71
6 Leeds 65.34 10.00 15.00 63.10 153.44
7 Glasgow 71.00 8.60 17.40 67.40 164.40
8 Manchester 74.51 8.80 15.00 68.07 166.38
9 Cardiff 87.98 10.60 17.00 51.46 167.04
10 Bristol 77.64 13.40 17.00 61.53 169.57

Top 10 cities to splurge

  City Hotel (£) Taxi (£) Cocktails for two (£) Dinner(£) Total Cost (£)
1 London 155.51 17.70 21.00 70.50 264.71
2 Bath 154.36 13.30 27.00 69.99 264.65
3 Edinburgh 160.92 12.00 18.20 69.53 260.65
4 Brighton 112.51 13.36 14.00 65.53 205.41
5 Aberdeen 99.99 6.80 13.90 69.23 189.92
6 Inverness 120.73 6.40 8.60 52.47 188.2
7 York 99.94 13.21 17.00 55.47 185.62
8 Chester 79.08 7.00 27.00 66.67 179.75
9 Belfast 77.31 6.20 19.90 69.54 172.95
10 Norwich 77.68 10.00 18.00 67.07 172.75

“Recent Olympic fever may well have reignited a love for all the UK has to offer, but on-going economic concerns mean many Brits are still cost-conscious when it comes to travel. By breaking down the common components that make up a UK weekend city break, the TripAdvisor TripIndex allows travellers to smartly compare where their money will go the furthest,” continued TripAdvisor’s Emma Shaw.


More on TripIndex

The hotel cost – one of a traveller’s biggest concerns when setting a holiday budget – is based on data from many TripAdvisor partners, including online travel agencies and direct hotel suppliers, for travel between 1 August and 31 August 2012, providing a highly accurate index.

The UK TripIndex destination list comprises key UK cities based on the top 20 cities most searched on TripAdvisor.co.uk in 2011.

TripIndex prices out the following items in each destination:
· Per night cost a four-star hotel (between 1 August and 31 August 2012)
· Cost of two two mile taxi journeys
· Cost of an alcoholic cocktail (dry martini) – for two
· Cost of a meal for two (starter and main – salad and steak and chips with a bottle of house wine)

Prices were collected through a variety of research methods as outlined below. The ‘basket’ of items – one night’s accommodation, two two-mile taxi journeys; salad starter and steak and chips two course meal with a bottle of house wine and a dry martini – are representative of the items many travellers will purchase while on holiday.

Hotels: Hotel prices shown specify the average cost of a four-star hotel found on TripAdvisor (via partner booking sites such as online travel agencies and direct hotel suppliers) in each destination for the period of 1 August – 31 August 2012). On average, 54 hotels were price-checked to identify the average cost of one night’s accommodation in each city.

Dry Martini: Dry Martini prices shown specify the cost of a traditional dry martini in the main/largest bar in a top-rated five-star hotel on TripAdvisor in each destination. In the destinations where a five-star hotel was not listed on TripAdvisor, a top-rated four-star hotel was chosen.
Dinner for two: Dinner prices shown specify the cost of a two course meal of a salad and steak and chips with a house bottle of wine in a mid-range restaurant in each destination. 
Taxi: Taxi prices shown specify the cost of a two-mile taxi journey (return) in each destination. In most cases, data was obtained from the local council or a large taxi company operating in the area. In the approximately 30% of destinations where such information was not available, data was obtained from destination specialists. Please note taxi prices will vary according to a number of factors, including number of passengers, pick-up/drop-off points, traffic, time of day, method of booking, luggage, etc.

All prices shown are as quoted by source.

New holiday rental properties on TripAdvisor

Villa Nusa, Bali, Indonesia
This stunning, stylish Balinese villa is nestled amongst the trees in Nusa Lembongan with outstanding views over Bali, the sea and Mount Agung.   The property boasts its own infinity pool, indoor/outdoor bathrooms and spacious balconies.  In a peaceful location, the villa is only a few minutes’ walk from the main centre where bars, restaurants, spas, dive centres, surf instruction and more can be found.
 Covent Garden flat, London, England
Centrally located, just five minutes’ walk from Covent Garden, this two bedroom flat is perfectly located for London’s top attractions, including top restaurants, theatres, restaurants, shopping and landmarks.  The flat, newly-refurbished and featuring exposed brick, is located in a beautiful period building. With sleeping space for six people, this flat is a great option for groups or families looking for a comparatively affordable yet luxurious prime London location.
 Court House, Uley, Cotswolds, England
Court House is a Grade I listed holiday home on the Owlpen Estate near Uley, a designated Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. This charming, historic building has a garden with sun terrace, spiral staircase, 3 bedrooms and is within 10 minutes’ walk of of a pub. 
O’Shea Stone House, County Galway, Ireland
A former farmhouse near Ballydavid, Stone House is next to a working farm at the foot of Mount Brandon near County Kerry. The cosy property has an an open fire, woodburning stove, rear garden and plenty of space for the whole family. Outside there is off road parking for two cars and a lawned garden to the rear. O'Shea Stone House is very well placed for enjoying the Dingle peninsula, Mount Brandon, beaches, archaeology and more.
Villa081, Phuket, Thailand
This peaceful villa is situated in the prime location of Layan, just 100 meters from the Laguna Phuket. Nestled in a quiet plantation, it offers a secluded holiday experience whilst providing easy access to the must-sees.  Just a short drive is the pristine Layan beach, the Laguna Resort golf course, local and international restaurants and shopping areas and more. The highlight of the property is the outdoor relaxation area with pool, sofas, sun beds and patio dining.
477 Lido Drive, Lake Tahoe, California
Enjoy amazing panoramic views of Mount Tallac and Lake Tahoe from the rooftop deck, while soaking in your private hot tub. The home features a fully equipped kitchen with granite counters, master suite with a fireplace and jetted tub as well as a pool table, while your private dock can accommodate up to a 40 foot boat.
 Palatial Skies, Oahu, Hawaii
A lovely, uber-luxurious retreat located in the prestigious town of Kahala with beautiful cove beaches in the area.  The sprawling, spacious home features a media room, walk-in shower, indoor/outdoor dining area, gourmet kitchen with top appliances, large pool and extensive outdoor space. 
  Villa Vittorio, Tuscany, Italy
A stunning villa with panoramic views over the towns and villages below and out to the sea.  The villa comprises a high standard of accommodation, including private pool and al fresco dining area, balcony and spacious bedrooms.  The town of Pietrsanta is just 6km away, while Pisa is also within reaching distance of the villa.
Stone House, Mugla, Turkey
This enchanting stone house overlooks the Mediterranean sea and blends rustic charm with modern comforts.  It’s located just 800 metres from a lovely sandy beach and is five minute car ride from the village or Ortakent.  Take in the UNESCO World Heritage site of Xanthos-Letoon when in the area, while boat trips and watersports also prove popular amongst visitors . 
  • 3 bedrooms (sleeps 6)
  •  Starts from £120per night or £836 per week
  • Search ‘enchanting 3 bed stone house’ on www.TripAdvisor.co.uk/vacationrentals  or go here

Traditional Lodge, Lake District, England
This lovely cabin enjoys a peaceful Lake district setting close to Lake Windermere, set within the award winning White Cross Bay Holiday Park, with views of the lake surrounding fells.  The decking is perfectly positioned for the sun during the day, and the evening sun later, ideal for al fresco drinks and dining, while the park offers access to heated indoor swimming pool, sauna and fitness suite, a relaxing bar and a fully licensed restaurant with optional takeaway service. Live entertainment is performed in the bar most weekends during peak the season.  Other activities in the area include sailing, watersports, walking and cycling.


For more information contact Laurel Greatrix / lgreatrix@tripadvisor.com