When will we see an airline passenger bill of rights? Why aren’t there 5-star and 2-star airlines? How do you deal with hotels filling review sites with fake testimonials? These questions came up in a conversation about the travel industry I had the other night. Here’s some possible answers:
When will we see an airline passenger bill of rights?
ANSWER: When there’s a fatality. When someone dies because they were stuck on the tarmac for hours and couldn’t get their insulin, we will get an airline passenger bill of rights.
Why aren’t there 5-star airlines and 2-star airlines? Might some customers pay more for slightly better service, instead of universally bad service?
Consumers increasingly rely on online user reviews to make their decisions before booking hotels. Businesses, especially small ones, have figured this out and started stuffing review sites with fake testimonials. Is the solution to use better tools to start ranking user and provide more transparency to their account activity, so that, for instance, you can see whether this person made any other reviews or always leaves hyperbolic praise?
ANSWER: Those tools are great, but better than building a better mousetrap, more consumers need to learn it’s not enough to just not rely on any one review, but that you can’t just rely on any one review site.
What about people who don’t have time to do the extra research?
ANSWER: It needn’t be that time-consuming. Just by adding the word “complaints” to your Google search can reveal all you need to know to make an informed decision.
(Photo: “Oliver 62″)