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Besides TripAdvisor...

I used to LOVE TripAdvisor to help choose my city tours and activities. I could sort by the most highly recommended and read reviews etc. Now TripAdvisor just tries to sell their tours, I can’t find a ranking anymore and if I do stumble upon one, I only find one tour and can’t find any other choices. Does anyone know how to sort through TripAdvisor anymore to find the tours the old way? Do you recommend any other site that one can find tours by popularity and with reviews? Totally frustrated with TripAdvisor!

Posted by
698 posts

Hi Kathi,
I also very much dislike the new format and how their featured tours and day trips are funnelled through Viator. Often though, the name of the company actually providing the service is listed with a small blue link, and so I then search out their website so I can read about or deal with them directly.

I have also had good luck and can draw up rankings on Trip Advisor if I type in Transportation for a given place. It doesn't show up if you click on the “Things To Do” tab for a given location, but if you type in Transportation in the search bar on top right with your given area it pulls it up. Some of these are private drivers, some offer daytrips, some offer both driver and official tour guide services, some offer transfer services, taxis, etc. but I have actually had good luck when I start looking at their particular websites after I see their ranking and reviews. Hope this helps.

Posted by
7465 posts

I still look at TripAdvisor but avoid Viator as the booking since it’s just a middleman company. If there’s no website link to the actual company, sometimes it works to just use a few of the description words in Google, and you can find the actual tour company.

I’ve had good luck with searching for specific tour categories in general Google searches, such as “cooking class Verona” or “bike city tour Sevilla”. Then when you find one that looks promising, put that specific company in s search to read reviews away from their website.

And, this forum is always helpful! I attended a wonderful cooking class in Lucca last year after inquiring to the forum.

Posted by
8245 posts

I do consider Trip Advisor when looking for rooms, etc. And I prefer to read specific customer comments on what's been said about a tour or a room on Trip Advisor. I compare what's said to other sources too.
You can also Google the same subject and sometimes find other sources of ground tours/transportation in any area.
A last resort is to get Enterprise Car Rental to bring you a car at the port and do the touring on your own for a day. With MapQuest/GoogleMaps, getting around anywhere in the world is just easy.

Posted by
492 posts

TripAdvisor and Viator are the same company, so it's no surprise they've further integrated one site with the other and push Viator options for tour bookings.

If you use the free text search function, you can still see a lot of listings like what you might be used to. It can require being a bit more specific - if you're looking for tours in London, for instance, you might want to actually type in the names of places you want to see, tour specifics, and such a la "harry potter tours" or "london walking tours".

One thing I've done is essentially use TripAdvisor (and its Viator results) for research, and then taking things to Google from there - checking out reviews on TripAdvisor, but not booking through them. Instead, I'll note information from reviews or tour descriptions on TripAdvisor (the name of the guide, descriptions of tours, even photos), and then search for the specific company on Google. Even copying descriptions of tours from TripAdvisor and pasting them in to Google can sometimes lead ya directly to the tour company's website.

Posted by
83 posts

Dang, I do what you’ll do, I was just hoping there was the slick one stop shopping way like before.

Posted by
9044 posts

I really dislike their new set-up and it seems to be different for different cities.
One thing you can do is if you are on the forums, go to the city that interests you, then click on Things To Do at the top of the page, then go to Tours, then on the left side under all of the price categories, they list "All Tour Operators".
Huge pain in the neck.

Posted by
7078 posts

I rarely use TA anymore, I hate their website now and don't find it user friendly at all. Even getting hard to just get reviews of a place.