User-generated travel sites more trusted than agents

Travellers trust user-generated reviews more than they trust travel agents' content, according to new online research by Nielsen//NetRatings.

A survey found that by 20% of respondents said websites like TripAdvisor were the most reliable source of information.

But only 12% said travel agents' own websites were the most reliable, followed by 11% who chose search engines.

Over half of travellers who take more than five weeks' holiday each year believe user-generated reviews are the most reliable.

In comparison, no-one taking more than three holidays a year considered travel agents sites to be the most reliable source of information. Only people who take just one holiday a year are likely to prefer taking advice from an agents' website.

Despite this, 62% UK users turn to search engines when booking holidays, and 36% use travel agent sites.

The research also found user-generated sites are more likely to be considered trustworthy by men than women and by 25 to 34-year-olds.

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