VRS093 – What’s Going On With Trip Advisor with Amy Hinote

On August 15th, an open letter was delivered to the CEO of Trip Advisor, Steve Kaufman, outlining a multitude of issues property managers were experiencing with the Flipkey/TA platform.

Endorsed by over 100 vacation rental managers the letter covered 5 areas managers were struggling with:

  1. Technical issues of inaccurate listings, non-functioning API feeds, expired listings not being removed etc.
  1. Lack of prioritization or follow-up on technical support requests
  1. Inconsistencies in customer account management & general communications
  1. Lack of commission parity between VRMs and RBOs
  1. Policies for vacation rental listings inconsistent with TA philosophy


VRM Intel founder Amy Hinote has been witnessing the groundswell of dissatisfaction with Trip Advisor over the past few months and with the publication of a series of articles addressing the problems, brought it to the forefront of our attention.

tweetTweet: What's going on with @Tripadvisor and #VacationRental? @VRMIntel @Cottageguru discuss issues http://ctt.ec/5Pnvc+ pic.twitter.com/MCZ75zQFKn

In this interview Amy shares her thoughts on the problems managers are experiencing, why they have occurred and what TA will have to do to resolve them….if they want to that is….

We discuss:

  • What’s trending in the vacation rental industry
  • How regulations, new technology and the evolution of OTAs are impacting our business.
  • How Flipkey evolved into a Trip Advisor company
  • The difference in treatment of vacation rentals vs hotels, attractions, and restaurants
  • Whether TAs corporate direction is favorable to vacation rental managers and owners
  • What benefits TA might gain from chasing an Airbnb model that seems to encourage regulatory issues.

…..And much more


What’s Going on with Trip Advisor – Complete Article

Trip Advisor in Tiff with Vacation Rental Managers

Priceline Moving into Vacation Rentals

VRM Consultants

VRM Intel



Where you can find Amy:









Darik Eaton

Thank you for doing this podcast. Amy’s story of the VM who had their properties taken down without notice due to a billing issue happened to me as well. And since I lost my account manager, and wasn’t notified of that change it was a little nerve racking. Thankfully we regularly check our listings on all of our platforms and caught it somewhat quickly.

I too am rooting for TripAdvisor to make it as I think it would be good for the industry to have the competition for HomeAway. TripAdvisor should take a page out of Amazon’s book when it bought Zappos. Leave them alone, allow them to do what they do best, and if anything learn something from that business unit for your other businesses!

Darik Eaton
Seattle Oasis Vacation Rentals

    Heather Bayer

    It made more sense to me when Amy said the majority if not all of Flipkey’s original team were now gone and there was no-on left with experience with vacation rentals to handle the issues. Her suggestion that TA may not want to continue relationships with VRMs was interesting and one that will no doubt come up if the meeting goes ahead in New Orleans.

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