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How to respond to negative reviews about my hotel

Responding to negative reviews is never easy but apologising and keeping it professional are among the most commonly used tactics to deal with negative criticism

Nowadays online reviews sites such as Tripadvisor are commonly used by people who want to find out more about an accommodation before booking it straight away. But not all reviews have a positive impact: in fact, according to ReviewTrackers 94% of consumers say that a bad review has convinced them to avoid a business.

If you have ever dealt with a negative review and did not know how to respond, here are eight points on how to do so.

Respond promptly

Responding to negative reviews promptly shows that you value guest feedback and are attentive to their concerns. Delayed responses can be perceived as indifferent or uninterested. Responding promptly also shows that you are actively managing your hotel’s online reputation.


Acknowledge the issue

Acknowledge the guest’s concerns and show empathy for their experience. This helps to demonstrate that you understand and take their feedback seriously. For example, you can start your response with phrases such as “Thank you for sharing your feedback,” or “We are sorry to hear about your negative experience.”


Offer a sincere apology for any inconvenience or negative experience the guest may have had. An apology can go a long way in diffusing a situation and demonstrating that you value guest satisfaction. For example, you can say, “We apologize for the inconvenience you experienced during your stay with us.”

Address the specific issue

Address the specific issue raised in the review and provide a solution or explanation. This shows that you are taking steps to rectify the issue and prevent similar situations from happening in the future. For example, if a guest complains about a noisy room, you can explain that you will investigate and address the source of the noise to prevent it from happening to future guests.

Offer a resolution

Offer a resolution to the issue raised in the review. This can be in the form of compensation or a specific action you will take to rectify the issue. For example, if a guest complains about a dirty room, you can offer a free cleaning service or a complimentary stay in the future.

Provide contact information

Provide contact information for the guest to reach out to you directly if they have any further concerns. This shows that you are open to feedback and willing to engage with guests to address any issues. For example, you can provide an email address or phone number for the guest to contact you directly.

Keep it professional

Keep your response professional and avoid any defensive or confrontational language. This can escalate the situation and further damage your hotel’s reputation. Responding in a professional and empathetic manner can improve your hotel’s reputation and demonstrate your commitment to guest satisfaction.

Learn from feedback

Use negative reviews as an opportunity to learn from feedback and improve your hotel’s operations. Analyze patterns in feedback and make changes to prevent similar issues from occurring in the future. For example, if multiple guests complain about the same issue, such as a lack of cleanliness, you can implement new cleaning procedures or training for housekeeping staff.

By following these eight points, you can respond to negative reviews in a professional, constructive, and empathetic manner. Responding to negative reviews in a timely and sincere manner can improve guest satisfaction and demonstrate your hotel’s commitment to improve its services.

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