NEEDHAM, MASS.—Tripadvisor, the world’s largest travel platform, launched the first of several initiatives to provide immediate economic support to local communities, enabling diners and travelers to assist in the long term recovery of travel and hospitality businesses impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Tripadvisor has always been a platform where humans help other humans by generously sharing their experiences (both good and bad) so that the next person, a complete stranger, can benefit. In a time of incredible uncertainty, the very vibrancy and diversity that inspires people to travel is at risk. The local businesses, and people who work at them, hold the keys to the culture we all desire to feel a part of—both as locals and travelers. That deep connection to a sense of place, even if only for a long weekend, is in the hands and hearts of so many people who need support right now. Small actions like buying a gift card, ordering take-out, or leaving a review can make a difference. And today, the world needs each other,” said Lindsay Nelson, Chief Experience and Brand Officer at Tripadvisor.
There are 5 million hospitality businesses on Tripadvisor that need help. Gift card purchases, in particular, serve as much needed microloans to help operators pay their rent, continue to pay employees and fund benefits like healthcare, as well as fund other critical expenses. Tripadvisor is making it easier to purchase gift cards and identify restaurants that are still open for takeout and delivery.
Members Asked to Write Reviews
Tripadvisor is also calling on members to write reviews and create guides that highlight favorite restaurants, bars and cafes. These small gestures of support make a meaningful business impact. The rank of a business on Tripadvisor is based on the quantity, quality and recency of reviews, with a recent Cornell Study finding that as the number of reviews increase, the ratings in these reviews tend to be more positive.
The Tripadvisor Foundation is committing $1 Million to support organizations serving the most vulnerable populations around the world in response to COVID-19. Initially, within the hospitality sector, the Foundation will contribute $1 (up to $150,000) for each Tripadvisor review posted or shares of the #LoveYourLocal hashtag on public Twitter, Facebook or Instagram accounts. Proceeds will go to two organizations helping impacted restaurant and front-line workers: World Central Kitchen and The Restaurant Workers’ Community Foundation.
“With guidance from governments being updated frequently, there is a risk that customers won’t be able to keep up with the right information about which businesses are open for delivery. That is why we’re rolling out these features—for free—to make it easier for restaurant owners and operators to highlight the latest information about their business, the options they can still provide to their customers, and encourage gift card purchases,” said Bertrand Jelensperger, Senior Vice President, Restaurants at TripAdvisor and CEO of TheFork. “If everyone who can afford it ordered one gift card or a meal for delivery, that income could make all the difference in helping the local restaurant they love pay its bills and its staff during this period.”
Restaurants interested in learning more about how to feature gift card, take-out or delivery capabilities can visit https://www.tripadvisor.com/ForRestaurants/covid19 for more information.
Helping Impacted Front Line & Hourly Workers
As part of an initial $1 million donation to support urgent COVID-19 response needs, the Tripadvisor Foundation will contribute $1 (up to a total of $150,000 USD) each time a customer does one of the following actions and shares the #LoveYourLocal hashtag on public Twitter, Facebook or Instagram accounts, including posting:
- An image of a gift card receipt from a restaurant you love anywhere in the world.
- A link to a Tripadvisor review of your favorite dining experience.
- Your favorite dish at your favorite local restaurant linking to a Tripadvisor business listing.
- A tribute to your favorite chef or culinary experience linking to a Tripadvisor business listing.
- A list of your local favorites using Tripadvisor’s “Saves” feature by clicking on the heart icon on any Tripadvisor restaurant listing.
These donations will be equally distributed between World Central Kitchen, a nonprofit organization that mobilizes urgently to provide meals in the wake of natural disasters and crises, and the Restaurant Workers’ Community Foundation dedicated to making the restaurant industry more hospitable and providing support to those in the restaurant industry impacted by the COVID-19 crisis.
While the immediate needs are focused on supporting the restaurant industry, the partnership with these two organizations will evolve to support impacted small businesses across the tourism and hospitality sector.
For more information and guidance on COVID-19, you can join the conversation on Tripadvisor traveler forums, visit the World Health Organization, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention or local government authorities.