I find the various perspectives on TA useful and have learned to ignore the reviews that claim everything is "amazing" or "terrible" and read the details in balanced reviews to find what is important to me.
There are a good number of posters on TA whose opinions I value, and another set whose opinions I discount, as I know their priorities are different from mine.
I choose not to throw the baby out with the bathwater.
The best advise about reading TA reviews of Couples is DON'T! SOOOOOOOOOO much misinformation. We love Couples!
Reading TA reviews is how I found CSA in the first place and we've been 4 times. I love Couples too and don't think they have anything to be afraid of with TA reviews. I find them very useful for trip planning, especially if you read a lot of them, knowing that the outliers will be off base. I never choose a resort without having read as many reviews as possible so that I get the most complete picture I can before arrival and can set my expectations accordingly.
Not just Couples Resorts that suffer from reviews containing 'misinformation'. Recently the hotel where my husband works was slated in a couple of reviews. e.g dirty pool, terrible noise from the main road......................thing is it doesn't have a pool and it is right out in the countryside, off the beaten track So, yes rckbert you are right, just don't look.
I have got to the point where I no longer look at TA for any destination, I can't tell what's true and what is not, however I do agree some of the reviews are just hilarious.
Without TA reviews we would have never found Couples Resorts f or which we are 5 time repeaters.....there is plenty of truth in most reviews, and yes at times Couples is just like any resort, they fall down sometimes. But obviously its a rare event, which we have experienced, but returned anyways and enjoyed the resort as we knew it would be.
So planning our 6th trip!
I personally appreciate TA reviews when choosing a hotel/resort for any location & read all reviews from the past year .... I try to "read between the lines" & decide whether what the person is complaining about is something that would matter to us or the things that they are raving about being so great are something that we care about .... I also look for the same complaint being stated over & over again or if it's a 1 or 2 time thing. My husband & I LOVE LOVE LOVE CN & think it's our PARADISE (we would live there if we had the money & they would let us) but when I read some of the negative comments on TA, I can understand where the person is coming from .... As much as we love CN, it's not perfect & there are aspects of it that some people are not going to like - Especially people that have never traveled much or people that are expecting glitz & glamour because they didn't do their research. When someone says the rooms look dated - I agree but we're not there for the room ... The first time we arrived & were taken to our room, we were pretty disappointed BUT within 1/2 a day, we couldn't care less about the room because we were in LOVE with the atmosphere .... When someone says that there are bees around the pool bar - I agree that sometimes there are bees BUT they do NOT bother anyone .... When someone says that the tree frogs are loud - I agree BUT that's one of THE BEST things about the place that we LOVE & makes us feel relaxed .... When someone says that the water pressure or temperature is bad - I agree because we've been in some rooms where the water pressure & temp was not great BUT that's not been a deal killer for us & in some rooms, we've not had an issue at all .... When someone says they had ants in their room - I agree because last year when we left the open Christmas cookie bag out that the resort brought by, we had LOTS & LOTS of ants. Do I believe all the reviews on TA - NO BUT I do think that for the most part, they are legit .... I've posted some of my own. You just have to read them & keep an open mind .... The person that is complaining about everything, probably can't be pleased anywhere ..... If the same complaint comes up over & over, then I'd think about it.
Last edited by Maxernie; July 2nd, 2013 at 10:42 PM.
I found it appauling and disgusting today when I read some Chick's review about Couples Barbados. On more than one occasion, throughout her negative review, she had to refer to the lady that assisted her at the front desk as "UGLY" and "FAT". Really? What does that have to do with anything? The review is now removed as well as my post about it, but come on. Why do people have to be so mean and insensitive? Totally ridiculous. Glad the review is no longer there.
It is amazing how different the opinions are on TA. When I first looked at the reviews for our "home" CSS, yes there were some that were not favorable, but the majority of the reviews were very positive. I figure it this way.... 10% will hate a place no matter what, 10% will love a place no matter what, and the rest will fall anywhere in between.
For all the Couples resorts in Jamaica, only 2 to 3 % of all reviews are rated as terrible. I chalk that up to those few who are never pleased with anything and are only happy if they have something to complain about. sad really as they are never able to truly relax and enjoy the moment.
When 90+% rate a place as excellent or very good, I'd have to agree with the masses. There is always something that someone is not happy with, and for a lot of the times, it's something that is beyond the resorts control.
Some of my favorite complaints are about the tree frogs being too noisy, too much rain, lizards everywhere, the guests, sand fleas, etc. There was even someone who "would have rated CTI a 5 star if it wasn't for the guests who smoke". As if the resort has control over those things.
The one common theme I do see is that the resorts and rooms are "dated". This is true, but in my opinion this adds to the ambiance of the resort. CTI was built in the 40's and has held on to that style. CSS is also old, and I guess that is what many like about Couples. No glitz, no marble, no granite. It is a place that you can truly relax and experience an island vacation. Modern and updated does not make it better.
One thing I did notice among those who rate Couples poorly, is the majority state that they are "well traveled" but only have 1 review on TA. If you are so called "well traveled" you would think that they would have posted more than one review. Make you think about the validity of those people.
But for all the reviews I have read, and that would be many, I agree with redinthehead, the guy who complained that the ocean was too salty in Jamaica takes the cake.
TA reviews are kind of like the old Olympic scoring system. Throw out the highest and the lowest and average the rest. The real problem seems to be that many people take the term critic way to literally and only feel they are interesting if they are criticizing things. "Oh look, here's a picture of a dust circle around my lamp!" Others are just people trying to get even with competitors or hotels because their vacation did not live up to their highest expectation even though the problem is quite often due to themselves. My wife and I can have a good time anywhere we go if we just let ourselves. You can too. If you are looking for things that are wrong then that tends to be all you see. That is not a vacation to me!
As far as Couples goes, you will find a vast number of positive reviews out there more than negative and if you read this message board you will find the same. We love Couples! Married at CSS and have visited all the Jamaican resorts (some many times) and heading to CB next year. They know how to treat you.
I just booked for Couples Barbados a couple weeks ago. I'll echo the comments by Maxernie.
I wouldn't put too much faith in a single review, but if all the reviews (both good and bad) are consistently saying the food is great, it's pretty safe to assume the food is pretty good. Likewise, if all the reviews (good and bad) comment about how the rooms are still a little dated/dirty and the place is understaffed, I'd venture to guess it's an issue.
Personally, I was looking for a couple things: beautiful beach, good drinks, good food and the ability to get out on the water. (Getting off the beaten path was a plus as well). From reading the reviews of couples resorts in Jamaica, it was pretty apparent the Couples brand had the drinks/food figured out and reviews of the place CB was before mentioned a beautiful beach. They serve their purpose well enough, I think. And, they can be pretty fun to read. And, I knew a guy who went to Couples Negril and loved it. That was worth more than all the TA reviews combined.
Further, from reading the reviews, I get the feeling a lot of people just need to relax. Some of these reviews say the same thing "We were expecting problems, but, instead, we got problems." You don't say.
In my mind, if you're with your love and you have the drinks and you have the food, and you have a roof over you're head and a beach, there's not much more you could want.