It seems that whenever we stay at a hotel, book a tour or even take a flight, there’s a good chance that a survey will arrive soon afterwards by email. As I’ve said before, I have mixed feelings (mainly negative) about surveys (although if it grabs my interest, I sometimes can’t resist). In relation to travel experiences, just occasionally, I drop my guard and respond in the hope that my feedback will be read by someone. Big mistake, because I invariably get annoyed.
Many questions require a “yes” or “no” answer, whereas sometimes no answer is required or appropriate, or perhaps there’s scope for shades of opinion. Since you can’t proceed if the responses is blank, my tactic is to respond “no”!
Even if a scale to rate a particular aspect is provided, often there is no scope to nuance answers. For example, we got a survey following a recent flight we took. There were a number of questions about staff attitude etc. For the most part, we found the staff to be very good, but there was one lapse. How them do you rate the staff overall in this case on a scale of 1 to 10? 9 for most of them but 3 for the exception? But that’s not possible, so my response was to lower my overall rating (but admittedly not down to 3).
The worst surveys don’t even ask for overall impressions or allow scope for at least one “free form” answer where any major issues can be identified.
I’m left wondering whether the purpose of surveys such as this is to seek feedback, or are they really just to enable a box to be ticked somewhere, perhaps to assess some manager’s bonus calculated by reference to “customer satisfaction”? Be that as it may, following my recent spate of surveys, I’ve re-resolved not to answer them but to continue setting out my views on TripAdvisor.