TravelEz Recommendations: Websites & Apps for Finding Reviews

Best Websites and Apps for Reading Up on Reviews

 

Making travel arrangements can be a daunting process. Knowing where to stay, what restaurant to go to, and which movie to watch is essential to a pleasant outing. With that said, knowing where to get the inside scoop on these activities is just as important. That is why we made a list for you of the best websites and apps to use to find reviews beforehand when making your plans!

 

If you want to know where to go to actually make reservations, buy tickets, or book flights, check out our article on Websites and Apps for Making Reservations and Buying Tickets! All of the following services have both a website and an app available.

 

RESTAURANTS

 

Best Overall: Yelp

Yelp is the powerhouse of reviews, especially when it comes to restaurants. Simply type in the name of your restaurant to read comments, check out the menu, find the exact address, and learn basically any other piece of information related to the restaurant in question. Thanks to so many users uploading reviews, Yelp tends to give accurate ratings of restaurants. It is important to note that it is users, not professionals, who leave these reviews.

 

If you don’t know the exact restaurant you want to dine at, fear not! Simply type in the location and use “filters” to only show the types of restaurants you want, and Yelp will show you the best nearby restaurants that match your desires!

 

Website link: http://www.yelp.com/

 

Best for Quality Restaurants: Zagat

Zagat is well known for its reviews of well-regarded restaurants. Unlike Yelp which allows any restaurant to be reviewed by anybody, Zagat only lists reviews of established or up-and-coming places. A staff of Zagat-raters review places based on Food, Décor, and Service and usually pair numeric ratings with a succinct paragraph describing what kind of experience you can expect at the restaurant.

 

Website link: https://www.zagat.com/

 

Best for Vegan or Vegetarian Restaurants: HappyCow

HappyCow is a must-have resource for any person in search of the best vegan or vegetarian menus near him or her. With a loyal user base and an impressive staff that personally screens every submitted restaurant, HappyCow is the best way to find vegan or vegetarian options and see other patrons’ reviews.

 

Website link: https://www.happycow.net/

 

LODGING

 

Best Overall: TripAdvisor

TripAdvisor is the easiest way to find all of the information you need to know about nearly any hotel in the U.S. With an enormous number of users who leave reviews, it offers all the information you need to know coupled with an extensive stream of comments left by users who have stayed there before.

 

Website link: https://www.tripadvisor.com/

 

Best for Professional Reviews of Hotels: Oyster.com

Oyster.com hires a professional staff of hotel reviewers to personally go to hotels and review them. Each hotel review offers a paragraph description as well as a list of Pros and Cons by which to judge the hotel.

 

Website link: https://www.oyster.com/

 

MOVIES

 

Best Overall: Rotten Tomatoes

Rotten Tomatoes is either famous or infamous (depending on whom you ask) for being the metric for good and bad movies. The website collects reviews of movies from professional film critics and then outputs a percentage rating based on the aggregate of those reviews. If you want a quick and widely-trusted resource for which movie to see, Rotten Tomatoes is your solution.

 

Website link: https://www.rottentomatoes.com/

 

Close Second: RogerEbert.com

The website named after the acclaimed film critic Roger Ebert hires a staff of professional film critics who review each movie with a best-of-5-star rating along with an in-depth review of the overall movie. If you want to know the ins-and-outs of the movie you’re about to pay 15 bucks to see, look no further than this website.

 

Website link: http://www.rogerebert.com/

 

MUSEUMS AND ATTRACTIONS

 

Best Overall: TripAdvisor

While the behemoth website is known for their hotel reviews, TripAdvisor is also particularly helpful when you are looking for reviews of museums and attractions. The site relies on user ratings and reviews to rate museums and attractions, and then ranks these to help you decide which are most worthwhile and which are better off passing on.

 

Website link: https://www.tripadvisor.com/

 

Best for Professional Reviews: TripExpert

Not to be confused with TripAdvisor, TripExpert is a great resource for professional reviews. The website uses a method to aggregate professional ratings from authoritative websites such as Lonely Planet, Fodor, and Condé Nast Traveler. The site then gives attractions an aggregate score, and it lists relevant information and professional reviews under each attraction. The website also is a good resource for hotels and restaurants.

 

Website link: https://www.tripexpert.com/

 

TRAVEL GUIDES

 

Best Overall: Lonely Planet

Lonely Planet is the most comprehensive travel guide company around. While they are known for their physical print guidebooks, they also have an awesome website and app to give you the professionally curated advice you need on anything from hotels to activities and everything in between. If you download the app, you can even download city guides and maps that are viewable offline (an especially helpful feature if you are concerned about conserving battery)!

 

CONNECT WITH