TripAdvisor deleted my drug posts at 5 star resort in Mexico
Seven years ago, TripAdvisor repeatedly deleted an article written by Kristie Love in which she described how she was sexually assaulted while staying at the five-star Iberostar Paraiso Maya in Mexico.
Five years later, another woman’s message that she was drugged while staying at the same hotel in popular Mexican tourist destination Cancun has been withdrawn.
Jamie Valeri spoke to IBTimes United Kingdom about his “horrible” experience in Mexico and how TripAdvisor’s policy has put countless travelers at risk.
âWe went to Mexico for our 13th wedding anniversary. We booked the trip last minute through Apple Vacations. As soon as I found which hotel we were at, I searched. But I never found anything. seen badly, âshe said.
After having just a few drinks at the Paraiso Maya pool bar, Valeri said she and her husband, Rick, were unconscious for five hours. “I remember my body on a cold tiled floor, vomiting viciously, [drifting] in and out of consciousness. When they woke up, their room key was missing and Rick’s hand had been broken.
Valeri immediately sensed that she had been sexually assaulted.
When they reported the assault to hotel management, the Valeri were ordered to bring money to a medical center. They were not offered any assistance in reporting the incident to the police.
Like Love, Valeri felt compelled to share her experience and warn other travelers.
âWe have no recollection of how we got to our room, who was with us, why we passed out,â she wrote in a TripAdvisor article on January 27, 2015.
âI’m writing this not to scare you, but as a warning, it happened to us a few days ago. It was horrible and difficult to mentally deal with, it shouldn’t happen to anyone. We didn’t feel like it was right. security by calling the Mexican police and the hotel and Apple [Amstar] ignored any accusation of being drugged, âthe post concluded.
TripAdvisor deleted Valeri’s post twice, calling it “hearsay”.
âI will always ask myself: If TripAdvisor put the safety of its users before their results, would my life be different? Said ValÃ©ri.
She was shocked to find out that she wasn’t the only person to be drugged while on vacation in Mexico.
More than 100 people told the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel in October that they passed out after having a few drinks at all-inclusive resorts in Riviera Maya, Mexico. Counterfeit alcohol is believed to be the cause of illness and fainting.
Mexican authorities seized 10,000 gallons of alcohol from a company using “bad manufacturing practices” and raided 31 resorts, restaurants and nightclubs in Cancun, including the Iberostar Paraiso Maya. The alcohol in the hotel bar was expired, unlabeled, and stored in unsanitary conditions, according to the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.
A spokesperson for Iberostar told the newspaper the company adheres to strict regulatory standards and said it “only purchases sealed bottles (of alcohol) that meet all standards required by regulatory authorities. designated “.
Earlier this year, Abbey Conner, a 20-year-old student from Wisconsin, drowned in the swimming pool at Paraiso del Mar after having a few drinks with her brother. Mexican police say Conner’s cause of death was “accidental drowning,” but her family insist she was drugged.
After Conner’s death, Wisconsin senators called on the US State Department to investigate the deaths and injuries of American tourists at Mexican resorts. Valeri said websites such as TripAdvisor must also play a role in warning tourists about the crimes that have taken place.
“If TripAdvisor allowed my story to stick, I wonder if Abbey Conner’s family would have made a different decision?” said ValÃ©ri. “Maybe they would have stayed somewhere else and maybe she would still be alive.”
A spokesperson for IBEROSTAR Hotels & Resorts said IBTimes United Kingdom that the company has “zero tolerance for any type of illegal or improper conduct at any of our properties.”
She said the Valeris’ complaint was “fully investigated at the time.”
“We could not find anything to corroborate the allegations of the guests. Indeed, our records indicate that the guests were offered help on several occasions at the time and declined those offers,” the porter said. word.
A TripAdvisor spokesperson said IBTimes United Kingdom that Valeri’s post had not been “deleted” but had been banned from publication “because it contained hearsay”.
âThe post violated our current review guidelines,â the spokesperson said. In its review guidelines, TripAdvisor describes hearsay as “rumors or quotes from other sources or the reported opinions and experiences of other people.”
When asked why Love’s post was deleted seven years ago, the spokesperson said: âAt the time of Kristie’s original forum post – over seven years ago – we had a policy that we considered content to violate our guidelines if it did. not adhere to family-friendly, G-rated language. ” The post was recently reposted.
âSeveral years ago, we changed this policy to allow more descriptive reviews on the site regarding first-hand accounts of serious incidents such as rape or assault. We then recognized that our previous guidelines went too far. by preventing the sharing of information like this. âadded the spokesperson.