What Hotel Star Ratings Actually Mean

What Hotel Star Ratings Actually Mean

You're taking a vacation, and you've booked a luxurious, five-star hotel. Their rating is even displayed on the building, so you know it's fancy. But as it turns out, a hotel's star rating might not be as meaningful as you think.

Photo by Danny Fowler

Business Insider explains that hotel rating systems can be all over the map. They usually come from three main avenues:

  • Private enterprises, like AAA
  • Government agencies and tourism boards
  • Online user ratings

Obviously, online reviews are going to be subjective. And private enterprises and tourism boards may have their own set metric for deciding ratings, but those metrics vary between entities. And the thing is, hotels can use whatever rating they like:

...hotels can basically choose which rating they want to display, and, according to Cascone, borderline decide their own. "It could be that the hotel put [the stars] up on its own and just said 'hey we're going to call ourselves a four star' or my favourite rating is … they just throw it all in there and ultimately what's happening is that the guest is confused. In the end it doesn't really serve that hotel's interest, it's a short term gain."

So when you book a hotel based on star ratings, you want to know exactly what that means. Is it a Michelin rating, based on their set methodology, or a website's rating based on user reviews? Either way, you want to find out what exactly the star indicates.

For more detail, check out the full post over at Business Insider.

Here's why you shouldn't pay attention to hotel stars [Business Insider]


    Suggest you change the title or flesh out the post to explain what they actually mean for instance the Michelin system or the AAA system, so that if we travel to Europe or the US we will be a little enlightened.

      Maybe Try, Hotel ratings systems are different. This article just highlights that.

Join the discussion!

Trending Stories Right Now