Like a secret shopper — those undercover retail experts who are paid to shop and report their findings — my job is to stay undercover at luxury hotels and report back to Andrew Harper members what I find. Just as my colleagues do, I visit each hotel incognito, checking in under my real name but with no hint that I am there to review the entire property: everything from the comfort of the accommodations to the service in the spa. While getting paid to stay at luxury hotels around the world is a dream job, I love that I can speak the unvarnished truth to readers.
Unlike “influencers,” who receive complimentary stays in exchange for positive promotion on their social media channels or blog, Andrew Harper editors don’t accept freebies. If we get the royal treatment, that’s because it’s the hotel’s standard operating procedure, not because they know we’re going to write about them. In fact, we go out of our way to protect our anonymity. We’ve scrubbed our social media accounts so a search of our name won’t clue anyone in. We make up elaborate back stories to tell hotel staff in case they ask what we do or why we’re visiting. And we’ve even been known to trespass in order to get the full story. (The hotel spa is closed? Well, surely they won’t mind if we peek behind that unlocked door anyway!)
The only people we answer to are our members. In a world where everyone is bought and paid for, Andrew Harper stands alone, true to its original mission from over 40 years ago: to present objective reviews of hotels, restaurants and excursions to our members so they can make smart travel decisions and ultimately have the best vacation experiences possible. In short, Andrew Harper is the only travel company in the world whose editors aren’t compromised.
And that matters, because when you read a Tripadvisor review, for instance, you have no idea who wrote it or what their standards may be. One study out of The Times of London found that 33% of Tripadvisor reviews were completely bogus. And who can forget the guy who set up a fake restaurant with fake reviews and saw it go to No. 1 in London? It may have been funny internet fodder, but it wouldn’t have been so amusing if you had booked a milestone anniversary there.
Andrew Harper members know that our reviews are completely unbiased, that our experienced editors have the highest standards and that the Hideaway Report is advertisement-free. We’ve been called the “NPR of travel news,” and that’s something I’m proud of.
So is Andrew Harper worth it? Absolutely, because this is what we offer:
Unparalleled travel insights: Explore the world through our eyes with the exclusive monthly Hideaway Report newsletter and the meticulously researched Andrew Harper Collection books.
Tailored travel planning: Elevate every journey with one-of-a-kind bespoke travel experiences tailored by your own Andrew Harper advisor.
Exclusive perks: Gain VIP status at over 1,600 luxury hotels worldwide, as well as additional benefits at resorts, on cruises and through our curated collection of Q Club hotels, which provide enhanced members-only benefits.
— Unlimited use of our personalized travel-planning services
— 12 issues of the Hideaway Report, focusing on at least two destinations with multiple reviews of hotels, restaurants, cruises and excursions
— The complete Andrew Harper Collection guidebooks
— Weekly members-only auctions and travel packages
— Customized itineraries
All for just $395/year.
If you want the truth from a travel insider, join Andrew Harper. Every year, we help thousands of members take trips of a lifetime. Start your membership here.
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