Turkey Travel Planner (TTP) provides thousands of pages of travel information to you and everyone else in the world for free, even though it costs tens of thousands of dollars to research and organize this information.
How is this possible? How does TTP pay its bills?
By far the largest part of the revenue that supports TTP comes from publishing advertisements on its pages. Advertisements can be useful or annoying, but they’re what pays the bills for newspapers, magazines, TV and radio broadcasts, and most websites, including TTP. More…
A small but welcome additional amount comes to TTP from its Sponsored Page program. There are fewer than 100 Sponsored Pages among the 5000 pages on TTP, and the number of Sponsored Pages is actually decreasing year by year.
I write a Sponsored Page with the approval of a travel facility that gives financial support to TTP, then mark the page with the “Sponsored Page” label so that you know it was a collaboration and has been paid for.
It’s very similar to how travel agencies operate: if a travel agency recommends a tour, hotel, etc. and a client decides to buy it, the client pays the published retail price (say, $100) and the agency receives a small commission (usually 5% to 10% of the retail price, in this case $5 to $10) from the tour company or hotel. If the client were to go directly to the tour company or hotel, s/he would pay the same retail price of $100, so buying the tour or hotel through a travel agency does not cost the client more. The price is the same, $100, either way.
The small commission pays the travel agency’s bills and allows it to help clients to choose good travel products and services.
Travel agencies—and TTP—recommend only services they believe to be good quality because they want satisfied clients. In these days of Internet forums, bad service quickly becomes known to the world, and the recommender of bad service loses credibility with travelers.
No smart business knowingly recommends bad services.
If a page does not have the “Sponsored Page” label, then it’s my own personal unvarnished opinion, written by me with nobody else’s input. The vast majority of the nearly 5000 pages on TTP—99.9%— are not Sponsored Pages.
My aim is to make Sponsored Pages useful and informative, a real aid in helping you to select good travel services such as hotels, transport and tour companies; and, in this way, to make TTP self-supporting.
Sponsored Pages are a far better source of support than such things as video ads which, I think, are a real annoyance on web pages. I think Sponsored pages are even better, more honest, informative and useful than those expensive ads in travel magazines (which is what pays the bills for those magazines).
In writing Sponsored Pages, I stress what I think you want and need to know, and I usually do a much better job of it than do most travel-business promotions.
For example, hotel ads and websites tend to say the same things: “Right in the city center!” “Near sights, shopping and entertainment!” “Comfortable, stylish and reasonably-priced!” Reading that same stuff over and over doesn’t help you to choose the place that’s right for you.
And if it’s not “Right in the city center,” I won’t write that it is. Why would I? If you go there, you’ll see that it’s not.
Instead, I work to write a useful, informative, truthful page that fits well with all the non-Sponsored Pages on TurkeyTravelPlanner.com.
The very selection of a business for inclusion in TTP is a vote of confidence. If a travel business doesn’t treat visitors right, I don’t want it on my site because it will give TTP a bad name. I know travelers will definitely use services mentioned on TTP, and will definitely tell other travelers about them, so the services had better be good.
Occasional disappointments are bound to occur. Not all travelers have good experiences at all facilities—we do not live in a perfect world. If something is not up to your expectations, I want to know about it. You’re welcome—indeed encouraged!—to post your opinions and experiences of any and all travel facilities and businesses described on TTP on the TTP Forums, or to send me a message directly.
In case of a disagreement with a travel supplier mentioned on TTP, I can often help to find a satisfactory resolution. If a travel company is clearly not working in the interests of travelers, I remove it from the Sponsored Page program.
Thanks for your support of Turkey Travel Planner!
—by Tom Brosnahan
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