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According to TripTogether “a trip shared is a gazillion times better” than traveling solo. Well, that’s a bit of a kick in the shin for solo-travellers, but let’s go with it. This site is designed to link people who are interested in traveling the world, in the hope that they’ll hit it off and meet in real life. It’s a nice idea, but somehow there’s something about the site which just made us a little uncomfortable. Somewhere between the bikini-clad women who were always online, and the fact that you had to pay 1 credit per minute of live chat, we couldn’t help but feel that there could be a little bit of swindling going on.
Maybe we’re too suspicious. After all, there were plenty of other members who weren’t showing off their toned bodies in swimwear, and they seemed to be genuine travellers. Plus, you can’t really blame TripTogether for trying to make some money out of providing you with a network.
The credit system they use works like this: you buy batches of credits, then you spend them to chat with other members. These aren’t cheap, though, and you could quickly find that you’ve spent a lot before even getting to properly know a member, let alone plan a trip together.
Assuming you don’t mind the cost, what does the site offer? Well, you can chat by sending offline messages, and then wait for a reply, or you can talk in a live chat.
Each member can build a profile page, although these pages seemed to be incredibly bereft of information. Rather, a number of the members we looked into had plenty of photos instead, which is great if you’re into aesthetics but not very useful if you actually want to travel and talk about vacations.
The site is also finicky at times, always trying to get you to click on a profile and chat. If you load up the home page after registration you’ll see a gallery of profile pictures. Scroll down and you’ll maybe catch a glimpse of links to the “FAQ” and “About Us” sections, which quickly disappear as the page updates with more photos. You have to be quick on the mouse buttons to load the page and click on these links in order to access the pages. This is really a terrible design flaw. But, actually, don’t worry too much because the FAQ is pretty useless anyway.
The range of destinations available is a bit peculiar, with the main options being whole continents, or Scandinavia. Why? We’ve no idea. A great number of the female members seem to be from Russia, Ukraine or African nations, though they appeared to all speak English.
Our real concern is that, whilst you might find people on here who really want to chat and travel, it felt a little like a honey trap to sap credits – and therefore money – out of men who enjoy talking to beautiful women. This is fine, if that’s what you want, but it presents itself as a serious travel site and we’re not 100% sure that’s what is really on offer here.
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