Our visit to TripAdvisor

On a hot Wednesday during the summer, our Enroot group took a trip to Trip Advisor’s headquarters in Needham, MA. During our visit, we gained the favorable opportunity to learn about the major functions of this company and discuss with the employees.

“The field trip was great because they introduced us to different people who have different work to do and also learned that you don’t need to learn something to end up working in the area. The workplace is also really nice because of their gym and the cafeteria is healthy. I might be interested into interning there next summer after college.” -Widvine, Class of 2016   
What I thought was really interesting was the department that designed the web. It is a really cool job.” -Alessandra, Class of 2017

TripAdvisor is an American company that arranges traveling services around the world. It helps travelers find the best places due to their reviews of travel-related contents. It was created 16 years ago by Stephen Kaufer, the CEO. He came up with the idea while he was on vacation and noticed that people would go to restaurants, hotels, or travel to foreign countries without knowing what the place looked like. So he decided to create an app where people could share their experiences in an area with other individuals. From there, the app developed into a bigger service and people can now book their trips throughout the website.

Overall, the company holds 3000 employees including a very large engineering team. They have 300 engineers to help build the site and have 38 locations  around the world in 45 countries, meaning their app is translated in 28 different languages. The app has gained a prominent popularity over the last decade and now has over 300 million reviews. These reviews consist of photos or comments users post on the website to share their adventure. TripAdvisor also provides internships for interested students and have a partnership with Girls Who Code.

“I would love to have an internship at their company next year.” -Weijing, Class of 2016

When we arrived there, we were lucky to grab lunch in their wonderful cafeteria. Everything was well organized and the food was delicious. I personally had a bowl of salad and added a chocolate chip cookie ice cream to complete my meal. Later on, we met with some of the employees in a conference room and were able to discuss with them and ask questions about their life [experience] at TripAdvisor. We were introduced to the four branches helping the company be successful. The Product Managing branch builds technology products in a way that works in favor of everyone. When building a product, they think about it from different perspectives because people have different needs, likes, and preferences. They discuss their ideas with the engineers which will have to find ways to develop the ideas into products. The Sales department builds relationships with other companies and verify their payments. They want to keep a great relationship with these companies in order to use them as referral when an individual wants to travel somewhere. These relationships go as far as Central America to Europe. The Advertising Operations branch tracks how many people visited their websites on a daily basis. They check how many people clicked on a photo, comment, or searched for a specific topic. Lastly, there is the Marketing department which makes sure other companies do not surpass them in terms of popularity. There is a huge competition in the traveling area where other apps and websites are also trying to upstand their reputation, thereby the Marketing team need to make sure that the majority of the population use the TripAdvisor website as much as possible.

“The TripAdvisor trip was nice because the food was amazing and it surprised me that they did not have Fashion Designing, which is what I would like to major in the future. So it would be a great opportunity to be able to introduce it to their company.” -Jarna, Class of 2018

To complete our trip, we received a tour of the building to have an idea of what it feels like to work at TripAdvisor. We visited their gym, their recreation room, and their magnificent fireplace. The company takes great care of their employees and reflects a welcoming environment. Going to TripAdvisor was an eye-opening when it comes to choosing a career path considering most of the workers majored in various subjects before working at this company. It says a lot to change your career to a whole different one. You never know what life has reserved for your future.  

Lastly, we want to thank the TripAdvisor team for giving us a wonderful tour of their building and giving us the time to converse with their staff, along with the City Links program for organizing this inspiring trip.   

Saby, Class of 2016