As travel returns, companies like Tripadvisor, Google and OpenTable will struggle to clean up outdated restaurant content

Living in Italy over the last year felt surreal. Visiting sites like The Sistine Chapel and The Colosseum with just a handful of other people, when normally there are 20,000 people trampling through them per day, is a once in a century experience.

But using Tripadvisor, Google and OpenTable to research restaurants has become quite frustrating. The number of establishments that have not survived the pandemic is substantial, and many did not think of notifying these websites and apps as they closed their doors for good. The result is that travelers who previously relied on these sources are often sent on a wild goose chase resulting in cranky families. Users now must double check the date of the last review to figure out that the #2 rated gelateria in Florence, Italy no longer exists.

I recommend that a button is added for the next 6 months that says “This establishment has closed” so that users can easily report these instances and minimize the impact on future travelers as we all hit the streets again in search of good eats.