Bidding on Priceline

Old Feb 20th, 2008, 11:45 AM
  #21  
 
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dmlove: did you figure an answer to your own question? If so, this may be redundant.

In biddingfortravel, at the top of any list of winning bids, there is a "Hotel List". Click on that and you'll see the hotels listed for each zone as well as the star level.

For San Antonio, here are the highest star levels:

Downtown 4*

Airport 3*

SA NW 4*

SA W Resort

Medical Ctr 3*

SA NE 2*

SA E 2*

SA SE 2*

Let's say you are bidding for 4* for the Downtown area (that's where the Riverwalk is, correct?) and you bid $60. Your bid is rejected.

Look at the list, if you add any of the areas that have NO 4* hotels listed.

Let's say "Airport". The highest rated is 3*, so if you add in "Airport" to "Downtown", and rebid immediately at $65, this is considered a "free rebid", since you couldn't get a 4* in a zone - "Airport" - that has NO 4* hotels.

One caveat: the biddingfortravel list is not current, since they lost their moderator some time ago. So, even with a free rebid, select a zone that you really want to be in; otherwise, you may win something way out in the "toolies".

Good luck!


easytraveler is offline  
Old Feb 20th, 2008, 03:06 PM
  #22  
 
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follow the rules and NEVER use biddingfortravel or betterbidding hotel list as THE LIST for star ratings.

you must use the priceline zone list for star ratings.. you never know when a new hotel has been added, and biddingfortravel and bb depend on consumers to post winning bids, not like priceline themselves.

the star ratings are only dependable on priceline. zones do change, as do hotel ratings.

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Old Feb 20th, 2008, 03:55 PM
  #23  
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In Manhattan, a standard room has one double bed or one queen. A room with two doubles or two queens is considered an upgrade.

Don't even think about trying to cram four in a room in Manhattan unless you are prepared to buy another room at rack rate. Bid for two rooms.

joebear, a little bit of research can save you hundreds.
 
Old Feb 20th, 2008, 03:57 PM
  #24  
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One last thing, Manhattan hotels are running occupancy rates of almost 85% making it even tougher to get good priceline deals.
 
Old Feb 21st, 2008, 04:05 AM
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This thread makes it seem so complicated, but we just went on the site, picked 4 star, started with one neighborhood at one price, added another neighborhood when that didn't work, then another one and raised our price and got his room. I understand you are committed to go once you book, but is is more complicated than that?
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Old Feb 21st, 2008, 04:55 AM
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Yes it is if you want a certain hotel or a certain area.
By figuring out where and how many free bid zones you have you can really maximize your chances.
It would be nice for others to simplify these explanations though...it does sound more difficult than it is.
Maybe a glossery would help!
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Old Feb 21st, 2008, 04:56 AM
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Many many strategies will work on Priceline. If you keep adding zones and raising your bid, then sure you'll eventually get something. But you might pay a lot more than you had to.
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Old Feb 21st, 2008, 05:19 AM
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I agree, it doesn't have to be complicated, but adding zones and raising your bid it isn't the best thing to do. That's where the studying comes in.

BTW, I have had good luck with my longer stays too. I've more than once had 6 or 7 night stays in New York and Florida.
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Old Feb 21st, 2008, 07:13 AM
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there is no reason to assume you need to raise your bid when you add a zone.

also, beware,.. you should lower your bid when you add and go DOWN a star rating.

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Old Feb 22nd, 2008, 07:24 AM
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It's hard to generalize about priceline -- there are just so many variables that go into how useful it can be. I've gotten rooms so cheap that it was actually more to park the car that it was for the room, and I've also been completely shut out.
Biddingfortravel is an absolute must before you do any bidding.
Also, know that you are almost certain to get the least desireable room available. I don't necessarily mean that the room will be in disrepair (and I've been able to move to different rooms on the rare ocassions that has happened), but that you'll be put on a low floor without a view. Just depends on how important that is to you.
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Old Feb 22nd, 2008, 07:37 AM
  #31  
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< know that you are almost certain to get the least desireable room available>

Maybe we have been lucky, but that has not been our experience. I feel that in most cases, we have been treated as well as could be expected.
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Old Feb 22nd, 2008, 07:43 AM
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MDC8K, I disagree with your comment about bad rooms going to Priceline customers. I've bid successfully many times and this has *never* happened to me. I ask for and have always received the room I want: upper floor and away from the elevator. (I don't care about a view).

My take on this is that hotels are recognizing that more and more people are bidding on Priceline, Hotwire, etc, and that they can't afford to alienate a single customer.
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Old Feb 22nd, 2008, 08:19 AM
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We use Priceline quite a bit. Occasionally we've run into a front desk clerk who has cited Priceline as a reason for only giving a certain room. At one hotel in particular they were particularly nasty, saying that "Priceline did not allow them to honor any requests for non smoking/king/etc. What baloney! (That was the Radisson in Spartanburg.) But by and large we have always been accommodated, particularly by Hyatt, Marriott, Hilton/Doubletree.
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Old Feb 22nd, 2008, 08:27 AM
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I bid successfully on a room last week for Milwaukee. At no point was there a place to put in a request for non-smoking(or maybe I missed it). I called the hotel to confirm the room and asked about non-smoking. Turns out I had a smoking room, she told me to call Priceline, who then told me to take it up with the hotel. Called the hotel back and got my room changed to non-smoking (hopefully)
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Old Feb 22nd, 2008, 09:11 AM
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My Dh said that the room he just got through priceline was adequate-- a little tired and not as nice as he has hoped. BUT they did give him the bedding type he asked for and the price was definitely right. i do think "4 star" is a relative term though...
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Old Feb 22nd, 2008, 09:22 AM
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From the Priceline site's own FAQ:

Can I request a smoking or non-smoking room?

Priceline requests that our hotel partners provide non-smoking rooms to our Name Your Own Price ® customers; however, as is standard hotel industry practice, room assignments are based on hotel availability and are at a hotel's discretion. Some hotel properties may even be smoke-free. If you require a non-smoking room or a smoking room, you may contact your hotel directly. All special requests are based on availability and at the discretion of the hotel.
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Old Feb 22nd, 2008, 10:48 AM
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I have never, ever, gotten a "bad" room with Priceline. And, "Priceline" has never been mentioned during the check-in process, except "Your stay has been prepaid."

Often, we've been offered to upgrade to a suite, view, concierge level, for a very reasonable extra nightly charge.

Best was $110/night at the Marriott Marquis over New Year's a few years ago. We were given a corner room (the largest hotel room I've ever seen) with a view over Times Square.
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Old Feb 22nd, 2008, 10:57 AM
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"I disagree with your comment about bad rooms going to Priceline customers. . . My take on this is that hotels are recognizing that more and more people are bidding on Priceline, Hotwire, etc, and that they can't afford to alienate a single customer."
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

This argument has gone on many times before, and while I'll also agree that MOST hotels want to keep their customers (from Priceline or anywhere else) happy, I'll still maintain that if the hotel is at full capacity, and they have ONLY two rooms left for the night -- do you honestly think they are more likely to give the "bad" room to someone who has booked direct at full price or to the customer who booked through Priceline at a discount. Please don't argue about "it's never happened to me" -- unless you know for a fact that you arrived at a hotel and they deliberately gave you the only remaining GOOD room and deliberately gave a full paying customer the only remaining BAD room.

This may be a minor point -- how many hotels really have that many good and bad rooms, and how often is EVERY room going to be taken? But it DID happen to me at the Times Square Hilton and the clerk made it very clear that I was given the "bad room" BECAUSE I was booked through Priceline and I would only be there one night, and of course because "they had no other rooms available" (at 2 in the afternoon?).
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Old Feb 22nd, 2008, 11:28 AM
  #39  
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This may be a minor point -- how many hotels really have that many good and bad rooms, and how often is EVERY room going to be taken? But it DID happen to me at the Times Square Hilton and the clerk made it very clear that I was given the "bad room" BECAUSE I was booked through Priceline and I would only be there one night, and of course because "they had no other rooms available" (at 2 in the afternoon?).

It has happened to me too, but I think it's also very dependent on the particular desk clerk you get. I once got that very same hotel (Times Square Hilton) through Hotwire and when I arrived, they acknowledged that we had booked through Hotwire, and then asked which we preferred, Empire State Bldg. view or the other side, high or low, etc. It was a great room with a great view. Other times (Westin Times Square), we got a nice room, but with a disdainful attitude (Oh, I see you booked on Hotwire).

 
Old Feb 22nd, 2008, 11:28 AM
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In allocating the last two rooms to the last two guests, I suppose the hotel might base their decision on how much each guest paid. They might also consider other factors, such as which guest is more likely to return if treated well. Or they might also consider which guest is more likely to leave a very public online review of the place.
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