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Bidding on Priceline for San Francisco... help


Jun 29th, 2010, 03:14 AM
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Bidding on Priceline for San Francisco... help

Hi everyone

We are going to San Francisco in August and a few fellow fodorites have suggested I try Priceline... but to also ask for help before I bid as I am new to this site! I am looking at staying in clean, central accomodation for 4 nights. Any suggestions as to the best way to tackle Priceline?


LakesideChick is offline  
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Jun 29th, 2010, 04:44 AM
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Well, you need to start with betterbidding.com and biddingfortravel.com to learn the ropes. There are a lot of tricks you can use to improve your chances of success.

That said, you want to know which hotels are in which classes in the areas where you want to be, and you need to know whether location or class is more important to you.

You are likely to get the best prices in hotels where lots of tourists stay (Fisherman's Wharf) or where there are lots of conventions/business travelers (Union Square) -- at a non-convention time when they have lots of open rooms.
Ackislander is offline  
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Jun 29th, 2010, 08:39 AM
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In San Francisco, there are two, at most three, areas that you should bid on:

Union Square EAST


and, as backup,

Fisherman's Wharf.

Bid only 4* (FW 3.5*).

Right now, on biddingfortravel, I see a winnig bid of $85 for the 4* Embarcadero Hilton.

Here's my suggestion. When you have understood how to use biddingfortravel (check for latest winning bids in each area, and which hotels are available in each area by the "Hotels List"), then you are ready for a trial run.

Click on the second icon at the top of the biddingfortravel page (the one with the keys and a suitcase).

Bid for a 4* in Union Square East and bid ONE DOLLAR. You will not win anything for a dollar but you'll have made a bid without having major heart palpitations.

Priceline will warn you that you can't get a hotel room for a dollar. Just click on "Skip This Page" or "Continue".

When you have failed, get out of that page. Start again and another trial run. Do as many trial runs as will make you feel comfortable and that you'll understand the process.

When you are thoroughly familiar with the process, then make your real bid.

Right now, I suspect that if you bid $85 for a 4* in the Embarcadero, you will likely get the Hilton. Remember that you cannot choose a specific hotel, just the star level, which is why you need to stay in the top star levels. There is no need to go lower than 4* in San Francisco and yet stay under $100 for your bid.

If you don't get a hotel on your first real bid, don't worry or panic. Wait 24 hours and start your bid again.

The keys to success on Priceline are knowledge and patience.


Under NO circumstances should you bid Union square WEST. The 4* category here is a hodge-podge of hotels, from a low of the Clift and Monaco to a high of the Mark Hopkins. They are also not in the best of locations, for different reasons.


One further note, you should also factor in a parking fee of $30-$50 a night, if you will have a car. This cost will not be included in your Priceline bid.
easytraveler is offline  
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Jun 29th, 2010, 11:43 AM
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SF West borders the Tenderloin so there are some sketchy areas, but some recent friends of mine who just visited SF got Parc 55 hotel on Priceline for something like $60/night. Check out www.hoteldealsrevealed.com for winning Priceline bids in the area. Parc 55 is a great hotel from what I could tell (hotel lobby) and the location is superb. Just walk out the Bart station on Powell and Market (near the cable car turn-around).
MarcJ55 is offline  
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Jun 29th, 2010, 12:21 PM
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That's Union Square West, and like easytraveler, I recommend you do not bid on that area, because parts of it are "too far west" and in a sketchier area. Union Square East is fine, the Embarcadero is great, Fisherman's Wharf is okay, as long as you understand you will be in "tourist central".
sf7307 is offline  
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Jun 29th, 2010, 11:23 PM
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Thank you so much.... I love the idea of trial bidding runs!!! Very excited to begin exploring Priceline Thank you!!!
LakesideChick is offline  
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