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Interesting difference in rates using booking site

Interesting difference in rates using booking site

Old Jul 29th, 2022, 05:33 AM
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Interesting difference in rates using booking site

I am planning a trip to Dallas for a graduation and including making reservations at a specific hotel for family members. I searched today for the final reservation after making others over the past month. I went first to the hotel site and got a rate significantly more than the other two I made. Then decided to go to hotels.com and got alightly lower rate using my login. THEN went to booking.com and saved a significant amount with my login (but not using any "points"). I was really (pleasantly) surprised, but have thought that hotels and booking were the same usually. Just an FYI
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Old Jul 29th, 2022, 06:51 AM
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I've noticed that sort of thing a few times over the years. I gave up on Hotels . com because they 'lost' a significant amount of points and would not reinstate them. So now I either use Booking or the hotel's own site. Usually I check Booking when first researching for a property, then check the hotel's site.

Maybe 25-ish% of the time booking is either cheaper or has room categories I want that are not available directly from the hotel.
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Old Jul 29th, 2022, 07:09 AM
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Something Gretchen said made me curious - Booking.com doesn't have a point system, does it? They have different levels - I'm Genus Level , whatever that means, but they don't have a system that allows you to accrue and use points - do they? I've used them for years and would hate to think I've missed out on this.

As for the difference in Hotels.com and Booking.com, I often find that Booking.com has more restrictive cancellation polices than Hotels.com. But as a general rule I always check both.
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Old Jul 29th, 2022, 07:13 AM
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Just took a good look at Booking.com...seems those 'travel rewards' are automatically applied, so no, I'm not missing anything.




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Old Jul 29th, 2022, 07:20 AM
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Thanks for this thread, Gretchen. It pays to compare.
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Old Jul 29th, 2022, 08:27 AM
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My experience is that booking.com tends to have rates slightly lower than hotels.com but hotels.com does "10 stamps give you a free night".

There is also Priceline which is part of booking.com and sometimes has even better rates since it is prepay (although can be refundable).

Sometimes hotels have packages where you get a free night with purchase of others but mostly they just match the discount brokers, and usually you need a promo code to get that match.
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Old Jul 29th, 2022, 09:03 AM
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Originally Posted by Melnq8 View Post
Something Gretchen said made me curious - Booking.com doesn't have a point system, does it? They have different levels - I'm Genus Level , whatever that means, but they don't have a system that allows you to accrue and use points - do they? I've used them for years and would hate to think I've missed out on this.

As for the difference in Hotels.com and Booking.com, I often find that Booking.com has more restrictive cancellation polices than Hotels.com. But as a general rule I always check both.
Hotels.com has a 'points' system, whereas Booking has levels but not 'points' AFAIK. I've used Booking.com for 5 hotels over last year and over the next couple of months (two in London, one in Tacoma, one in Sacramento and one in Salt Lake City, and all had very generous cancellation policies. I've found in general the cancellation options tend to be much more generous than in the past which may be more to do with the hotels still recovering from the covid downturn.
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Old Jul 29th, 2022, 12:40 PM
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Recently I've noticed that some sites, like Expedia and Booking, sometimes have stricter cancellation policies than the hotel's website has.

Booking direct may show a 48 hr cancellation policy, while booking the same room at the same price via expedia may come with a 72 hr cancellation policy. I guess the idea is, well, profit. if you cancel at, say, the 64 hour mark, Expedia can get a full refund from the hotel while not offering that refund to the customer.

Tricky? Or just good business?
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Old Jul 29th, 2022, 01:17 PM
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Yes I have noticed that cancellation policies are sometimes worse on the third party sites. It also pays to become a member of the hotel loyalty program which can often get you better rates and cancellation policies.

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Old Jul 29th, 2022, 03:28 PM
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Once upon a time, things had a single price for everyone and anyone. Now everyone wants a deal, so the price is variable depending on how you try to buy it ns who you are nd the phase of the moon. Bah!
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Old Jul 29th, 2022, 06:03 PM
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Many hotels will match or beat prices offered on third party sites. Taking advantage of this may require making a phone rather than online reservation.

I avoid Expedia after having been burned by them a couple times in the past. Seem to be using booking.com most often these days and have been pleased.
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Old Jul 29th, 2022, 11:06 PM
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I wish some (math teacher) would come down from above and truly correct us all and inform from an objective point of view whether constant shopping around for online hotel rates can make a major difference over the long, long run.


I LOVED Priceline bidding like nothing else I've ever experienced in the hotel booking world... (in some small psychological part because I largely didn't CARE which specific property I'd get ).

* I also had the patience and the attention to detail to be adequate at Free Rebids and was almost never in a rush to where I made a mistake.


BUT NOW, Priceline's website seems to be worth near zero where it concerns room rates...

And I am deeply disappointed when browsing all over the online world at every hotel booking site known to mankind...

and finding that THIS room at THAT hotel just happens to be an arbitrary "$259" (or "$459") on every single booking site.

*now maybe there's a perk now and again where you stay 8 nights and get one free, or whatever... but I don't land at one booking website often enough to ever make use of that, so it's worthless to me


I'm almost thankful that Covid times have greatly reduced any interest I had in traveling.


I mean, there should be SOME potential payoff for hunting around to 3 or 6 hotel booking sites... and the more I look, the less substantial any such discount seems to be.



(LOL - BUT, tiz possible that everyone else is doing it right and that I am doing it wrong )

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Old Jul 30th, 2022, 04:36 AM
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I haven't used the bidding part of the Priceline/Hotwire sites in years. They add on extra fees that typically negate any savings for nonrefundable rooms.

Now that the discounters have consolidated to be "Priceline/booking/Agoda/Kayak" and "Expedia/Hotels.com/Hotwire/Orbitz/Travelocity" it really isn't necessary to spend a lot of time searching for better rates.

Because I care where I stay, I often use Google Maps as a search engine. Then I cross check the hotel's own rates and booking and hotels.com. Unless booking and hotels have an extra 'coupon code' they rarely are better anymore.

Lately I am mostly avoiding the big chains if I can find a mom and pop inn or B&B. I figure the owner will clean the room with enough notice if there are not enough housekeepers to turn rooms between guests. Sometimes I have to physically pick up a phone to make a booking, LOL. Downside is they are more likely to charge a small fee if you cancel since it is harder for them to rebook their rooms. Fair enough.

Last edited by mlgb; Jul 30th, 2022 at 04:42 AM.
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Old Jul 30th, 2022, 06:48 AM
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If the place I want to book is similarly priced on Hotels.com and Booking.com - same room type, similar cancellation policy, I'll use Hotels.com, so I can earn points for a free night. I've earned and used several free nights using Hotels.com over the past few years.

But, if it's a Hyatt property (for which I'm a member of their loyalty program), and the hotel is offering the same rooms at similar prices to Hotels.com and Booking.com, I'll book with the hotel so I can earn (or redeem) points. But I'm not willing to pay a boatload more on the hotel's website just to earn points, as they (and just about everyone else) have devalued their points over the years.
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Old Jul 31st, 2022, 04:43 PM
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I figure hotels.com shouldn't exceed 10% more than the best rate elsewhere (since it takes ten nights to get a free one). I just burned a reward in May, so not I'm even less likely to book with them now.
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Old Aug 7th, 2022, 09:16 AM
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Originally Posted by mlgb View Post
I haven't used the bidding part of the Priceline/Hotwire sites in years. They add on extra fees that typically negate any savings for nonrefundable rooms.



Uh, nobody has used the "bidding part" of Priceline for years.

And the fees they added on were minimal when cross-referenced with local taxes (paid on the full "rack rate" that was your alternative).

One didn't sensibly use Priceline until he no longer had reason to need a refund.


Lastly, it was never really accurate that most people were saving money through the use of Priceline bidding. BUT the luxury of a Westin or some such thing sure beat the 9pm hunt for vacant motels out by the highway (to which everybody's dad used to subject them) for just about the same total price.

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Old Aug 7th, 2022, 09:09 PM
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I know Booking.com doesnít take 10% off every room at the genius level, but they do on most and thatís a better deal that the hotels.com stay 10 nights get one free.

Last year oscillated between the hotelís booking site with points, or booking.com at $20 less. I took the money over the points.
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Old Aug 8th, 2022, 09:17 AM
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Originally Posted by NorthwestMale View Post
Uh, nobody has used the "bidding part" of Priceline for years.

And the fees they added on were minimal when cross-referenced with local taxes (paid on the full "rack rate" that was your alternative).

One didn't sensibly use Priceline until he no longer had reason to need a refund.


Lastly, it was never really accurate that most people were saving money through the use of Priceline bidding. BUT the luxury of a Westin or some such thing sure beat the 9pm hunt for vacant motels out by the highway (to which everybody's dad used to subject them) for just about the same total price.

You do know that the "regular" part of Priceline is the same as booking.com (they are owned by the same conglomerate)? It just requires upfront payment. If you are a VIP member, sometimes Priceline is better, sometime not . The rare time I book 'nonrefundable' I am on the road as you say, and there is no reason to hunt for 9pm hotels or motels anymore, no matter what site one uses.

With COVID and hotel understaffing and cutbacks on all services and breakfast, there is little incentive to pay more for a big hotel chain room unless you are a member using/earning points.



Last edited by mlgb; Aug 8th, 2022 at 09:20 AM.
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Old Aug 8th, 2022, 09:39 AM
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Originally Posted by Melnq8 View Post
Just took a good look at Booking.com...seems those 'travel rewards' are automatically applied, so no, I'm not missing anything.
I suppose that explains what Gretvhen experienced.
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