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Need help in deciding on Priceline or Hotwire for New York Hotels.

Need help in deciding on Priceline or Hotwire for New York Hotels.

Jun 19th, 2003, 06:42 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 274
Need help in deciding on Priceline or Hotwire for New York Hotels.

I have never used Priceline or Hotwire and I would like some help in a decision between the two. I have read the Betterbidding.com and biddingfortravel.com. What concerns me about Priceline is that people are getting hotels like the Hilton towers and Grand Hyatt
that do not cater to Priceline customers by giving them bad rooms because they used Priceline even though they may be 4* hotels which defeats the purpose of using Priceline.
Hotwire , you can figure out what the hotel is but, it is considerably higher than what you would pay if you used Priceline. I know many people use both of these services on this forum and I would like advice on which to chose.I don't see any sense in using Priceline , if I'm going to recieve a poor room. Please, help me in this decision. Thankyou.
Trisha is offline  
Jun 19th, 2003, 07:20 AM
Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 241
It's a trade-off that only you can really decide... it's all about risk vs. reward.

Many people have used Priceline with no problems and have never received what is often refered to as "the priceline room". Some hotels are notorious for poor service to Priceline customers, and the advantage of Hotwire is you can usually avoid selecting these hotels.

There is a poster on this board that uses both and reports overall being treated better as a Hotwire customer than when she was a Priceline customer... maybe she'll add her thoughts when she sees this post.

Keep in mind that you can read MANY different reviews (ie- some VERY positive and some VERY negative) of the same hotel, even for the same time period... so i think that poor service and poor rooms can be given to just about anyone, regardless of how they booked. Some people expect nothing and are usually pleasantly surprised, others expect a lot and are often disappointed.
Bo is offline  
Jun 19th, 2003, 07:44 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
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Trish I hadn't heard that Priceline customers were being "discriminated against". Where have you seen this? I have heard people have been unhappy in general at the Hyatt. The place is in bad need of renovation (which is scheduled for Jan '04) and service can be slow. I'm unaware of any problems with Hilton Towers. There are 2 ways to partially solve the Hyatt problem. One is to avoid bidding midtown east; the other is to enroll on line (for free) in their rewards program should you get that hotel. It allows you to check in at a separate desk & get certain free amenities like a paper & coffee in the morning.

I personally would concentrate on 4* upper midtown as a bidding area where the hotel options are all IMO good.
mclaurie is offline  
Jun 19th, 2003, 08:00 AM
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 473
trisha, once you're a hotel guest you should be treated the same as any other guest, and if you're not you should speak to a manager. i just got back from nyc -- used priceline to get Hilton at $93 plus tax. The problem was not with priceline, but rather the hotel, the rooms are in a shabby condition, only being partly reno. i got a room that had no temp control, it was like a meat locker. but the hotel was very accomodating in switching the room, and the hotel is in a fantastic location just blocks from central park and the theatre district. soooooo, what i think is that, especially in NYC, spend your dough on other things like theatre tix, and save as much as you can on hotel. you'll be out of the room most of the time in any event.
flopmeister is offline  
Jun 19th, 2003, 09:18 AM
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I've gotten both the Hilton AND the Hyatt on Priceline and was happy with my rooms both times.

If you don't like your room, walk down to the front desk (don't call) and nicely explain to the front desk person why your room is unsatisfactory.

If that doesn't work, call the corporate headquarters directly from your hotel. Remember, even though you are a priceline bid winner, all hotels want you to come back.
Jun 19th, 2003, 09:20 AM
Posts: n/a
One more thing, why would a hotel purposely alienate any customer?

The very last thing a hotel wants is for an unhappy guest to tell other people about a bad stay. Truly, they want to correct the situation before you walk out the door.
Jun 19th, 2003, 09:22 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 274
The site that I heard about the Hilton
Towers is both the Biddingfortravel.com and betterbidding.com sites. They actually come out and say , this is the priceline room.When people object to the room , they say there is nothing we can do. In a way, I do blame Priceline as they star the Hilton Towers as a four star hotel , which it does have rooms that rate that but, you aren't given those rooms, instead you are given poor closet rooms. There have been complants to Priceline but, the complants are ignored.(according to these sites I have been reading)In other words its misleading to rate this hotel a four star when you don't recieve that, if you use Priceline.In bidding for an upper midtown hotel, what have been some experiences have you had doing that? What amount did you bid or should I bid?
Trisha is offline  
Jun 19th, 2003, 11:42 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 3,096
We have stayed at both Priceline and Hotwire Hotels and have not had a problem at either. I would say I have gotten better prices on Priceline tho. I would complain if the hotel was treating you differently than other customers. They have agreed to accept your bid thru Priceline/Hotwire and they had the choice not to.
Cali is offline  
Jun 19th, 2003, 12:01 PM
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Posts: 499
Trisha I just stayed at the Hilton in NYC as did my friends. we got great rooms. I have a recent post you can pull up by clicking on my screen name.
Wendy is offline  
Jun 19th, 2003, 12:14 PM
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 451
Trisha,I went to Priceline.com and got the Inter-Continental at the Barclay for $100 per night.They gave us a room with two double beds,which was an upgrade,and did not charge us any extra.
I've gotten hotels thru Hotwire and Priceline and do not feel I was treated differently because of this....
Debden is offline  
Jun 19th, 2003, 12:27 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 16,715
Trisha, I have not personally bid upper midtown. I just think the hotels in this area are all good & the area is convenient. On biddingfortravel they list Essex House, Intercontinental CPS, Parker Meridien, Drake Swissotel and the Regency. Someone posted getting the Parker Meridien for $125. Someone else got the Intercontinental for $145.

Lately, most midtown east bids get the Hyatt and most midtown west is coming up at the Hilton sooo, if you don't want those, then choose another area or don't use priceline.

Biddingfortravel will give you advice on how much to bid based upon what YOU tell them is your top budget. If this is for the summer, I think you're going to have to pay more than $125 but I could be wrong.

If I were bidding, I'd start out with 5* midtown east (which is only the Waldorf Towers). Then I'd add 4* uppermidtown/cps. If still no acceptance, I'd add 4* ues (which is the Stanhope) Remember if you add a zone that ahs no 4*s (like JFK, UWS etc.) it gets you a "free" change to up your bid. Hope this helps.
mclaurie is offline  
Jun 19th, 2003, 02:16 PM
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Thanks, to everyone who gave advice. It helped as I think I will do Hotwire. If $125.00 is around what I need to pay on priceline, then I would rather do Hotwire and try to figure out the hotel. It's still a savings. I also, have backups: Belvedere $129.00 with breakfast, Warwick $129.00, Crown Plaza Times Square $169.00 . I could just play it safe and chose between these hotels. Thanks again.
Trisha is offline  
Jun 21st, 2003, 07:45 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 890
I've used both sites as well, but personally I prefer Hotwire. I just hate playing the Priceline bidding games, entering my credit card first etc. Some folks love the bidding game so to each his own. Besides, I did have a bad experience with priceline.

My biggest complaint with priceline is not being able to talk to a live operator if necessary. I bid/won a room for 2 nights in Chicago but my priceline confirmation said 3 nights (a computer glitch probably), also my credit card was billed for 3 nights. I let the credit card co. take care of it and I was refunded the $, but it sure would have been nice to have been able to contact priceline directly. When I tried, all I got were a zillion voice prompts but no option to talk to real person! I sent priceline an email making them aware of the error, but all I got in return was some generic response that did not address my problem whatsoever.

No customer service, to me, that's no way to do business. At Hotwire, you can always talk to a real person which gives me peace of mind. Again, this is only from my personal experience but from now on I'm only going to work with Hotwire.
petlover is offline  
Jun 21st, 2003, 10:24 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 17,482
I've used both and believe Priceline's star ratings are more accurate.

We've gotten rooms on PL that seemed a little inferior, and which made us wonder if they'd been held for discount customers. On the other hand, we've been given really nice rooms when the hotel didn't need to do so. And, of course, we've paid full price and gotten crummy rooms, including at the Grand Hyatt NYC.

At another PL Hyatt a couple of weeks ago, I flashed my Hyatt Gold Card when checking in, and the counter person gave me the points and sent us to a better-than-average room. Her screen simply said "prepaid" when I appeared - no mention of PL or Hotwire. I presume that they know, since there are many reports of this hotel on BFT, nonetheless we were treated very well.

I think getting the free "frequent visitor" cards helps; it certainly doesn't hurt.

You can start by looking at which zones the hotels you don't want are located, then try to bid around them on PL. This goes especially for the Midtown East/West zones in NYC and the Downtown/Union Square W. zone in San Francisco
Gardyloo is offline  
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