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Second class treatment for Priceline guests?


47 replies to this topic

#1 Wiseguy

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Posted 01 September 2010 - 04:03 PM

I stayed last weekend in Lafayette IN and had a little issue with the front desk clerk. he hotle was pretty empty and I wanted a room with two doubles instead of a king. The clerk said "We don`t usually change Priceline rooms" kind of snotty.

I use Priceline quite a bit and have noticed this attitude from time to time from the hotels desk clerks. It is like you are not a regualr guest because you did not choose the hotel or you are paying half price.

Anyone else have an issue like this before?

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#2 yellowdog

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Posted 01 September 2010 - 05:05 PM

Members post this from time to time. And have to say that i don't belive he is super nice to a full paying guests. He just got a bad attitude and reminded you about the PRICELINE room guarantee in a bad way.

And to be honest. I wouldn't care if someone said that to me. Since i'm the smart guest that isn't paying the rack rate. And have in mind that the hotel needs the business if they got PRICELINE inventory.

Just think about your saving$ and sleep tight :)

Yellowdog.

#3 dahammer

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Posted 01 September 2010 - 06:36 PM

The clerk said "We don`t usually change Priceline rooms" kind of snotty.


My response: "Really? That's odd, because I this is the first time that I've heard that, I have always been given two doubles unless the hotel is sold out....can you please check to see if you have any rooms with two doubles?" If denied, ask to speak with the front desk manager. Sometimes desk clerks go on power trips, just try and get them to direct their power in your favor, smile :) and say the clerk's name. I can't think the last time I've been denied, I prefer two doubles because I can lay my garment bag on one bed and use the other.

You're obviously a big PRICELINE user, so welcome and hope that you can report your future winning bids to make the betterbidding board better.

#4 blkjck1

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Posted 03 September 2010 - 05:21 PM

Sometimes it just depends on the hotel, and sometimes on the person manning the front desk. In downtown Toronto, I once got myself upgraded on a Priceline booking because I made the front desk person laugh. I've also stayed at a hotel through Hotwire that tried to stick me in a room with two twin beds for my wife and I, and when I went back downstairs and asked nicely to be changed, they moved us to a room with a queen.

It could be that the hotel feels that if you aren't going to pay the full price for a room, you should not get the same level of amenities as the customer paying the going rate. I don't think that's totally unfair. If you're going to pay second class rates, you should not be surprised at getting second class product or service. Or it's luck of the draw. If all the available regular rooms have been spoken for, and you get there, you may find yourself in a premium room because they have to put you somewhere.
Proud to be Canadian!

#5 hohogap

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Posted 03 September 2010 - 06:46 PM

Great comments. I've also had all of these types of experiences. Being nice, friendly and cooperative has always been my best advice. I had a Priceline room in Santa Rosa where the Priceline reservation didn't show up on the hotel computer (I did at 8 PM) and after showing my reservation "confirmation" sheet, the hotel desk clerk let me use their phone, had Priceline call them back and when they couldn't work it out (they were somewhat empty in March) the hotel allowed me to stay and they took the reservation confrimation sheet and said they'd work it out with Priceline. I was flabbergasted and pleased. Usually it's just the comment, "Oh, I see you booked with Priceline so we'll still need a credit card for incidentals." I happily give it to them, save 50% or more and chrage $5 so I might get my hotel bonus points for a stay!!

#6 elizcog

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Posted 04 October 2010 - 07:21 PM

I have never had anyone comment one way or another and anytime I have a request it is honored. Now I usually book 3* or higher, am always very pleasant to the staff and already know that if anyone ever does make a negative comment I plan to turn on the charm and let them know that yes, I am so pleased to be staying in an establishment as nice as theirs because when your travel budget is tight it would not be an option if I had to pay published rates. I will then ask if they have ever used Priceline and let them know they may be able to visit places they would not believe if they used Priceline.

If that does not turn an attitude around, then they are the person who has to live with the negativity NOT ME ! :)

Like another poster, I am fine with a minimally reduced level of service in exchange for a drastic savings on lodging. It is not how any guest should be treated but I can handle it if it arises.

#7 desmoines

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Posted 06 October 2010 - 08:59 PM

Hi I'm new here and just registered today. Looking to get back down to Florida around Christmas. I've used Priceline for several years and can say they have been pretty good to me. I have learned to double check the hotels when it seems "too good to be true", for example about three years ago I booked a package for my daugher and I to Key Largo Grand Resort. Great spot and hotel was not bad even though we were facing the highway and not the beach side and half the hotel was under Hurricane reconstruction (the rental car drive from Miami to Key Largo was an adventure all its own) Another trip I took two years ago to Phoenix and booked a hotel by the airport that was a 3 star- Yes and it too was under construction and in the middle of a reconstruction zoned area with nothing around but ghetto neighborhoods.
- I haven't used Hotwire but might try it out. Thanks.

#8 satzx

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Posted 18 October 2010 - 12:11 PM

I have had such experience too when I was at an Extended Stay in Pittsburgh, they have a number of rooms that are out dated and kept aside for Priceline bookings and declined to give me two double beds instead of a queen bed. They clearly stated that they will not change the room for priceline bookings.

#9 CruisingUSA

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Posted 25 October 2010 - 04:57 PM

I cant see why someone from a "3rd party billing' site would get treated less. We may be paying less, but thats because #1 we have no idea what we are going to get...only a guess. And #2, its nonrefundable or changeable. Most people I speak to dont have the GUTS to bid on a hotel. They rather stay in 2 star hotels paying $60 a night rather than gamble for a 4 star at that same price.

People who pay full price can change and cancel plans whenever, but once we click the button...it comes right out our account. Fortunently I've had only 1 instance where I truly did not want to keep the hotel, it took priceline about 2 weeks to finally agree refund me, and another 3 days after that.

I do miss the fact that as a rewards member with Mariott and Holiday Inn, I dont get any points (damn, we should atleast get 1/2 points LOL)...But some places do honor your card and treat you a little better when they see the rewards card, but many of them say, "you dont get anything for going thru priceline or hotwire unless you order off the menu"

For example, I was hoping to get the extended stay hotel today...I just bidded and got something else. A bit nicer, but I was planning on cooking lunch and dinner

#10 MurtleCake

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Posted 28 October 2010 - 04:12 PM

I've never had a problem. Why would the minimum wage front desk clerk care where I booked my hotel room? It's not of concern to them. I've been to many hotels from Priceline/Hotewire/LMT and they've treated me great, let me check in early, nobody ever seemed to poo poo that I booked my room on Priceline.

Certain hotels they charge different prices for different rooms...like some charge extra for 2 beds, or for certain views, or floors.. then I'd understand. But I've never been treated inferior because I was a Priceline customer. It is safe to say, if half the hotel is remodeled, you are getting the old room. But you paid a significant amount less, I wouldn't complain.

If I have a ton of special needs for a trip, I may try booking through the hotel directly. But If you do your research before hand and make sure the hotels you could possibly win will suit your needs it shouldn't be problem.

I agree with CrusingUSA people are just scared!! I've saved so much money, and been in much nicer hotels thanks to Priceline. Some of my vacations, like to Seattle, if I had to pay full price for a room I couldn't go! Some of the rooms were double or triple what I paid on Priceline. Sure, I've had issues where the hotel isn't ideal, But I've never been truly upset or disappointed. A 3 star is always a 3 star..etc

#11 Bob24

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Posted 14 November 2010 - 07:54 AM

I have noticed some slightly different treatment at certain places. But, the treatment hasn't been near enough to have me steer away from Priceline or Hotwire.

For example, I called the Westin in Kansas City to confirm my reservation a few days before my arrival. I requested a 1 king bed room. They said that they were currently fully booked for one king bed rooms and that since I had booked on Priceline my request for a king room would be slotted behind the requests of people that had booked through the hotel. I was paying $61 a night, the hotel was getting $249 a night on their website. I could live with two beds for that savings. As it turned out, there must have been cancellations because I got a king bed room afterall.

However, I have gotten complimentary upgrades and early check-ins going through Priceline as well. It all works out in the end. I have literally saved thousands of dollars and stayed in places I would have never stayed at if I had to pay full price.

#12 CruisingUSA

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Posted 17 November 2010 - 06:07 AM

I am beginning to get the jist of this 3rd party billing thing. The best deals come when you book hotels that are 2.5 stars and up...

Today, I checked into a comfort Inn. Althought the switched the default smoking room that Priceline stuck me with (Im not a smoker, what the hell?) and gave me 1 king bed, the room was INFESTED with roaches. One on the bathroom sink and another crawled on my foot. I became hysterical and told the front desk person I wanted a different HOTEL immediately. I packed my shit in no time flat. There's nothing in the world Im more afraid of than roaches. If I see 1 my skin crawls. To have 1 crawl on my foot pretty much had me jumping everytime my clothes rubbed against my skin.

She instead switched me to the other side of the hotel, which was nicer, newer and had a microfridge. So far, after frantically searching I've found no roaches (and hopefully non have crawled in my bag, as I'd be hardpressed to transfer the demons into my car OR any other hotel OR my new apartment OR this room Im currently in...GROOSSSS!!). I have stayed in 1 star hotels before and never seen a roach, so its shocking to see that here.

They wont hesistate to stick you in the crappiest room they've got...but I am not the type to just accept any old room. You're less likely to run into that with the higher star level hotels. But I just dont like having to pay for everything in the higher end hotels. $18 for a half-decent breakfast?

#13 jkbritt

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Posted 04 March 2011 - 01:42 AM

I bid and won the Movinpick in Amsterdam around July 15, 2010. Got it for $80.00 per night. When I arrived, the clerk upgraded me to a suite!! It was so big I kidded my wife that we would have to pack a lunch just to go to the bathroom, it was so far away. Normally, the Movinpick is over 200.00 per night. Thanks Priceline.

#14 yellowdog

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Posted 04 March 2011 - 07:06 AM

jkbritt

It would be appreciated if you post your wins on the board so all members can gain from the information like you do :)

Please use the PRICELINE and HOTWIRE links on the board to begin your travel purchases.

Yellowdog.

#15 drjbo3

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Posted 24 March 2011 - 03:18 AM

FWIW, If you want two beds, always search for 3 (or 4) people in a room. Often 3 will search different that 4 guests on Hotwire. Most hotels will only guarantee the minimum number of beds to accommodate your listed overnight guests. Three or four people always need two beds! I do this whenever I travel with a girlfriend who I like...but don't want to share a bed with. ;-)

Good luck next time,
Janet

#16 stabbincabin

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Posted 18 April 2011 - 06:26 PM

I've honestly noticed the "nicer" the hotel the less they care about where you booked. I was in Miami this February (before i found this site) and stayed at a Beautiful Sheraton at the Airport. The help was as kind as can be......on the other token the night before i stayed at a semi-rundown Holiday Inn and the front desk clerk made somewhat of a snide remark.

I can honestly say I've booked 5 or 6 different Sheraton's across the nation and have always been treated like a first class customer. You go to the lower end 3*'s that are "Family owned and opperated" you get the strange look that just says "you must be a cheap bastard". The reason for that is usually the person working the front desk at those type of hotels is the owner or a relative of the owner who gets a cut of profits.

#17 sylver2

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Posted 03 July 2011 - 06:25 PM

i have noticed a few times that the hotels tended to give me their old raggedy rooms. once a hotel i booked thru priceline put us in an older room with no bathtub or shower stall. the shower had a curtain and it was concrete floor. i complained and they said they were SOLD OUT..nothing available. sooo later on i thought i saw a bed bug and freaked. they immediately moved us to another room upstairs. i couldn't believe these new & improved beautiful rooms. and ithought they were sold out:-/. had us down in the basement cause we paid priceline rate.

#18 Z3R0

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Posted 04 July 2011 - 07:44 AM

If you arrive at a hotel and think you're being discriminated against for booking through a third party, call the company you booked with. They usually have ways of dealing with these issues, and most of them take steps to prevent such treatment in the future.
Adversity is like a flame, it melts the weak and tempers the strong.

#19 MrCravat

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Posted 10 July 2011 - 10:42 PM

I stayed at two Priceline won Hotel bids and encountered no problems..

I had 2 bids accepted for the Wyndham Garden University Place in Pittsburgh in May..7 Nights and then 2 Nights( two separate bids) and the Front Desk was very nice and just said "we do offer rooms on Priceline" and gave me a room on the 7th floor of Nine.

I booked a last night at the Courtyard by Marriott near the Airport and nothing was said & although the room was at the end of two corridors it was of the standard that you would expect from Marriott and the front desk were great for other matters.

I was in Texas last September and stayed with friends in Dallas for one night at the Hilton Garden after they booked two rooms for $40 per night and I got a great room on the 5th floor..

I'm staying at the Sheraton this November and will report here my experiences..

#20 Blueandgreen

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Posted 11 July 2011 - 07:49 AM

I've used Priceline probably close to a hundred times - 98% of the time there is no problem with being a "Priceliner" but I did get the "great, I'm checking in trash" kind of behavior at a Hyatt one time. I was on a road trip and just needed to sleep, I pricelined a 4 star room at the Hyatt that's cheapest price was $169/night for $45 from their parking lot on my laptop... The view sucked but who cares - the room was clean and beautiful and I slept like a baby... I mentioned it the next day on check out, they apologized.

I never have problems making changes on beds (as a Priceliner) in Florida which is my primary area of bookings but I've made 4 trips to NYC in last 8 months and they have either refused to change from king to 2 beds or charged me $20/night extra - even though their website sells both rooms for same price. And they all (NY hotels so far) say they don't do requests for rooms booked through Priceline.

Those are my experiences...

#21 mbstone

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Posted 28 August 2011 - 07:04 AM

How to deal with PL/HW Attitude in a nutshell.

"You know, when I'm traveling on the boss's dime, I pay rack rates but when I'm spending my own money I use PL. You'd do the same, wouldn't you?"

#22 aussie36

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Posted 03 September 2011 - 10:11 AM

I had the opposite of second class treatment for a lot of my trip. Hyatt Regency in Phx upgraded me to a bigger room on a top floor with view, same with Trump in Vegas and in Seattle, the Grand Hyatt moved me from a room with 2 doubles and a view of the parking garage, to a big king room with water views and a bath on a high floor! No bad treatment for being a priceline customer and it clearly didn't count against me in terms of upgrades either.

#23 crito

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Posted 04 September 2011 - 12:54 PM

I booked the Providence Westin on Hotwire. Phoned in advance to ask for two beds, and was told (as is pretty typical) that they couldn't promise Hotwire customers any particular room type. But when I checked in they were happy to give me the two queen beds. (Though in fact they were not queen beds but double beds -- this seems to be a very common trick/mistake.) And the room was on a high floor, far from elevators, good view.

#24 big turk

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Posted 01 December 2011 - 05:13 PM

On maybe a couple of occasions I've been given what I presume to be "the priceline room" or "the hotwire room", i.e. view of a brick wall or some such thing, but that has been offset by the occasional free upgrades or other courtesies that I have received. I should note that I'm not a particularly demanding guest since I basically show up, get a key and then almost never have any contact with hotel staff until check out.

On the whole I don't think I've done any worse in terms of service than had I booked through the hotels themselves (except that I don't get points like SPG, etc. which could get me upgrades down the road). Unpleasant desk clerks are probably going to be unpleasant no matter who you booked through. And if I have... well, the cost savings more than make up for it!

#25 KatiesMom

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Posted 20 February 2012 - 08:49 PM

Some hotels are dreadful when it comes to Hotwire/Priceline.

A couple months ago a friend of mine booked a room at the Royal Sonesta, 4*, Cambridge, MA on Hotwire for herself, husband and their two girls (10,14). She decided on Hotwire over Priceline because she wanted to make sure there were two beds for the four of them (She plugged in 2 adults, 2 kids). She told me about this trip only after it was booked so I couldn't hook her up here with BetterBidding.

When she went to check in, the hotel clerk said Hotwire had booked them for a room with one queen bed. The clerk said the hotel was sold out and couldn't give her a room with two beds.

My friend was so upset she called me while arguing with the clerk because of my experience with Hotwire. I spoke to the clerk on my friend's cell phone and the clerk was firm - "Hotwire only booked one queen bed and that's that."

I told my friend to stay there and I called Hotwire. The Hotwire spokesperson was livid, she said that was an unacceptable response from the hotel. She reviewed my friend's order form and told me it had been filled out properly for 2 adults and 2 kids. She said she would call the clerk right then and straighten it out.

Then the BIZARRE happened - The Royal Sonesta's telephone lines went down and hotwire couldn't get through to them. The clerk was sick of dealing with me over my friend's cell phone, and I heard her say "You all can share one bed." My friend responded, "We aren't sharing one bed with our daughters!" The clerk then said they had a full-sized double rollaway bed that would fit in the room. My friend, who had an appointment to go to, accepted the offer of the rollaway. The clerk also said they would be given free breakfast for the inconvenience.

When they came back that night there was no rollaway bed in the room. They called the front desk, which sent up a tiny cot. One of the girls took it, the other slept on the floor. They had breakfast the next morning and when they went to check out they were charged $100 for it. After arguing that it was supposed to be free, the hotel agreed to remove the charge.

Needless to say, my friend will NEVER use Hotwire again, and I tell people to avoid the Royal Sonesta.

So never say never. I too have never had a problem like this, but I saw firsthand it CAN and DOES happen.



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