By KatiesMom,

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I just got what seems like a deal that is way too good to be true. My husband and I decided to stay one night in NYC following an evening at a Broadway show. We live in Connecticut, a train ride away, so if I couldn't get a good hotel deal, it was no biggie, we'd skip it.

Our travel date is: May 22 to May 23, one night. Rack rates are very high at this time. I called The Benjamin where I have stayed before and gotten good deals, and the best they could do was $415 a night.

I went to Priceline, via the link on BetterBidding, and bid up to $175 for 4*, various Manhattan zones, no dice.

On Hotwire, the cheapest acceptable I could find was $266 for a 3.5* in Hell's Kitchen.

I scoured kayak.com and they had a link to a listing on booking.com for $99 a night for Le Parker Meridien, a very nice 4* hotel. Superior King Room. So, I booked it.

WHAT? How on earth could they offer that price? The hotel's cheapest price on that date - for a superior room with 2 single beds is $569. (Online they aren't offering a Superior King for that travel date.)

I never used booking.com before, so I read up on it online and there were some complaints made, mostly about European bookings, and mostly about cancellation policies.

I plan on calling Le Parker Meridien directly and confirming our reservation.

Should I be nervous?

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Well, I just answered my own question. Passing this info along to help others who may confront the same thing.

I called Le Parker Meridien's "In House" reservations, and they said Booking.com had made a mistake and due to a "system error" advertised rooms for $99. They are not honoring those reservations. (I have yet to hear anything from booking.com.)

As a gesture, the hotel offered me a discounted rate. They'll give me a room that is regularly $659 for $489. No thanks, we'll take the train back.

So, caveat emptor. Always check out a "deal."

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Just got the following email from booking card, claiming there was an issue with my credit card information. There isn't, and as of this moment, they are still advertising the $99 deal.

Guess what travel company I will no longer deal with?


We have been contacted by Le Parker Meridien New York. It seems that the credit card details you supplied are invalid.

What to do:

Click here to update your credit card details: MyBooking

You can also contact Le Parker Meridien New York for further assistance.

Important: Please do this within 24 hours to ensure the hotel does not attempt to charge your card or cancel your reservation.

You still have a reservation at this hotel unless you receive a cancellation email.

You could possibly still be charged by the hotel:

For a no-show

For late cancellation

For prepayment

All payments are processed by the hotel.

We are also available 24 hours a day to answer your questions.

Kind regards,


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Here it is 6:30 p.m., and still no other word from Booking.com. I responded in an email that the credit card issue was because Le Parker Meridien told me they were not going to charge my credit card because the deal was off. No $99 rooms. Not a WORD from booking.com. Nothing. What if I hadn't contacted Le Parker Meridien and thought my deal was valid?

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Was on the phone with a booking.com rep for an hour. She called Le Parker Meridien and said it was the hotel's fault. She said the hotel decided not to honor the $99 rate, not booking.com.

She said she asked the hotel if they were willing to go down to around $169 for the night in light of the inconvenience caused to the customer, but she said they said no.

She apologized, and said booking.com couldn't do anything more because in this case it was the hotel's fault.

So, no room for us.

Someone's not telling the truth. I don't know enough about either entity to know which it is.

Any thoughts?

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Booking.com is owned by PRICELINE. Here is a quote from their scope of service:

Through the website we (Booking.com B.V. and its affiliate (distribution) partners) provide an online platform through which all types of temporary accommodations (for example, hotels, motels, hostels and bed & breakfasts), can advertise their rooms for reservation, and through which visitors to the website can make such reservations. By making a reservation through Booking.com, you enter into a direct (legally binding) contractual relationship with the accommodation provider at which you book. From the point at which you make your reservation, we act solely as an intermediary between you and the provider, transmitting the details of your reservation to the relevant accommodation provider and sending you a confirmation email for and on behalf of the accommodation provider.

When rendering our services, the information that we disclose is based on the information provided to us by accommodation providers. As such, the accommodation providers are given access to an extranet through which they are fully responsible for updating all rates, availability and other information which is displayed on our website. Although we will use reasonable skill and care in performing our services we will not verify if, and cannot guarantee that, all information is accurate, complete or correct, nor can we be held responsible for any errors (including manifest and typographical errors), any interruptions (whether due to any (temporary and/or partial) breakdown, repair, upgrade or maintenance of our website or otherwise), inaccurate, misleading or untrue information or non-delivery of information. Each accommodation provider remains responsible at all times for the accuracy, completeness and correctness of the (descriptive) information (including the rates and availability) displayed on our website. Our website does not constitute and should not be regarded as a recommendation or endorsement of the quality, service level, qualification or (star) rating of any accommodations made available.

I would call the general manager of the hotel and demand they honor the $99 rate as it appears they made the mistake. The revenue manager made a boo boo when loading prices into the Booking.com site. They made the mistake, they should deal with it.

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A representative from Le Parker Meridien insists it was not their problem, it was booking.com's fault. In fact, she said, because of this experience they have suspended service at this time with booking.com.

However, she offered me the rate of $189 a night for the room. Now I have to decide if I want it. I'm leaning towards taking it. Considering how rates are for next week, it seems worthwhile.

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