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BurBunny

New Priceline Interface

By BurBunny,
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Noticed today while bidding that Priceline has significantly upgraded their interface. Instead of waiting for the email with a link to your results, after you click "Buy" you will be taken to a "waiting" page for a short period of time, then will be given your results directly on the screen. In addition, the traditional email with link will also be sent a few minutes later.

It will be interesting to see how this pans out in wait time for acceptances vs. rejections. In the past, you could often tell by how quickly the email arrived whether or not you were close to an acceptable price or if there was inventory (if a rejection was quick, you were probably out of luck for rebids as well). My acceptance was pretty quick, within a minute or so on DSL. Look forward to hearing other's results as well.

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I submit many bids and my experience has been that there's no correlation between the wait time and the end result.

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I've read, but I have no idea if it's true, that the waiting period is a random thing Priceline puts in to make it appear to you like their system is hard at work searching down the best deal for you. In actual fact, the real search period is very brief.

When I get a chance, I'd like to take a look at Priceline's patents, as well as get a better idea of their long-term business strategies. I'd also like to know what type of computer systems and databases and CRM software they use.

I posted a few weeks ago about getting a personal email from a Priceline HK customer service person inviting me to use Lucky Money, telling me by how much to raise my bid, and offering to perform the rebid for me (resulting in what appears to be a relatively slight overbid when I agreed to this).

As far as I know, though, Priceline.com has no similar human input into bids (but I could be wrong).

When I tried to bid on Oslo with Priceline.com a few days ago, I immediately got a rejection and a screen showing me lowestfare.com "deals," that were not that great. I wonder if that means there is no hope of getting a room in Oslo with Priceline.

I'm also curious about if someone puts in a really high bid (say $500) in a moderately-priced but small market which has no inventory, will Priceline find some way to accept that bid?

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This post was originally refering to the switch from "we'll let you know within 15 minutes" to the now "2 minutes 'we're searching" screen; which is a huge improvement.

I think the difference between the sometimes 45 second response and the sometimes 2 minute response is partially the way their systems are set up and partially a wait for credit card approval (sometimes when i charge soemthing at a store it takes longer at the cash register than other times... Priceline's computers have a variable wait time as well).

I don't think they'd go the extra effort to find a hotel for an outrageous price... they either have inventory or they don't (see my comments below about automation of the process). Very often when we (the user) think they don't have any inventory, when they actually may, but at a price equal to or greater than conventional rates. Being informed bidders, we never get a chance to see it because we'd sooner book thru conventional means, given the same costs.

I believe the entire system is automated. I seem to recall that they have about 350 employees and do about $1.2 Billion in revenue per year... that's A LOT of transactions, especially given their revenue is based upon discounted rates. I don't think they'd be able to perform that many transactions if there was any human intervention involved (my aplogies to those of you that work very efficiently :) ).

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Lately, when I've been bidding it'll sometimes come up with this screen that says it can take up to 15 minutes or longer to get the results of the bid............it seems to be happening a lot more lately....what's up with this?

:)

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Sometimes they revert back to their old system when they get busy or there is a glitch somewhere along the line... such as not getting an immediate response from the credit card company.

EXCLUSIVELY at BetterBidding:
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(click here) and use promo code: BBSEP20
(Express Deals or PrePaid Hotels / 3+ stars / 2+ nites... expires 09/30/2020)

Please use this HOTWIRE and these PRICELINE LINKS: HOTELS, CAR RENTALS, and AIRFARE to begin your travel purchases

Want to know if Rates Drop?? Get alerts at RateDrop.com

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Has this happened to anyone before?

a few days ago, I submitted my bid, entered credit card details and everything, click "buy my hotel now", then a PL page with something like "new...shop and compare" appears.

There was no reply for my bid (nothing at all), not in the subsequent display nor in my email box. I emailed PL and they had no record whatsoever of my bid. My bid had disappeared into thin air.

I suspect this may be a problem of my computer. My computer may have some sort of firewall so that my bid is not going through to PL.

I wish somebody could help me. Thanks.

The bid is for Milford,MA July 15, 4 nights. But I guess this is irrelevant.

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Are you using a profile for your bid? That can make it easier to track.

On some occasions, I think Priceline has no opaque hotels in an area and just uses the interface to encourage you to buy their non-opaque hotels. I'm not sure if that happened here, though.

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Many thanks, Willtravel.

Just for trial, I put in test bids for other popular regions (Secaucus, NJ) with unreasonably low $$, and I got some relevant response, so now I am sure that THERE IS communication between my computer and priceline.

Probably Milford,MA has no opaque hotels or something's wrong about that region.

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I often get this screen after two bids, and maybe I'm starting off too low on my first bid. I am forced to close my browser and re-access the Priceline website (of course through Savingsbarn.com) jut to start bidding again. In fact, this happened to me most often when bidding for rooms in the Newark, NJ area; Secaucus-Meadowlands and Secaucus-North Bergen. There is no fast way to get back to a bidding screen, I must log back on as if I'm starting a new bid. Extremely frustrating and time consuming, and I feel I'm being punished by priceline for starting out bidding too low, it's as if they think I'm just "kicking the tires" and not really serious about buying a hotel room. :) As a result, I have wasted several rebid opportunities in the 2.5* and up category and have settles a few times for a 2* property, ending up in places like the Wellsley Inn, Extended Stay America and the rest. This is yet another reason why I am using Hotwire more than priceline.

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