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Priceline Hotel: Bidding Assistance - 3* Downtown Seattle 10/13-10/18

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Looking for a 3* (preferable, but will go with a 2 1/2*) hotel in Downtown Seattle for 10/13 - 10/18. I have previously bid for the DT area, started at 4* for $60, then adding 3 1/2*, 3* and 2 1/2* with bids up to $75 - all rejected.

I'm learning about the free rebid zones, but a little afraid to try. :)

1 room, 2 adults, Downtown, up to $90 per night

Best rates from hotel websites: Downtown - 3* Holiday Inn Seattle, $133 (AAA), Downtown - 3* Homewood Suites, $198.55 (AAA), Downtown - 3* Warwick, $164 (Internet rate)

Sorry if I didn't do all of this in the correct format, but I'm still trying to learn the ropes. Any advice would be greatly appreciated!

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Welcome to BetterBidding!

Any strategy we suggest will include the use of re-bid zones... are you able to determine your TWO re-bid zones at the 3* level but uncomfortable using them OR are you not really sure which zones to use as your re-bid zones? (Priceline Re-Bidding Explained)

I'll add that the way you have bid is very risky and can easily result in an overbid, as it's not recommended to lower your star rating and increase your bid at the same time (see: If You Lower Your Star Rating Then Lower Your Bid)

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Does Lake Union zone work for you? Downtown and Lake Union are next to each other and now connected by trolley.

The Lake Union Silver Cloud Inn has an internet rate of $116.20 for your dates. Since that rate includes parking and free breakfast it actually comes out less expensive than winning a 3* Downtown for $90 that charges for parking and breakfast. (If you have a car, that is.)

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Ok, I never really thought about lowering my bid when I lower my rating...that makes makes.

If I understand free re-bidding correctly, then if I go for a 3*, Everett and N. Everett are the re-bid zones, and if I go down to 2.5*, then it's only Everett. It does make me a little uncomfortable, but I'll be fine with it if I understood it correctly. If I use the rebids at the 3* level and they are rejected, would I have to wait and start over if I wanted to add 2.5* bc N. Everett has that level? I'm able to bid again today, so I really appreciate the help!

Also, I saw how close Lake Union and Downtown are on the map, but haven't done any research on that area or the hotel prices there. I won't have a car, so is that really close enough to be a viable option? If so, that's a great idea to aadd that zone, as well. It looks like Everett and N. Everett would be the re-bid zones for this, too. Would my strategy be any different if I incorporated Lake Union into my bid?

Thanks so much!

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If I understand free re-bidding correctly, then if I go for a 3*, Everett and N. Everett are the re-bid zones, and if I go down to 2.5*, then it's only Everett.
Correct.
If I use the rebids at the 3* level and they are rejected, would I have to wait and start over if I wanted to add 2.5* bc N. Everett has that level?
After you use up your free rebids for 3* you can start a new series of bidding for 2.5* immediately, without waiting 24 hours. You should exit Priceline and start over when you drop to a lower level of bidding (from 3.5* to 3* or 3* to 2.5*). That allows you to use your free rebid zones again.
Also, I saw how close Lake Union and Downtown are on the map, but haven't done any research on that area or the hotel prices there. I won't have a car, so is that really close enough to be a viable option? If so, that's a great idea to aadd that zone, as well. It looks like Everett and N. Everett would be the re-bid zones for this, too. Would my strategy be any different if I incorporated Lake Union into my bid?
Bidding strategy for a 3* in Downtown or Lake Union is the same, and your free rebid zones are the same. It's a little bit of a walk from Lake Union to the downtown core. I'd estimate 20 minutes. The trolley is a direct connection. The tradeoff for being at the fringe of Downtown is free parking/breakfast at the Silver Cloud or full suite plus breakfast at the Residence Inn.

You said your bidding limit is $90 but you've only bid to $75 Downtown. Do you want to try to $90 for a 3.5* or 3* Downtown? Or would you rather try winning a 3* in Lake Union to $75 before you bid higher Downtown?

--

p.s. I just noticed that Priceline has divided Downtown into two zones---Space Needle and Pike Place. This is great news. Space Needle only goes to 3*. I'd suggest you only bid in the Pike Place zone, not Space Needle. Most people would prefer a 3* in Lake Union over a 3* in Space Needle.

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Ok, so if I understand this, I should start a new bidding process every time I drop a level. So if I start at Downtown at 3*, I could add Lake Union (and maybe Space Needle), then Everett and N. Everett while increasing bids. If those are rejected, then I can exit and begin again to drop to 2.5. At this level I would add Downtown, Lake U, (SN) and Everett.

To answer your question, I'm not sure if trying for a $75 bid in Lake U. is preferable to a higher bid in DT. Any thoughts? If it's that close, then it sounds good to save the money.

Any suggestions on what amount to start bidding with this strategy? My limit is $90, but I'm more comfortable with a lower price, if possible. (I have a little cushion bc we have a backup reservation at the Inn at Queen Anne...we got a decent special there a couple of months ago, but if I can get a nicer place for less money...!)

Thanks so much!

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Looks like you have a good handle on things. (NOTING that you would only add Lake Union and/or Space Needle if you wanted to stay in either of the zones)

We'll start with a strategy for a 3* hotel... which zone(s) are you willing to accept and we'll advise accordingly.

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Ok, since we're stating with 3*...Downtown is first choice, and I'm fine with Lake Union and Space Needle, as well. (not sure if it makes a difference in your suggestions, but I won't be able to bid until I get home this evening)

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At the 3* level you have two re-bid zones available. If you're not familiar with re-bidding please read Priceline Re-Bidding Explained and feel free to ask questions and/or confirm your re-bid zones with the board before proceeding.

Start with the PRICELINE link on the board.

Select 3* Pike Place...

Bid $50, if rejected add re-bid zone...

Bid $55, if rejected add re-bid zone...

Bid $60, if rejected close browser and use our link to re-access PRICELINE

Select 3* Space Needle...

Bid $50, if rejected add re-bid zone...

Bid $55, if rejected add re-bid zone...

Bid $60, if rejected close browser and use our link to re-access PRICELINE

Select 3* Lake Union...

Bid $50, if rejected add re-bid zone...

Bid $55, if rejected add re-bid zone...

Bid $60, if rejected close browser and use our link to re-access PRICELINE

Select 3* Pike Place and Space Needle...

Bid $65, if rejected add re-bid zone...

Bid $70, if rejected add re-bid zone...

Bid $75, if rejected close browser and use our link to re-access PRICELINE

Select 3* Pike Place and Lake Union...

Bid $65, if rejected add re-bid zone...

Bid $70, if rejected add re-bid zone...

Bid $75, if rejected close browser and use our link to re-access PRICELINE

Select 3* Pike Place and Space Needle and Lake Union...

Bid $80, if rejected add re-bid zone...

Bid $85, if rejected add re-bid zone...

Bid $90

Any questions feel free to ask.

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Good luck and let us know how it goes.

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No luck, yet. :) I followed the strategy but stopped at $85...I hope that that didn't alter things too much. I want a 3*, but since I'm ok with 2.5, I decided that I would be more comfortable with going down a level instead of going up to $90. What would be the next step to try for a 3*? 2.5? Thank you guys so much! I feel like I'm learning a lot about this process - who knew?!

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Is a 2.5* in any of the downtown zones (Lake Union, Pike Place, or Space Needle) allright with you?

Is your bidding limit for a 2.5* also $85?

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Should my bidding limit be significantly different for a 2.5*? I think I would be fine with a 2.5* in any of the areas. Would I ned to raise my limit to try for a 3 again? That is still my ideal, but dropping a level is not a problem.

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Should my bidding limit be significantly different for a 2.5*?

Your bidding limit can be whatever you want it to be. I asked because it's common for people to have different bidding limits for different quality levels. They'll pay up to $100 for a 4* but only up to $75 for a 3*, for example.

2.5* hotels in Downtown Seattle don't always cost a lot less than 3* so I think $85 for a 2.5* is a reasonable limit, given that you've already been rejected to $85 for a 3*. Hopefully it won't take that much. If you get rejected to $85 for 2.5* I'll suggest that you try splitting your bid. Or if you prefer you could try splitting your bid now, and see if you can get three nights at a 3* for under $85.

We don't know yet what the 2.5* hotel in Priceline's Pike Place zone is. I suspect it's the Silver Cloud on Broadway. That hotel is on Capitol Hill, not really Downtown, but adjacent to it, maybe a mile away. I mention it because you said you won't have a car. Last I heard they have a free shuttle service from the hotel to Downtown but I haven't confirmed that recently. The Silver Cloud gets pretty good reviews but if a Capitol Hill location would be inconvenient for you then I'd suggest sticking to Lake Union and Space Needle zones for 2.5*.

Once you confirm your acceptable zones someone will suggest a strategy. I'll be away for the rest of the day.

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We'll suggest a strategy for whatever you'd like to do, but i'll "throw out there" (and these are just rough estimates) that you could get a 4* hotel in Downtown for ~$120-$140, a 3* at $100-$120... not too sure of a 2.5* but i'll guess $70-$95.

These aren't large price differences (imo) and for some the price difference would be worthwhile spending a little extra per nite... and more importantly, how much would you need to save to be outside of the downtown area in Lake Union?

I'm not sure how firm your budget is, but for me i would go a little higher for a 3* property OR, assuming my numbers above are close, keep my 2.5* bidding low enough that the savings would be worthwhile vs. what i though i could get a 3* for. In other words, if i though i could get a 3* for $110 (midpoint of range above), i wouldn't be bidding $90 for a 2.5* as the extra $20 would be worth it to me for the higher rated hotel... i would keep my bids low enough where if i won the savings would be substantial enough vs. trying a higher rated property.

Does that make sense? Your thoughts?

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Ok, I think that makes sense. If I'm going for a 2.5, keep the bid low enough so I'm actually saving money. The back-up reservation that we have is for the Inn at Queen Anne for $98 per night. I believe that PL rates this one as a 2*. (I know the ratings vary per site, but I'm just taking their standards into consideration.) So, my main goal is to get a nicer place for a little cheaper, if possible.

Basically, I think that if I need to go 100 bucks or more for a 3*, then a 2.5* works just fine.

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Do do you want to now try for a 3* up to $xx (what amount) or try for a 2.5*? If try for a 2.5* property what is your maximum bid at that level?

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Is there a way to reasonably bid for both levels at the same time? I know you cautioned me against dropping the level but increasing my bid. Is there a better strategy for that? My limit is 85 for either level, I believe.

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The star level you select is the minimum you're willing to accept, so when you bid for 2.5* you're also bidding for 3*.

The different though, is let's assume a 2.5* is available for $75 and a 3* is available for $80... if you only bid for 2.5* going up to your $85 limit, you'll win the 2.5* at $75, but if you had started trying for a 3* you would win the higher rated hotel for just $5 more.

Do you want to just bid for a 2.5* or better in either Pike Place, Space Needle, or Lake Union with an $85 limit?

Please use these PRICELINE and HOTWIRE links to begin your travel purchases.

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ok, got it. how about trying one more time for the 3*, then if that doesn't work, forget it and go for the 2.5 or better. Thanks so much for your patience with me...

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Changed my mind...I think I want to try for a 2.5 at this point at a slightly lower price. (Preferably no higher than the $75 -$80 range) I thought about it and realized that our reservation at the Inn at Queen Anne includes a kitchenette, so if I change hotels, we would probably have to add in the extra costs of meals. (Rather than having the option of grocery shopping and cooking full meals at the hotel.) I'll still consider going a little higher for the possibility of a 3, that seems worth it for the upgrade, but if I'm going to get a comparable hotel to what I already have (the Inn at QA is a 2* on PL, so a 2.5 should be the same, if not better), then I definitely want to save a good bit of money. Still looking at the same areas...

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When bidding for a 2.5* you have one rebid zone, Everett.

I suggest this:

Lake Union $50

Lake Union + Everett $55

close browser

Pike Place $50

Pike Place + Everett $55

close browser

Space Needle $50

Space Needle + Everett $55

close browser

LU + PP $60

LU + PP + Everett $65

close browser

LU + SN $60

LU + SN + Everett $65

close browser

LU + PP + SN $70

LU + PP + SN + Everett $75

Each time you close your browser please start your new bid with this PRICELINE link. Good luck!

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You said you wanted something in the $75-80 range and that strategy only went to $75. You could try $80/2.5* in 24 hours. (I actually missed a couple possible bidding permutations in the strategy I offered. You could have bid higher than $75 in one session with a slightly modified strategy. As things went though you'll have to wait 24 hours to try $80.)

Or you could split your bid, trying for three or four nights instead of five. Doing that will improve your chances of acceptance.

If you don't want to split your bid maybe you'll want to keep your backup at the Queen Anne for $98 with kitchenette. If that's a cancellable rate you can keep trying every couple days for a 3* or 2.5* on Priceline.

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Yes, I'm definitely hanging on to the backup reservation. I'll try PL tomorrow evening and see where $80 gets me for a 2.5. Should I employ the same strategy but just go a little higher? I really don't want to split the bids up...worst case scenario, I end up at the one i have now. You guys are great!

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