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Old 10-15-2012, 07:47 PM   #21
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Oh gee...i know where that LaQuinta is near Little Rock....not good news at all.

I already bragged about this, lol, but we have gotten some very good deals via PL. Worst deal we got was recently in Dothan, AL where i bid 2*. I still don't understand why i bid 2*...unless it was Bud Lite's fault?

Growing up, we rarely took trips. When we did, my dad would always request ground floor and check out the room before paying. My mom had (has) serious back pain and he would make certain bed was firm enough. This was usually done about 11PM when he would finally be willing to call it a day of driving. DH and i are usually ready to stop after 9 or 10 hours, tops.

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Old 10-15-2012, 08:25 PM   #22
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Originally Posted by ohyes View Post
Oh gee...i know where that LaQuinta is near Little Rock....not good news at all.
No, it wasn't good news.......

When we pulled up, after an almost forever drive from the interstate, it was obvious something was wrong. The landscaping was not maintained and the attached restaurant was not operating. There were only a few cars in the parking lot. I walked into the lobby and it didn't seem too bad but when we went to the room, in an arm of the motel quite a distance from the office, it was like we had been sent to a ghost town. Hee.... hee.... I knew this had to happen sometime.

Despite being surprised by the abandoned, empty nature of our surroundings, we unlocked the door and went into the room. Id give it a C- at best. It wasn't dirty, but lots of things were broken and patched, marred, damaged, etc. And we didn't feel comfortable with how empty that wing of the motel was. We decided we'd walk, despite having prepaid the room on PL. But then I got another idea and went back to the lobby and asked for another room close to the lobby where other rooms were occupied and a number of cars were parked. They accomodated me and that room was an improvement. And we felt better that the adjacent rooms were occupied and we were near the office/lobby.

I'm surprised LaQuinta was still operating the place. We'd stayed at a LaQuinta before and it seemed OK. Now, I'll always think of that one when I see the LaQuinta sign.

As mentioned, my other experiences using Priceline's bid system have all been positive.

"I wasn't born blue blood. I was born blue-collar." John Wort Hannam
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Old 10-15-2012, 08:37 PM   #23
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We just got back from a trip and used the coupon -- on a hotel we've visited before. This is the best of both worlds. You know where you are going, and you get a fantastic deal.

I'm not comfortable with using bid sites that don't commit me to a place.

And the coupons can lead you to some real stinkers too. I swear that some places reserve the "cr*p rooms" for the coupons.

Last night was a happy exception to all of it.
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Old 10-16-2012, 11:22 AM   #24
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Originally Posted by imoldernu View Post
...That's our "take" on motel prices... Would be interested in hearing from others.
We use TripAdvisor most of the time. I usually stay in the top 10% so far I have not been disappointed.
Used VRBO once this past Sept. - was a great price but had to pay 7 months ahead of time, did not like that but the person had so many good reviews and it did work out and we did have trip insurance.

Used priceline once- did not like the hotel at all.

Used Airbnb for the first time for Florida April 2013. Paid 7 months ahead of time. Got a great price for a house.
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Old 10-16-2012, 11:43 AM   #25
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Hotel prices are up this year, this is a fact. And, hotels are starting to play the same game as the airlines: The best price is non-refundable, etc.

Keep your powder dry for an economic downturn and the deals should come back.
The worst decisions are usually made in times of anger and impatience.
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Old 10-16-2012, 11:48 AM   #26
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Prepay? Not me. Truthfully, I have occasionally prepaid for reservations in national park lodges or on the beach very close to the water.

When I make reservations online, I always check the cancellation policy. Most Motel-By-The-Road locations offer cancellation up to check-in time. Most of these places also offer prepaid non-refundable discounts, which I don't take.

Also, I don't buy green bananas.
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Old 10-16-2012, 11:51 AM   #27
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About bad rooms...
No matter where, my bride always asks as we sign in, "I'd like to see the room... is that ok?"
Now whether that changes the desk person's selection or not, we really have not been disappointed.

One of the things we look for, on the coupons, is "new" or "remodeled" or "award winning" ...

Back to the coupons for a minute... Almost always, the coupon price is lower than any of the online prices, despite the claims of having the lowest price "or else"... As far as I can see, the difference is "reservations"....
Since we only travel on the Illinois to Florida route, it's all thruway, and there are hundreds of motels along the way. Except for one time out of hundreds, we have never had a problem with getting a room... If one motel is filled, the next one will have rooms.

Also... on more point that may have gone by the wayside... the "GREEN book" or the "REDbook"... are usually the lowest prices across the board... Last year, on our trip back from FL, we stopped at the Tennessee Welcome Center. There were some folks there, who had found a coupon for the same motel we ended up stopping at. They had made reservations with the welcome center, using a different coupon book. As we checked in (behind them), we heard the clerk give them the rate of $69.00... When we checked in with our Greenbook coupon (with no reservations of course)...
our rate was $54.95.

This is an interesting game...

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