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Old 12-04-2008, 05:20 PM   #21
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We've used priceline six times and had great results on five of the six. The one loser was a well known chain motel poorly located ref the interstate exit. It was a long way and tough to find. When we got there, the parking lot was near empty and things were a bit shoddy...... Obviously, they chose the site poorly, had little business and things were detiorating. The staff was great, in uniform and very professional. They were just managing a location with close to zero volume and probably doomed to be closed.

The other five experiences were fantastic! It's fun to stay at three star properties and pay budget chain rates while on the road! Last spring we were in Madison, Wis at a canoeing/kayaking show. We stayed at a downtown three star hotel in an upper floor room overlooking the attractive, domed state capital building. Nice view. Nice room. Nice hotel with great amenities. Friends who met us in Madison paid more to stay at a Red Roof Inn out on the interstate!

Not knowing which "brand" you'll get makes it interesting and I keep the surprises to a minimum by going no lower than 2.5 stars.
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Old 12-05-2008, 03:24 AM   #22
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I almost always use Priceline for booking rental cars, cause it saves money, and who really cars that much between Thrifty, Avis, Hertz, Enterprise etc.

A couple of times for hotels, it was ok but nothing too earthshattering.

On the other hand, I find it somewhat risky to use it for booking airline flights. You run the risk of being locked into some horrible flight schedule, inflexible travel arrangements, and for me the kicker is no frequent flyer miles which for me balances out the cost savings.

On the other hand if was very confident of my schedule, either way in the future or you need to catch a flight in the next day or two... you can save money with priceline.

I am curious has anybody else being finding the best deal on flights is use Orbitz etc for finding the flights and then booking directly with the airlines, or is there a new cheap airfare travel site which is consistently a good source of bargains?
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Old 12-05-2008, 08:36 AM   #23
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I've never used Priceline for flights . I usually go to kayak to find the best airline deals and then go to the airline web site and book . Interestingly some of the best deals I've gotten were flying out of one airport and returning to a different one . I recently flew Air Tran and I have to say I was impressed at how efficient they were . I will definitely consider then again.
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Old 12-05-2008, 12:32 PM   #24
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I almost always use Priceline for booking rental cars, cause it saves money, and who really cars that much between Thrifty, Avis, Hertz, Enterprise etc.

A couple of times for hotels, it was ok but nothing too earthshattering.

On the other hand, I find it somewhat risky to use it for booking airline flights. You run the risk of being locked into some horrible flight schedule, inflexible travel arrangements, and for me the kicker is no frequent flyer miles which for me balances out the cost savings.

On the other hand if was very confident of my schedule, either way in the future or you need to catch a flight in the next day or two... you can save money with priceline.

I am curious has anybody else being finding the best deal on flights is use Orbitz etc for finding the flights and then booking directly with the airlines, or is there a new cheap airfare travel site which is consistently a good source of bargains?

The best deals I get for flights is searching on expedia or orbitz. Then book directly through the airline. Since all those sites basically take the flight the airline offers and slap a fee on it. Im particular about how I fly. I do not enjoy long layovers or multiple stops
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Old 12-05-2008, 02:57 PM   #25
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The best deals I get for flights is searching on expedia or orbitz. Then book directly through the airline. Since all those sites basically take the flight the airline offers and slap a fee on it. Im particular about how I fly. I do not enjoy long layovers or multiple stops
I hate long layovers also. I notice that often booking directly with an airline in addition to saving the Orbitz fee also nets you some additional frequently flyer mile or an e-coupon.
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Old 12-05-2008, 05:23 PM   #26
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I have used Priceline for a rental car for myself in San Diego and helped my friend use it for a car in Hawaii. Worked great for both of us.
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Old 12-07-2008, 03:09 PM   #27
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I haven't used Priceline to book any of our cruises. I generally look for a good price on the Vacations to Go site Discount Cruises, Last Minute Cruises, Cruise, Cruise Line, Cruise Vacation and book thru American Express travel. I've done this for five cruises over the years, and have always gotten the cheaper price thru AmEx -- sometimes have to threaten to go elsewhere, but they make it work! Why do I use AmEx? Three reasons: 1. I like having a travel agent for back up in case of a problem on the cruise; 2. AmEx always manages to include something extra -- a cruise ship on board credit, discount on a tour, etc; and 3. We usually use AmEx points for a portion of the cost of the cruise or the airfare.
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Old 12-11-2008, 06:18 PM   #28
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I love Priceline and use it all the time for hotels and cars, but never for flights because of the uncertainty of the flight schedule that you will get. Just last week we got a Marriott Renaissance Sport hotel in Aliso Viejo (Orange County CA) for Xmas week at $60/night.

In mid-size and larger cities, we usually get rates of $35 - $60/night at national chain hotels like Red Lion, Hilton, etc. especially if we are trying to get a room on the weekend. (Business hotels are usually much more available on the weekends). Our best scores have been in London where we've always been able to get rooms in typical tourist class highrise hotels for $100/night + tax in Kensington near Hyde Park and the Natural History Museum.

For cruises, I think it would work as long as you aren't picky about your exact route or the cruise line. If you have a specific route or cruise company in mind, you won't want to take a chance on getting something different. Also, the key to the Priceline "name your own price" option is to do your research beforehand so that you know what is available as a "normal" good deal, then bid at least 30-40% below that and see what happens.
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Old 12-12-2008, 10:23 AM   #29
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I love Priceline and use it all the time for hotels and cars, but never for flights because of the uncertainty of the flight schedule that you will get. Just last week we got a Marriott Renaissance Sport hotel in Aliso Viejo (Orange County CA) for Xmas week at $60/night.

In mid-size and larger cities, we usually get rates of $35 - $60/night at national chain hotels like Red Lion, Hilton, etc. especially if we are trying to get a room on the weekend. (Business hotels are usually much more available on the weekends). Our best scores have been in London where we've always been able to get rooms in typical tourist class highrise hotels for $100/night + tax in Kensington near Hyde Park and the Natural History Museum.

For cruises, I think it would work as long as you aren't picky about your exact route or the cruise line. If you have a specific route or cruise company in mind, you won't want to take a chance on getting something different. Also, the key to the Priceline "name your own price" option is to do your research beforehand so that you know what is available as a "normal" good deal, then bid at least 30-40% below that and see what happens.
Do you still get a good room with a decent view or do they tend to stick you in a bad spot in the back somewhere?

Do you still get to request a non smoking room with King Bed and that sort of thing?
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Old 12-12-2008, 11:07 AM   #30
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Do you still get a good room with a decent view or do they tend to stick you in a bad spot in the back somewhere?

Do you still get to request a non smoking room with King Bed and that sort of thing?
I've only gotten a terrible room view once - in Las Vegas. The view was of a huge roof top air conditioner. Generally the rooms seem just fine. I've never gotten stuck in a smoking room. Usually the bed type and arrangement is defined ahead of time.
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Old 12-14-2008, 02:34 AM   #31
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Interestingly enough, I was able to just get a rental car from Avis through Fatwallet for a cheaper price than Priceline. It still pays to shop around.
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Old 12-14-2008, 09:42 AM   #32
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Do you still get a good room with a decent view or do they tend to stick you in a bad spot in the back somewhere?

Do you still get to request a non smoking room with King Bed and that sort of thing?

They have always honored my requests for non smoking .Most times I've gotten good views but if a view such as oceanfront was really important to me I would be hesitant to use priceline .
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Old 12-14-2008, 03:24 PM   #33
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The best deals seem to be rental cars, where you can often get one for $15/day or so. I use it for hotels too, especially in big cities where you can often get a room for $50-80 that would cost twice as much otherwise.

I've never felt comfortable with the restrictions on flights, so I never use it for air.
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Old 12-14-2008, 06:43 PM   #34
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The best deals seem to be rental cars, where you can often get one for $15/day or so. I use it for hotels too, especially in big cities where you can often get a room for $50-80 that would cost twice as much otherwise.

I've never felt comfortable with the restrictions on flights, so I never use it for air.
Several folks have remarked on their concerns about Priceline for air travel. I only used it once for air travel -- when looking to take my family of four to England a few years ago. I live in the DC area, and the best I could do through the travel agent and various websites was about $750 a ticket. So I ran Priceline and got four tickets at $580 apiece. That was a real nice savings. Yeah, we connected through Chicago, adding about two hours each way -- but the flights were good, and it was worth the savings. But I think the only time I would use it for air travel would be when I could amplify the savings (i.e., for very expensive, multiple tix).
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Old 12-15-2008, 08:05 AM   #35
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For rental cars i always check the southwest airlines booking - it works for non southwest cities as well. Painless booking and cancels plus the site takes coupons/promotions.
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Old 02-25-2009, 01:21 PM   #36
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i generally don't use priceline. i have used it however i believe twice and had very good results both of those times.
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Old 02-25-2009, 01:44 PM   #37
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Since this thread was started, Ive used Priceline several times.

1. Got a room at the Doubletree in Dallas for $50 (rate on their website was $109)
2. Got a room in New Orleans for $67. Rate was $158
3. Currently booking rooms for a spring break trip with my wife and son. So far I have 3 nights at Residence Inn in Santa Fe for $57 each (rate was $119). One night in Albuquerque at the Doubletree for $60 (rate was $109). One night in Amarillo at Drury Inn for $49 (reg rate $85).

My experience so far has been great.
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