Priceline Review

Now that we've given you an introduction to Priceline, we'll give you a summary of what we thought were the most useful — and most frustrating — parts of using the website. Did it successfully persuade us that it was the real deal for online travel booking, or did its negotiations break down?

Let’s go over some of the pros and cons of Priceline so you can decide if it’s right for you.

Pros

  • No-nonsense basic booking – If you aren't looking for a total bargain and just want your travel accommodations booked the right way, Priceline will help you plan all the details from start to finish.  Whether you're looking for a flight, hotel, rental car, cruise, or an entire vacation package, it can help you sort it all out right in one spot. You can also usually change or cancel these types of bookings easily.
     
  • Haggle for a deal with "Name Your Own Price" – Want to show off your negotiating skills?  Their "Name Your Own Price" system allows you to pick some basic details about your accommodations, and then tell them what you want to pay for your booking. The software will then search for a company that will accept your price. You can usually get your accommodations at below-retail prices this way!
     
  • Get rewarded for your jet-setting – Sign up for an account or their email newsletter to earn "Bonus Cash" and coupon codes that you can use to lower the costs of your bookings even further!
     
  • Multiple customer service options – Need some extra help using Priceline?  Get in touch with them through live text chat, a convenient email form, or a good old-fashioned phone number.

Cons

  • Coupons have limited use – Discount coupon codes can only be used when you book hotels, and not when you book flights, car rentals, cruises, or vacations. In addition, they can only be used with the "Express Deals" and "Name Your Own Price" systems, and not for booking hotels through the regular channels.
     
  • Only the price is flexible – Bookings made through the "Name Your Own Price" system have some specific parts of your itinerary hidden from you and/or selected by Priceline or the company that they book you with. These types of bookings also cannot be changed or cancelled.
     
  • Get it right the first time – If the bid you submit for a "Name Your Own Price" booking is too low, you may have to change part of your itinerary if you want to immediately re-bid, or else restart the entire process from square one.

The bottom line: 8/10

Overall, Priceline.com is a pretty good website for booking travel accommodations online. Its basic booking functions are fairly reliable, flexible, and straightforward. Its standout feature, however, is its "Name Your Own Price" system. If you're willing to be a bit flexible with your travel plans (and maybe a bit patient, too), you can score pretty significant discounts whether you choose to book flights, hotels, or car rentals. The "Express Deals" system and their "Bonus Cash" and coupon codes can help lower your accommodation prices, too.

Though "Name Your Own Price" is Priceline's signature service, it's also the source of some of their biggest drawbacks. You can't control all aspects of your itinerary in this system (meaning that you have to leave some to Priceline or the company that they book you with), and your booking can't be changed or cancelled. You also have to research retail prices, or at least be patient (or both), when using "Name Your Own Price". If the price you bid isn't accepted, you may have to change your itinerary before you can bid again. Or, if you don't want to change your itinerary, you may have to start your booking again from scratch.

In short, Priceline gives you the flexibility to choose between being in full control of booking your travel accommodations (albeit at slightly higher prices), or leaving some aspects of your itinerary up to chance in a bid to save money with "Express Deals" or "Name Your Own Price". We'll show you how to use both of these booking methods in the next two sets of tutorials in this course, so stick with us!

 

 

We hope this review helped you decide whether or not Priceline is the right travel booking service for you. If you want to use it, check out the rest of our free Priceline course to learn how to book your next vacation.


Is Priceline Safe and Reliable?

Before you get started using Priceline for booking travel accommodations, you may have some questions about your security on the website. Is it safe to use my credit card on the website? How trustworthy are the companies that Priceline books me with? Does the company offer legitimate deals? How can I lower the uncertainty of using the “Name Your Own Price” system? This article will attempt to put your mind at ease by addressing each of these concerns, and offer you some tips on how to keep yourself safe while using Priceline.

Is Priceline reliable?

Priceline is fairly reliable when it comes to online travel booking. They’ve partnered with the well-known accommodation providers, so it’s not like you’ll be stuck with an unproven company when you book. The main reliability concern is the “Name Your Own Price” feature, which hides booking details.

When using the “Express Deals” or “Name Your Own Price” services, some of your booking details are hidden from you until your booking is complete, and/or selected by Priceline or the accommodations provider that you end up with. We’ll explain this more below, but if you are really worried about its reliability or any other travel accommodation booking website, then we suggest booking directly with the respective accommodations companies.

Is Priceline safe?

Priceline is very safe to use. They are a reputable company that works with only the most well-established accommodation providers in the travel industry. It is safe to book accommodations through them, and it is also safe to pay for your bookings with a credit card or a PayPal account.

Note, however, that using their “Express Deals” or “Name Your Own Price” systems can be a bit of a gamble. Some of your itinerary details are left to be filled in by Priceline or the company that accepts your booking, and these types of bookings cannot be changed or cancelled. The purpose of this is to get you the best deal possible, if you aren’t too concerned about what brands you book with. There are, however, ways to mitigate these risks, which we will outline below in our safety tips!

Is Priceline legit?

Priceline is a legitimate website for booking travel, and was established in 1997, so it is one of the oldest booking websites around! It is also a part of what is now known as The Priceline Group – a collection of some of the world’s best travel and booking websites.

Overall, Priceline is a great website, and here at TechBoomers, we’d definitely recommend it as a site where you can get reliable travel deals at prices better than you can find elsewhere. There are some things you need to consider, and in our safety tips below, we’ll outline them, and give you ways you can counter possible safety or reliability issues.

Top 5 safety tips for its “Name Your Own Price” booking

1. Book close to your departure date.

Since you can’t change or cancel “Name Your Own Price” bookings, try to book them fairly close to the date that you’re going to start your trip on (say, within two weeks at most). This helps to lessen the risk of getting stuck with a booking that you have to miss because you had a change of plans.

2. Do as much research as possible on comparative rates before booking.

Do your homework. Research the retail rates of airplane tickets, hotel bookings, or car rentals on either Priceline or its competitors (ex. Orbitz.com, Hotwire.com, and so on). This will help you make a bid that will save you money off retail price, but be reasonable enough to get you the type of accommodations that you want.

If you’re booking a hotel, you may want to use a mapping service like Google Maps to get information on hotels in the general area in which you wish to book. This may give you an idea of what you can expect when Priceline picks your particular hotel for you.

3. Contact companies directly and negotiate to get what you want.

Why stop at negotiating your booking price? When you find out the exact details of your booking, call the company that you end up getting booked with and talk to them about their ability to honour seat selections (for airlines), room availability (for hotels), and any other special requests that you make. You may also want to contact its support team about these things (and if you need to learn how to do so, see our article on how to contact Priceline customer service here).

4. Keep proof of your booking in a safe place, and take it with you when you travel.

Print out your itinerary, and take it with you when you go to check in for your accommodation. Your itinerary serves as proof that your booking has been confirmed, as well as of any special requests that you make. It can be a valuable piece of evidence in the unfortunate event that something goes wrong and a dispute arises.

5. Read reviews online of commonly-used Priceline affiliates.

Though you may have to book on Priceline without knowledge of who you’re booking with, you can find information online that tells you the other websites and services it often uses to book your travel with. Read reviews beforehand and make sure you are okay with the quality of service available from any of these sites before agreeing to book with them. That way you know you won’t be disappointed with the results of who you end up booking with.

 

And that’s our advice on how to maximize the safety and reliability of booking travel accommodations when using Priceline! If you’re thinking about using it to book travel, be sure to read our next article where we review its pros and cons to help you decide if it’s the right booking site for you.


What Priceline Is and How to Book Travel Online

Booking travel accommodations online has become a popular new alternative for people looking to plan a getaway. The main draw of doing so is the convenience: you can book your flights, hotels, rental cars, and so on right from the comfort of your own home, and often all on the same website! Plus, many booking websites offer rewards programs and other discounts, so you can take a vacation without breaking the bank! 

With Priceline.com, you can flexibly book travel amenities when you’re going away from home for a while. Or, if you think that you’re a good haggler, you can try out the “Name Your Own Price” function. Pick a few details about your trip, tell Priceline what you’re willing to pay for it, and then let it find you a company that’s willing to accept your offer. That’s the power of negotiation!

The one drawback is that it’s often more difficult to cancel your arrangements made through a booking website than it is if you book directly with the accommodations company itself, so make sure to plan extra carefully.

What is Priceline?

Priceline is a travel accommodation booking website that allows you to reserve flights, hotel rooms, and rental cars. Its “Name Your Own Price” system allows you to place bids on accommodations that have some of their details hidden from you. The details will be revealed if your bid is accepted.

How does Priceline work: It’s 5 main features 

1. Hassle-free bookings for all your accommodations, including flights, hotels, and car rentals.

Priceline makes it easy to be in control of your trip bookings from start to finish. You can reserve seats on an airplane flight, rooms at a hotel, rental cars, and even cruises or entire vacation packages!

Priceline booking page

2. Drive a hard bargain with “Name Your Own Price.”

Feel like taking a gamble in order to get a better deal? Try booking an accommodation through its “Name Your Own Price” function. You get to choose some of the essential details regarding your booking, and then tell Priceline what you want to pay for it. Based on your bid, it will try to match you with an airline, hotel, or car rental company willing to accept your price. If they succeed, they will fill in the rest of the details about your booking for you.

Name Your Price feature on Priceline

3. Alter or cancel bookings if you have a change of plans.

Usually, if you go through the regular channels for booking an accommodation on Priceline, then you can change or cancel your booking if something comes up. Simply enter your email address and itinerary number, and you should be able to change a few details about your accommodation, or at least cancel it outright. You can also try contacting Priceline customer service, or the company that you booked with through Priceline, and see if they can help.

Change details of a booking on Priceline

4. Sleep and save with coupons for hotel bookings.

Chances are that you’ll already be getting a bargain on your hotel room when you book through Priceline’s “Name Your Own Price” system. But you can also sign up for their email newsletter and get exclusive coupon codes to hammer down your costs even further! You may even be able to find some of these codes on virtual coupon websites!

Coupons for Priceline hotels

5. Get in touch with customer service through multiple channels.

Need some extra assistance with using Priceline? Head to their “Help” page and start a live text chat with one of their customer service representatives, or send their customer service department an email by using their convenient inquiry form. Or, you can just call their toll-free customer service phone number!

Ways to contact Priceline customer service

The history of Priceline

Priceline was founded in 1997 intending to help its users get the best travel deals on airline tickets and hotel rates. The company is best known for the “Name Your Own Price” system that allows people to bid on travel deals. Recently, Priceline introduced another way for travelers to save money with their “Express Deals” program.

Is Priceline safe to book travel on?

Priceline is definitely safe to use. It’s one of the oldest and most well-established online booking sites. They only partner with legitimate airlines, hotels, and rental car services, so you know you can count on your travel booking. You’re safe to pay for your bookings with your credit card or PayPal. The only thing about Priceline that may be questionable is if you book through their “Name Your Own Price” system, because you won’t know the specific hotel or airline until your booking is finalized. To learn more about how safe booking with the website is, check out our article on Priceline safety.

Priceline pros and cons

There are lots of reasons to book a vacation with Priceline, but there are also a few not-so-great things about booking on Priceline could make you go elsewhere. Let’s go over a few of the pros and cons of the service to give you an idea of whether or not it’s right for you.

A great feature is that it has multiple options and ways to book your vacation. You can use their basic booking system if you’re not looking for the best bargain, or try to get a deal with their “Name Your Own Price” system. They also occasionally have coupons to save money on hotel bookings, and their customer service representatives can be reached in multiple ways.

On the other hand, some cons are that when you use the “Name Your Own Price” system, you have to be patient waiting for the details of your booking. You won’t be told the airline or specific hotel until you’ve completed your booking, and during the booking process, if your bid is too low you may end up having to re-start the entire process.

Priceline competitors

Priceline is one of many online travel booking websites, so it’s not the only option if you’re looking to book your next vacation. If it isn’t quite right for you, you could check out some other great travel booking websites such as Orbitz.com and Expedia. If you’re looking for more affordable accommodations and are okay with not staying in a hotel, you could rent a space from a property owner through VRBO.com. If you’d like to find more information about an area you’re thinking about visiting, check out Tripadvisor to learn about the best restaurants and attractions in the area.

We have a whole list of the best websites like Priceline in this article if you’d like to learn more.

 

And that’s our rundown of Priceline! We have a few more informational articles in our Priceline course before we show you how to use the site. These include a review of Priceline, and some notes about its safety and reliability.