Bidding Strategy For Getting Best Discounted Hotel Rates From Priceline Seattle

Priceline SeattleWe have had so many requests for Priceline bidding strategies for other cities from our readers that we are creating a post dedicated to successful wins for those cities. This post is dedicated to our biddings in Seattle, Washington.

We do a lot of cross border shopping and go down to Seattle about once a month.  We usually stay 2 nights in either Seattle or Bellevue, in order to get the maximum tax exemption (was $400, but as of June 1, 2012 it has increased to $800). So, we often use Priceline to get discounted hotel rates, and have successfully saved up to 45% off hotel retail rates. We have stayed at many 3.5 to 4 stars hotels in Seattle or Bellevue such as Sheraton Bellevue, Hilton Bellevue, Hyatt Bellevue, Grand Hyatt Seattle, Red Lion Downtown, and Vintage Park – A Kimpton Hotel.

This post is broken down into 3 parts

(1)   Part 1. Priceline Instructions. For new Priceline users, we have provided step by step instructions for getting discounted hotel rates from Priceline Seattle.

(2)   Part 2. Priceline rebidding strategy

(3)   Part 3. Priceline Seattle hotels winning bids

Part 1.  Step by step instructions for getting discounted hotel rates from Priceline for Seattle Washington.

(1) Determine hotel area (neighbourhood) and star level for your travel dates

For example: You are visiting Seattle, Washington from Sunday Dec 23rd to 29th, 2012 and would like to stay in a 4 star hotel in Downtown Seattle Area – Pike Place

Priceline Seattle Hotel Areas

(2) Visit Hotwire.com to see what price the competitor is offering when using the same travel criteria.  This will help determine your maximum bid limit.

Click here to check for Hotwire Price!

At the time of writing, Hotwire is offering a 4.5 Star and 4 Star Hotel Downtown – Pike Place Area with rate of $166 and $86 per room per night respectively.  Therefore, if you choose to bid with Priceline, you should set your upper limit as $86 for a 4 Star Hotel Downtown – Pike Place.

(3) Visit Priceline.comto check out regular hotel rates based on the same travel criteria

So from the above example:

(1)   Enter your travel itinerary and select “search hotels now!”
(2)   Select Hotel Area as “Seattle Downtown”
(3)   Select Star Rating as “4 Star”
(4)   Select “Update Hotel”
(5)   You can sort the results by “Most Popular”, “Lowest Price”, “Hotel Name” etc..  Select “Lowest Price”
At the time of writing, the lowest price is Vintage Park, A Kimpton Hotel $104 per room per night and the highest is Sorrento Hotel $168 per room per night.  Our favourite Priceline Downtown Seattle Hotel – Grand Hyatt Seattle is $152 per room per night.
6)   If any specific hotel and price appeals to you, then you can book it directly from Priceline.

Priceline Seattle Main Page

Priceline Seattle - List of Hotels and their Retail Rates

If you are not set on staying at a specific hotel, then you can try “name your own price” by bidding on Priceline.  The Hotel Name is only revealed when the hotel affiliate from Priceline accepts your winning bid.

(4) Bid on Priceline.com by using “Name Your Own Price”

Step 1:   Select “Name Your Own Price” – Save up to 60% Off In Seattle”
Step 2:   I usually start at 50% of the median rate from Priceline and increase by  increments of $3 to $5 depending how close my travel date is (eg: $2 if I have more time to bid, or $5 if my travel date is near and I need a hotel very soon).

So from the example above:

Step 1: Choose where you want to stay: select “Seattle Downtown – Pike Place”
Step 2: Choose the star level for your hotel: select “4 Star-Deluxe”
Step 3: Name Your Own Price (per room night) –
-You will get the Median Retail
From the example, the Median Price is $148 for 4 Star Seattle Downtown-Pike Place Hotel.  Therefore, the starting bid is $74 (50% from median rate)
Step 4: Enter Reservation Name
Step 5: Select Preview Offer

Priceline Seattle - Star Level and Median Retail PricePriceline Seattle  - Seattle Areas

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Step 3.  You will be taken to Preview Your Request Screen that includes your travel itinerary and bid price per night and total charges after taxes and fees.

Step 4.  Decide if you need Trip Protection

Step 5. Read Important Information, Terms and Conditions and Privacy Policy.  Then enter your Initials and select “Continue”

If your bid fails, you may rebid by revising the following travel criteria:
(1) add another area or,
(2) downgrade your star level or,
(3) change check-in or check-out date or,
(4) wait 24 hours to rebid

Part 2. Priceline Rebidding strategy for Seattle Downtown – Pike Place without changing travel criteria or waiting 24 hours

So what if you want to keep all the same travel criteria and re-bid again within 24 hours?

Here is my re-bidding strategy, which has worked when we’ve traveled to Oahu, Maui, Kauai, Bellevue, Seattle, Miami, San Francisco, New York, Montreal, Toronto, Portland and Paris (it has worked every time for us since 2004). Here is what you do:

(1) If you have another travel companion, you can have him or her bid on their own account or
(2) Determine the area(s) that do not have the same or higher star level rating and use that as an area to add for rebid

How to determine which area you can use as rebid for 4 star level hotel?

Step 1: At Priceline, select “Hotel” tab
Step 2: Select “for deeper discount-name your own price”
Step 3: Enter travel information such as city, check-in and out dates, and number of rooms – click on bid now
Step 4: Select only one area on the list
Step 5: Scroll down to see the star level offered in the area – the ones that are greyed out indicate that these star levels are not available in the selected area.

priceline seattle - Rebidding Strategy priceline seattle - Rebidding Strategy 2

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Step 6: Create a list of area that does not have any hotels with 4 star levels or higher. This will be your list to “add an area” for rebid.
Step 7: Repeat 4 and 5 for each area.

***Important: you need to do this for each bidding session to ensure that Priceline did not recently add any new hotels to areas with same or higher star rating
***Important: Caution note: Priceline can upgrade you to a higher star level – example: if the neighbourhood has both 3.5 and 4 star level hotels and you bid for 3.5 star, Priceline can upgrade you to a 4 star hotel if your bid is accepted.
***Disclaimer: Please be aware that Priceline does not issue cancellations nor refunds!

At the time of writing this:

Bothell – 3 Stars or lower
Des Moines – 1 Star only
Kent – 3 Stars or lower
Kirkland – 3 Stars or lower
Lake Union – 3 Stars or lower
Lynnwood – 3 Stars or lower
Mukilteo-South Everett – 3 Stars or lower
Newcastle – 2 Stars or lower
North Everett – 3 Stars or lower
Seattle Airport (SEA) – 3.5 Stars or lower
Seattle North – Edmonds – Mountlake Terrace – 2.5 Stars or lower
Tukwila – Renton – 3 Stars or lower
Univ of Washington – Northgate – 3.5 Stars or lower
Therefore, you will have extra 13 rebids when bidding for a 4 star rating hotel.

So from the example:

You can increase your bid by $2 to $76 when you add Bothell,
if fail then add Des Moines and rebid at $78,
if fail then add Kent and rebid at $80,
if fail then add Kirkland and rebid at $82,
if fail then add Lake Union and rebid at $84.
If all bids fail then wait 24 hours and repeat the above steps. But, if bids get close to Hotwire’s price, then it may be better to just go with Hotwire’s or wait other day.  In our case, the Hotwire’s price is $84.

Below are screen shots of some of my recent Seattle winning bids using my above strategy!!!

Priceline Seattle Winning Bid Grand Hyatt
Priceline Seattle Winning Bid Vintage Park

Happy bidding!  I always get euphoric when I win a bid and see how much I save!

When you get your hotel information: you can contact the hotel for certain requests, such as bed size (king or queen instead of double bed, smoking or non-smoking room, etc).  Note: these requests may not be granted but it does not hurt to ask.

If you find this post useful, please use this link to see how much you can save by bidding on Priceline.com for your Seattle hotel booking!

Part 3. Priceline Seattle Hotels Recent Winning Bids

Priceline Seattle Hotel Winning Bids

From the above screen shot, a recent Priceline bidder had won a hotel bid at $85 for 4 Star Hotel at Seattle Downtown – Pike Place.  Therefore, from this example, the starting bid should be set at lower than $85.

Click here for recent winning hotel bids for Priceline Seattle!

If at any time you need any assistance with bidding for a hotel in Vancouver or any other city using Priceline, please feel free to contact us!