Bidding online for hotel rooms was a concept I hadn’t tried, until a few girlfriends and I went to Vegas earlier this month. Our trip was a throw-together fiasco for my birthday and we decided to play things by ear. Of course, we drove down the Vegas strip that Friday, not knowing where we would stay, and anxious to get settled. Our three smartphones nearly over heated we had so many google windows going searching for a room. We were exhausted from the four hour drive from Phoenix and we all badly ached for a shower. Desperate and not finding a hotel room for under $300/night, we went to Priceline.com. On their website, you can bid for hotels based on rating (1-5 star hotels), price range, and location. We wanted to be close to the strip, wanted at least a 3-star hotel (but couldn’t afford a 5-star) and we needed to check-in asap. Eventually, after some finagling, we scored a room for two nights at the Candlewood Suites, right behind the Flamingo. We paid $80 per person for both nights. Not bad.
How it Works: You click your rating (3-star hotel), location (near Las Vegas Blvd.) duration of stay (two nights) and enter your bid i.e. how much you’re willing to pay ($50/night is a good starting bid). Then Priceline finds a hotel who accepts your bid, you pay, and get the confirmation reservation.
The only downsides? Priceline’s app for Blackberry is slow and tough to navigate. And when you book, you can’t see the name of the hotel until after your credit card goes through.