Post # 1
I’m talking about those hotel and travel websites that say “here is your price, it’s a really good discount, but you won’t know the name of your hotel until a week before you travel.” Often you can specify things you want like how many stars the hotel has, to ensure you won’t end up with a dump. Or in the specific thing I am looking at, they actually list the 4 hotels that it COULD be, so you can look at them all to be sure you would be willing to stay at any one of them.
Things like that are certainly tempting, because the prices are so good, but it still really makes me nervous.
Would you do it?
Have you done it? Did it work out ok? Tell me your stories if you have done such things!
Post # 2
If you do your research, you can get very good deals. Darling Husband and I did this when he was interviewing and we’d have a week’s notice to fly out to some city we’d never been before.
What’s worked for us is pulling up both hotels.com and hotwire.com at the same time. Narrow down hotwire til you find something good, and take a close look at what the “original” price is, where (approximately) the hotel is located, number of stars, guest rating, etc. Then, go to hotels.com, do a location search looking in the location of your hotwire hotel, and you should find one that matches the hotwire original price within a few dollars, same guest rating, number of stars, etc. We’ve been able to guess within one or two hotels which one we’d get, so it wasn’t really a big risk.
So, would I go blindly onto hotwire? No haha. But if you can figure out what place it’s giving you, it works really well.
Post # 3
We did it, but I knew exactly which hotel it would be, as it said “here the four hotels it COULD be”, and only one of those chains had a hotel in that area, lol.
If you’d be willing to stay at any of the four, and it’s a good savings I don’t see why not…
For me it would also depend ont he occasion, Ours was that we needed a place to crash downtown on NYE, and weren’t too fussed on where it would be, and it was a 4 star, so we were ok with that. I probably wouldn’t risk it for, say, my honeymoon, or a weeklong vacay.
Post # 4
If it was a trip that wasn’t super special yes I would. We did a trip to Cancun and I picked our trip based on price and it worked out, but honestly for the price I would have been happy either way.
If it was a honeymoon or other occasion no I wouldn’t since I would be upset if it wasn’t up to my expectations.
Post # 5
- Wedding: November 2012 - Oak Tree Manor
I’ve done it once, and it worked out great.
Back when we were dating, Darling Husband and I planned a trip to New York for New Year’s. We booked a private room in a youth hostel to save money. But when we checked in at the hostel, they had messed up our reservation, and they only had one night reserved for us! That left us scrambling to find last-minute accomodations in NY, for New Year’s – which is a nightmare.
I used Expedia or Priceline (sorry, I can’t remember which one!) to do a name-your-own-price deal, where we offered $150/night on hotels that were 3 stars and higher. We ended up with a room overlooking Central Park in a great neighborhood, and it was one of my favorite hotels we’ve ever stayed at.
I mean… I personally think that if you select a high-enough level of hotel (3 or 4 stars minimum) your experience can’t be *that* bad. You can also check out the amenities and compare them to amenities of hotels in the area, to narrow down which hotels the “surprise hotel” could be.
Post # 6
We have done that several times. If you know you are getting a 4 star hotel in the are you want to stay, what’s the risk?
There are websites that can help with bidding on Priceline too.
Post # 7
My brother and his wife did this for their honeymoon, and their room had no window, lol.
If it’s a really nice vacation, I personally wouldn’t do it. If it’s like…staying a weekend somewhere and you’re barely going to use the room, then go for it. That’s how I feel about it anyway.