ED Magedson – Founder
PriceLine Priceline Guarantee not worth the paper it isn't written on Internet
I needed to have surgery at MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston. My wife is disabled and rather than her trying to drive for hours both before and after my surgery we decided that we would book 2 nights at a hotel. Nobody in our families had ever used Priceline, but it came up in our search for hotels near the center, so we took a look. Priceline offered a "Name Your Own Price" option. (This term is misleading as it gives you a price and a correlating star rating for the hotel grouping.) We ended up booking the 2 nights that way. That was supposed to offer breakfast (for my wife, I couldn't eat before surgery). At the last minute my father decided to fly into town and he booked a room at the same hotel directly through their website.
We arrived before my father and checked in. The room we were given was on the first floor and it smelled REALLY bad and we had to remove 2 housekeeping carts from the room and a vacuum from the shower. When we were leaving to pick my father up at the airport we noticed a housekeeper going into the room dispite the do not disturb tag in the door, but we figured we would deal with that when we got back and had time to determine if anything was missing. (Nothing was, it was just a very confused maid who couldn't figure out why the carts had been moved and why we were in the room. The carts remained just outside that room the whole time we were there.) When we got back we found out that they had mistakenly checked us into my dad's room. The front desk then told us we didn't have a reservation! Priceline requires prepayment on these types of reservations, so the room had been paid for over a week. We called Priceline and was told that the hotel had confirmed, so we had a room, but the desk told us they were over booked and they only had a single room left and they were not supposed to let it go to Priceline. We could, however, book it and pay for it. We called Priceline back. My wife stayed on the phone with them and I went up to the front desk. The Priceline agent yelled at the desk clerk and was rude, I could hear him. She even said that she owuld rather lose her job and starve than allow him to treat her as badly as he was doing. She said fax her something and she would honor it. 2 faxes were sent, both said something different and did not have the details the system needed to honor the reservation. Over 2 hours later nothing was resolved and both my wife and I were tired, not feeling well and were nowhere closer to having a room. Thankfully my elderly father did have a room and could rest, as well as one could with the smells.
Fianlly, the desk clerk realized it wasn't our fault and offered to go ahead and use our credit card to secure the room and let management deal with the issue the following day. We weren't sure if we had both nights, just the one night or what was going to happen. Priceline said that they had "resolved the issue" because of this. it had nothing to do with them, it was the clerk sticking her neck out and ours for giving the credit card number and signing that we would pay if Priceline failed to do so. Hours had gone by and we missed dinner because of the issue. We had checked in at 3 and tried to checkin at 5 and it was now after 9pm, so we had to make do with late night fast food. Since the "breakfast" consisted of a couple of ugly apples, nobody got breakfast either and when my surgery took much longer than anticipated it was another dinner missed and this time everyone was to tired to try to go miles to find any fast food.
My wife spent the next day with more than the normal amount of anxiety not knowing if we had a room for the night, if our stuff would be thrown out, if we had to pay twice for something, We still don't know if we will be charged for the room or if Priceline has paid what they collected from us weeks ago. This whole thing has been a nightmare and Priceline says they did nothing wrong. Nothing can fix what happened to us, the stress takes a toll on my wife and increases her pain level and nothing can even begin to make up for that and for the stress it added to an already stressful situation.
This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 09/20/2013 06:47 AM and is a permanent record located here: http://www.ripoffreport.com/reports/priceline/internet/priceline-priceline-guarantee-not-worth-the-paper-it-isnt-written-on-internet-1085978. The posting time indicated is Arizona local time. Arizona does not observe daylight savings so the post time may be Mountain or Pacific depending on the time of year.
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