(Plankton 4:20)

Priceline Announces It’s Buying OpenTable For $2.6 Billion

Travel booking site Priceline seems to be hungry, and it it seems it’s found exactly what it wants to nosh on — restaurant reservation site OpenTable, which books tables for users in their cities. Priceline is forking over $2.6 billion in cold, hard cash to buy the company. [More]

Court Throws Out Online Price-Fixing Lawsuit Against Major Hotel Chains, Booking Sites

Court Throws Out Online Price-Fixing Lawsuit Against Major Hotel Chains, Booking Sites

For years, some have accused America’s largest hotel chains of colluding with travel booking sites like Travelocity, Expedia, Orbitz, and Priceline to make sure that the room rates offered to consumers on these sites are the same. This practice, claimed plaintiffs in various lawsuits, effectively allowed the hotel chains to determine their own prices and kept the booking sites from competing against each other; meaning consumers could be paying more than they should. But a U.S. District Court judge feels differently. [More]

Priceline Slams Customers With Hundreds Of Duplicate E-Mails

One reader's inbox. She says that when you click on Unsubscribe, someone else's name shows up.

UPDATE: Priceline has released a statement regarding this afternoon’s e-mail oopsy. [More]

(Great Beyond)

Priceline Books Me In 3.5 Star Roach Motel, And There’s No Refunds

The problem with Priceline’s “Name Your Own Price” feature is that you don’t get to name your own hotel. That’s the point, of course. When Chris used it to book a 3.5 star hotel for his vacation, though, he looked up reviews for the place and saw that other customers’ experiences ranged from “no heat” to “dog poop in the closet” to “bedbugs.” That was not promising. So he tried to cancel, only to learn that Priceline has a strict policy against that. No matter how terrible the hotel you end up with might be. [More]

If you have to pay for nice reviews, you don't deserve them.

Hotel Claims Overzealous Employee Posted Sign Offering To Pay For Nice Online Reviews

Earlier today, we told you about the Texas hotel that offered guests up to $5 if they posted positive reviews on any number of popular travel sites. A rep for the hotel has since responded to say that this was a case of an overzealous employee acting on their own. [More]

If you have to pay for nice reviews, you don't deserve them.

Dallas Hotel Blatantly Offers To Pay Guests For Positive Online Reviews

UPDATE: A rep for the hotel confirms to Consumerist that the sign — since taken down — was posted by an employee who got overly creative in their attempt to boost the hotel’s social media profile.

——-
Here’s a tip to hotel managers around the world — Paying for reviews is bad enough. Advertising that you’re willing to pay for positive feedback is only going to communicate to your guests that you run a bad hotel and that you expect them to not have anything nice to say about your establishment. [More]

(birdarts)

Priceline Convinces Kayak To Elope By Paying It $1.8 Billion In Cash & Stock

Who knew these two crazy kids would end up together? Travel site Priceline announced it’s going to pay its fellow travel search company Kayak $1.8 billion in both stock and cash. With this kind of speedy relationship, it makes you wonder if anyone bothered with a pre-nup.  [More]

(efkjr79)

Expedia Books Me Into 4 Hotels I Can’t Stay In

Like many New Yorkers in low-lying areas, Consumerist reader Jacob’s home was evacuated. Without a place to stay, he used his phone to book a room at a Manhattan hotel. Little did he know that he wouldn’t be staying at that hotel, or the one after that, or the one after that. [More]

(afagen)

Making A Booking Mistake On Priceline.com Not As Disastrous As I Expected

Is booking your travel through third-party sites always a complicated nightmare that precludes refunds and makes your life difficult? No! Not always. Sometimes it saves you money and isn’t the headache you imagine it to be. Tony learned that the making an error on Priceline wasn’t as bad as it could have been. [More]

Lawsuit Alleges Price-Fixing By Major Hotel Chains And Online Booking Sites

Lawsuit Alleges Price-Fixing By Major Hotel Chains And Online Booking Sites

A class-action lawsuit filed yesterday in a U.S. District Court in California alleges that the biggest names in online travel — Priceline, Expedia, Travelocity, Orbitz, Hotels.com — and some of the world’s largest hotel chains — Hilton, Starwood, Marriott, Intercontinental, among others — conspired together so that the “best price guarantee” you often see when booking a room online is in actuality just a number set by the hotel operators. [More]

I Would Like To Name My Own Price & Not Get Trip Insurance Automatically, Priceline

I Would Like To Name My Own Price & Not Get Trip Insurance Automatically, Priceline

Alli says she’s stumbled upon something she thinks is new on Priceline — when she named her own price for a , $25 worth of trip insurance was included with no opting out screen. Of course, Priceline doesn’t announce clearly that this is going to happen, instead just hiding it in the Terms of Service agreement. [More]

Bus Group Doesn't Mind If Priceline Kills Off William Shatner As Long As It's Not With One Of Their Vehicles

Bus Group Doesn't Mind If Priceline Kills Off William Shatner As Long As It's Not With One Of Their Vehicles

Priceline is reportedly offing their spokesman William Shatner in an ad, which is just fine with the American Bus Association — but they’d prefer it if his means of death is something other than a fiery bus explosion as seen in a new commercial. They’re asking the travel booking site to pull the ad, which they feel is in poor taste. [More]

Priceline Upgrades You To Reportedly Bedbug-Infested Hotel

Priceline Upgrades You To Reportedly Bedbug-Infested Hotel

Ordinarily, it would be a good thing if Priceline upgraded your bid for a 3.5-star hotel to a 4-star bid. This sometimes happens when a classier hotel accepts your bid. It wasn’t much of a bonus for Lissa, though. She wanted to avoid a certain 4-star hotel because user reviews in various places complained of bedbug infestations, so she bid only on 3.5-star establishments. Of course, this bid landed her at the allegedly infested hotel. It took her several hours of customer service hell to get out of the situation, which is still better than being chomped on by bedbugs. [More]

Antics Of Rude, Shirtless Dude Score Me A Free Hotel Room Upgrade

Antics Of Rude, Shirtless Dude Score Me A Free Hotel Room Upgrade

Regular readers of Consumerist probably know that we do occasionally write about “bad consumers,” those few who bad apples whose behavior makes things harder for the rest of us. But we don’t often see examples of good, sensible consumers actually benefiting from others’ idiotic antics. This is one such story. [More]

Hotel Issues Refund, Priceline Keeps All Of The Money

Hotel Issues Refund, Priceline Keeps All Of The Money

Wynn could use the services of a Priceline negotiator. He booked a stay at a Marriott through Priceline, but due to some confusion, the hotel put the price of the entire stay on his credit card. The hotel promised Wynn a refund of the incorrect charge, and didn’t end up charging Priceline for the hotel stay, either. That was incredibly nice of them, but leaves Wynn with a problem: Priceline still charged him, and simply kept all of the money. [More]

I Lost Priceline Hotel Reservation Because My Card Was Maxed Out

I Lost Priceline Hotel Reservation Because My Card Was Maxed Out

Josh doesn’t have a lot of money. When he and his girlfriend went to check in to the Crowne Plaza hotel room they reserved on Priceline, he handed over his credit card to confirm the reservation, and his card was declined. They wouldn’t accept his girlfriend’s card to put on file for incidentals, and they were ultimately turned away, losing the reservation…and the money they paid Priceline for the room. [More]

Priceline Restores Insanity, Moves Hotel Reservation To Different City

Priceline Restores Insanity, Moves Hotel Reservation To Different City

Priceline has a very different understanding of what a “hotel reservation” is than Shane does. He and his wife and children planned to take a once-in-a-lifetime trip to Washington, D.C. to attend this past weekend’s Rally To Restore Sanity And/or Fear put on by comedians Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert. They reserved a hotel room in a close suburb, near a Metro station, correctly assuming that traffic would make driving into the city a bad idea. [More]

Priceline Really Doesn't Want This Guy's $244 Back

Priceline Really Doesn't Want This Guy's $244 Back

Andrew tells Consumerist that he received a refund of $244.16 from Priceline.com after canceling a hotel reservation. That part isn’t the problem. The problem, from Andrew’s point of view, is that Priceline never charged him for the now-canceled hotel rooms in the first place. He doesn’t hate free money, but wonders whether Priceline will finally notice their mistake and sic a collection agency on him sometime in 2012. [More]