Yesterday I made a bid for a Priceline ‘Name Your Own Price’ hotel in San Diego, CA. Unfortunately, I did not get the hotel rate/place that I wanted. I had to figure out a way to get the reservation refunded. Unfortunately, Priceline is pretty darn tough about cancelling Priceline NYOP reservations, and the only (known) exception is death of a family member.
At first I emailed Priceline and asked if they could please refund it. They said “absolutely not, no way, no how” (OK, I’m paraphrasing!). Next, I tried to pull a technicality. You see, when I made my reservation, there were two districts available for Gaslamp: ‘Gaslamp Quarter’ and ‘Gaslamp Quarter South – Convention Center’. I only selected ‘Gaslamp Quarter.’
Now, the hotel the system gave me, the Andaz San Diego, is technically within the Gaslamp Quarter. Priceline gives you a map of the selected district, and the Andaz San Diego was in it. However, when you search the Andaz San Diego on the normal Priceline booking engine, it shows the hotel as being in the ‘Gaslamp Quarter – Convention Center.’
I made the claim that Priceline’s own site said the Andaz San Diego was in a different district than the district I chose. The first telephone agent would have nothing to do with it, and transferred me to the supervisor. The supervisor was a little more helpful, but said he could not cancel it. I asked “What if the hotel agrees, would Priceline agree?” He said yes, and made a note on my file to that effect. I called the hotel, and the lovely front desk agent was happy to refund the reservation (interestingly, she noted that my reservation had free cancellation until the day of arrival!). I then called Priceline back, who called the hotel to confirm that they would cancel, and within 5 minutes, the Priceline agent confirmed a full refund. 10 minutes later I got a refund email. Score!
So, it never hurts to ask and ask and ask if you don’t get what you want on a Priceline NYOP reservation.