Priceline and Expedia are both horrible now

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Back in the old days, Expedia was excellent, Travelocity was excellent, Priceline was good and Orbitz was decent.

Nowadays due to mergers and acquisitions, these firms are horrible.  Incompetent and corrupt players.  They make money by huge change fees, avoiding payment to airlines and hotels, making false claims on hotel quality, being low in the queue for rental car and more.  Complaints seem to be constant and not favorable in any way.

I used to find Kayak best for domestic pricing straight from airlines.  Now the fares are showing up mostly directed fo their partners who are all of low quality.

Google flights and ITA matrix are still good and Hipmunk seems to be good as well.  Tried a new one highly rated on app store but it was all quotes from low grade sellers.  Very misleading.  

Airlines seem to be best way to book tickets depending on what airline you prefer based on choice.  These days sticking to an alliance or preferred airline better than before though I am sure people have highly rated local consolidator / agents they know and trust since the trust level on online ones is poor and I don't know of any good online ones at the moment.  

American Airlines owned Travelocity and now its fares are essentially on its own website and internal systems.  I don't believe their fares are even on search sites anymore but there could be a small few.

Momondo also has fares from lower grade online firms.  

 Published fares seem to require airline websites more than ever while unpublished requires a quality consolidator agent who is preferably local and someone with recommendation and you trust.

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yup. When they don't have competition they don't have to try very hard

Since you posted this I have a question. I am planning to to go to Hong Kong for 3-4 weeks with a side trip to Singapore and China in July. Singapore (Mong Kong) will be my home base-no choice my friend is working there. Does anyone have any idea of the best (value wise) hotel/efficiency apt. in the area? I am looking for a place with a small fridge (and a microwave) if possible. Also need access to a laundry facility either on site or close by. I am considering Airbnb but I have never been to Asia so I am not as comfortable using it there. Also any cheap way to get a tour guide for HK or the other countries. Thanks.

Also NEED a fitness center onsite or close.

Never thought much of Expedia or Travelocity. Used to use Orbitz ten years ago but not much since.

But Priceline still works great for me - what's wrong with it? Still getting great hotel deals...

Just read through the complaints on Priceline from customers and you see what tactics they play. They make money by keeping it away from the consumer and spending as little as possible for the reservations. Priceline is really all marketting and a database front end to travel. I can't say they dkn't have some decent deals a percentage of the time where a hotel would charge 100 on its own deep discount rate and non published rates are selling for say 20 a night example so they charge 50 and pocket rhe 30 profit. While you think you saved 50. But cusrtomer service is so poor at Priceline I would rather pay the 100 or use anorher way to get a discounted rate even in those situations.

Some people use Priceline because of a commercial and never shop direct rates and other ways to get the hotels and pay more than they should.

From my perspective there are many much better ways of booking more hassle free travel even though as we all know, even a fully refundable airfsre ticket on a top rwted carrier could still have issues.

Can't comment on Asian hotel market.  Use internet to search for the nice hotels which suit your parameters.  Then use internet to search for pricing from those properties directly or find a quality agent.  Random internet sites and middlemen are bad approach.  Quality hotels in asia are plentiful.

Deeder, all businesses - at least the successful ones - "make money by keeping it away from the consumer and spending as little as possible for the reservations." They spend as little as they can and charge as much as they can. What wrong with that? Consumers will choose the best prices they find.

No one is forcing you to use Priceline or Expedia or whatever. I use Priceline's "Name Your Own Price" service because I still get great hotel prices with them. If you don't, try someone else.

JD94 - try Agoda or Asiatravel.

Thanks for the responses guys!

I do really well booking smaller hotels in Asia via

I would rather book hotels directlly unless I had a specialized local agent I could trust who had access to insider deals. Customer service on online services tends to be poor at best.

The problem with hotels,com which is owned by Expedia is poor customer service.

Asia apparently has a nice mix of hotels as you can see from legitimate hotel searches. Hilton has some Conrad and Hilton in Asia and I have points with Hilton so I could get free nights but there are some spectacular hotels in Asia which aren't Hilton. Saw a Hilton doubletree being built in Singapore if I recall in addition to a Conrad and Hilton. The doubletree is a nice value hotel for Singapore and easier on the rewards points, Singapore seems like it is lowering airfare and hotel prices to bring in more customers. Albeit with lower class service. Scoot and Norweigan for Singapore flights amongst others, and adding doubletree from Hilton which is a lower grade Hilton hotel and I presume others chains will have slightly lower grade as well.

Not sure what the point of this thread is. Expedia owns Travelocity and Orbitz. If you are buying airline tickets, they are generally the same as airline website pricing especially for US airlines.

thanks for info

Well. I booked a Disney Cruise at Expedia and the price was practically the same as booking from Disney. (No upfront discount.) However, eBates had a 12% promotion on Expedia which even beats the offer from Costco. (in the form of Costco Gift cards.) In addition to that 12% cashback I also earned Expedia+ points, which I used on one of their VIP+ hotels for my next trip.(the points values are doubled at VIP+ hotels) That is in addition to a 50 off 200 limited time coupon yesterday. With all that I was able to get a $400 hotel room with $66 of cash. It is very YMMV but worked well to me. I did notice though I could have saved about $30 on the rooms (by not having the Expedia fees) on sites like Agoda. But the $50 coupon plus the points offers were enough to offset. Agoda does also participate in eBates cashback program. Not sure how often they have 12% cashback sale though.

These days, I'm finding some of the cheapest rates directly from the hotel's site.

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