Priceline Bait and Switch

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Feb 17, 2018
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#1
Im a frequent traveler and I often use online travel agencies like Expedia etc. with no trouble. I travel to Nashville, TN at least once a month and always stay in the West End area of Nashville. When looking on line using these travel agencies you can narrow your search to the area within your travel destination. I decided to use Priceline, I have no Idea why. Prices for hotels fluctuate in Nashville depending on what's happening in the city at that time, so it helps to do some shopping. I saw one of those "unnamed hotel great deals", which I never book. But considering it was advertised as "Nashville West End location near Vanderbilt"etc. and I've stayed at all of them at one time or another, they are all acceptable. I enter my info and press confirm. Up pops my confirmation thanking me for making my reservation at "The Comfort Inn of Downtown Nashville", smack in downtown area nowhere near the West End. Wait, what? No that's not right. That's not what I booked. My credit card was immediately charged the $500 dollars for my two night stay for the trip next month. I immediately called the "customer service", that name's a joke. When I spoke to "Irish" on I-chat he explained that my booking was confirmed, and non changeable non refundable, period end of story! I asked to be connected to a supervisor and he said I could chat with one but no one has authority to refund or modify the reservation in any way. And that was that. I was left with no recourse except to call my credit card company and tell them that I had fallen prey to the oldest trick in the book, the old Bait and Switch. Priceline advertises a hotel as a specific thing in a specific area and after you book, you get something completely different, with no recourse. My Priceline reservation number for this scam is :xxxxxxx4. Hope you guys can help. Thanks

Note: edited to remove confirmation number.
 

Neil Maley

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#2
This is the name of the hotel, isn’t it? The name says Downtown Vanderbilt.

Why are you saying it’s not what you bought? You may lose your dispute because you really got what you bid on and chose an opaque booking.

Comfort Inn Downtown Nashville-Vanderbilt
3.6
(599)
3-star hotel
 
Last edited:
Jan 6, 2015
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#3
Having lived in Nashville, perhaps I can shed some light on this ...

The first clue was "Nashville West End location near Vanderbilt, etc." Vanderbilt is located very close to what is technically midtown/downtown, which means the hotel should be close - and this one is. I measured it at 1.5 miles from VU.

It's a very convenient hotel, with ready access to the interstate. I'm hoping you give it a try ...
 
Sep 19, 2015
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#4
Priceline categorizes the Comfort Inn Downtown Nashville as being in the West End:

Comfort Inn Downtown
Vanderbilt - Music Row - West End Map

Whether that is accurate, I cannot say, but this hotel shows up when I search for Vanderbilt-Music Row-West End.

If location is important than one should not use opaque sites.
 
Jan 6, 2015
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#5
I agree with Christina about using opaque sites. If my location needs are in a narrow area, it's best to book directly.

And just as an FYI, if you look at Google maps, Vanderbilt is in "midtown". The maps on the VisitNashville site show that as well. But then in their page that lists sites int he "West End" they list Vanderbilt and The Pantheon. So it's often really hard to pin down.

The impression I have of OTAs (Online Travel Agencies) is that they will describe property locations "their way". I'm not saying that is wrong or intentionally deceptive, but it is reality. And in this case, they did state that the "hidden hotel" was near Vanderbilt, which it is.

But only you can decide how much effort it's worth to fight this ...
 
Likes: jsn55
Feb 17, 2018
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#6
I've booked several hotels on Priceline using this feature. During the process you are presented a map with a shaded area in which the property can be located. Here is the map presented for Vanderbilt-Music Row-West End. I added the arrow to point where the Comfort Inn Downtown is located. As it is located within the area they show at the time of booking, it is very unlikely they will let you change or allow a refund.

While you can dispute the charge, you most likely will lose and there is a chance you may loss the reservation.

 
Last edited:

Neil Maley

Moderator
Staff Member
Advocate
Dec 27, 2014
12,026
12,257
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www.promalvacations.com
#7
I've booked several hotels on Priceline using this feature. During the process you are presented a map with a shaded area in which the property can be located. Here is the map presented for Vanderbilt-Music Row-West End. I added the arrow to point where the Comfort Inn Downtown is located. As it is located within the area they show at the time of booking, it is very unlikely they will let you change or allow a refund.

While you can dispute the charge, you most likely will lose and there is a chance you may loss the reservation.

View attachment 1651
Thank you for posting this. It is even more clear now that there is really not a problem with the hotel. It is certainly not “bait and switch”- it seems like our writer got just what they bid on and it’s quite possible they will lose the dispute.

And it’s too bad that the writer didn’t go directly to the hotel website - although they didn’t state the dates, I see rooms there from $191 per night during the week. Not sure what the stay dates are though. And it’s a cancelable rate on the hotel website.

Unfortunately since you have already started the chargeback process- we really can’t give you any advice other than to wait and see what happens with the dispute. Priceline most likely won’t talk with you at all once a dispute is started.
 
Jan 6, 2015
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#8
I agree with Neil, FALTraveler, about your map. I tried to find it using their "neighborhood" map feature but all it did when I chose "West End" was "clock" and never displayed a map (this happened on two different browsers). I didn't want to simulate a booking ...
 
Likes: Neil Maley

Neil Maley

Moderator
Staff Member
Advocate
Dec 27, 2014
12,026
12,257
113
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www.promalvacations.com
#10
ljragazzo, I see you have been visiting but have not remarked. I hope we have shown you that there was no bait and switch- you really did get what Priceline advertised, especially when we could see the Priceline map and how it showed the hotel was in the zone you bid on.

I hope we can convince you that canceling the dispute and accepting the room is in your best interest because Priceline did nothing wrong.
 
Likes: VoR61
Feb 17, 2018
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#11
I agree with Neil, FALTraveler, about your map. I tried to find it using their "neighborhood" map feature but all it did when I chose "West End" was "clock" and never displayed a map (this happened on two different browsers). I didn't want to simulate a booking ...
To see the map area for the opaque booking, you have to select Express Deal, then choose the Vanderbilt - Music Row - West End neighborhood. The deals will pop up which will allow the map view.
 
Likes: Neil Maley

Neil Maley

Moderator
Staff Member
Advocate
Dec 27, 2014
12,026
12,257
113
New York
www.promalvacations.com
#12
To see the map area for the opaque booking, you have to select Express Deal, then choose the Vanderbilt - Music Row - West End neighborhood. The deals will pop up which will allow the map view.
Thank you for that information. So it seems the writer just may not have been familiar with how these opaque deals work on
Priceline and may not have done the appropriate research before making his purchase. Which isn’t Priceline’s fault.
 
Likes: VoR61