I was searching for a 1 night stay in Carcassonne, France. When I first searched for regular hotel rooms, this search came up with the results, with no 3 star hotels available. I decided that with one 2-star hotel available, if I use the name your own price system with a 2-star option, I should know exactly which hotel I will get if I bid on it. nSo I proceeded to click on the link for Name your own price. It did seem strange that a 3-star hotel was suddenly available, when there was only a 2-star option on the previous search, but I thought nothing of it new options may have come up, who knows and I selected the 3-star option. There was a note saying the following: nPlease note: The hotel we find may or may not be one that you saw on the previous page(s). nSo I thought this was normal. nI entered a price of $100 into the orange box and continued to fill out the web form to continue my reservation. After my research into hotels in the Carcassonne area, I thought of $100 as an unlikely option, but it is always worth a try. nLo and behold, my offer was immediately accepted at Hotel De La Cite. I was ecstatic about this, because Hotel De La Cite is an excellent hotel that I have read about in the area, but that did not come up on the search on the previous page. However, I have seen prices on websites such as expedia.com for the property at a rate of $500+. Needless to say this all of a sudden looks too good to be true, so I try to research some more. It turns that the Hotel De La Cite that accepted my reservation was in Lyon, France, and not Carcassonne, France. Lyon and Carcassonne are 277 miles away from each other. nI started trying to figure out what went wrong. I reviewed every step I made. Every time I tried to reproduce my searches, I had the same results – everything is reproducable. nPriceline.com policy says the following about the Name Your Own Price service they offer: nName Your Own Price and Save up to half off * nYou choose the price, area and star level. We’ll find a quality brand name or independent hotel for you! Please note: The hotel we find may or may not be one that you saw on the previous page(s). nNote that the AREA a customer would request is one of the required parameters into the search, and so hypothetically there is no way that this should be able to happen. I myself can confirm that this has always been the case when I was booking hotels through the Name your own price option. I did think it strange that there was never an option for selecting the areas surrounding my selected location usually there are a few locations upto 20 miles away or so but I thought, I’ve never done this internationally, so may be the rules here are different. nI proceeded to call priceline.com customer service about the reservation. When I mentioned that this is a blatant violation of the statement that the reservation is made in the area I requested, the customer service agent replied Yes, but it’s still in France. Perhaps I should have told her that 277 is a longer distance then that from Atlanta, GA to Charlotte, NC. nI was told by the agent that they are sorry about the mixup and that they can refund my payment less a 1-night stay and their fee; however, since I was only making a reservation for a 1-night stay and the rest of the payment consisted of their fee, there was to be no refund. I asked to speak to the agent’s manager. She replied that they have no manager, but she can transfer me to someone else. I received the same responses from the new agent – I repeated my problem to her and she said there was nothing she can do other then return my payment less the 1-night charge plus their fee. I asked if I can speak to her manager. She responded that she does not have a manager, but I can get in touch with the investor relations department. She gave me a URL for the contact information which did not exist. nIs this highway robbery – or has this now become accepted practice? nMarinanLivingston, New JerseyU.S.A. Click here to read other Rip Off Reports on priceline.com
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