Jen commented on a post recently with this really great frugal travel trip:
Priceline offers “Express Deals” which provides basic information about a hotel – neighborhood, amenities, star level, and guest rating (in most cases). They also tell you the percentage discount you’ll get by using the Express Deal, plus the price you will pay for it.
Most people don’t take advantage of Express deals, because they don’t like not knowing which hotel they’re booking. (And once you purchase an Express Deal with your credit card, there is no backing out. You get what you get at that point.) With the information they provide, however, you can filter hotels offered by Priceline to figure out what hotel you are going to get!
Here’s how. As an example: a hotel is listed as three star, in Times Square, offers free internet and a gym, has a 7+ rating by guests, and is available for $145 (a 39%) savings. To figure out what this deal is, you back out of Express Deals and go back to the section that lists all of the hotels on Priceline. You filter your search to only show hotels in Time Square which are 3 star and have free internet and a gym. It might pull 4 matches, so you next look at which hotels are rated 7-7.9 by guests. Let’s say there are two hotels left at that point. Then it’s simple math to figure out which hotel is a 39% savings from the price listed on the screen.
Make sense? Hopefully! It takes a little practice, but with this method I’ve always been able to figure out what hotel I will get (and usually at a huge savings!). I have successfully done this over three dozen times. You should also use shop through Ebates to get 3-4% cash back on your Priceline purchase.