The Trials of a Busy Mom

Why I might not be using Priceline in the future

I read a post about how you can save a whole bunch of money using the name your price option on I studied the hotels, the maps, read the tips, and did a bunch of research about what hotels are where, then tried to place my bid. In Bryce Canyon, we got a decent room at Ruby’s Inn for about $25 dollars less than the listed rate. And the room was nice enough and we almost all fit (there was the issue of the blinking light bulb all night that made it so I couldn’t sleep and had nightmares about the room catching on fire and us having to evacuate, but that’s just me and my crazy light sleeper ness).

But when we got to Mesa to the Quality Inn, things weren’t so smooth. I checked in and found that for the low low price that I had PRE-PAID, we were given a single queen studio. Just a queen bed and a bathroom. No couch, no pull out anything. Hmm. 6 of us on one queen bed? I explained politely that this was my first time using priceline, and that since it didn’t let me choose my room size, was there any way we could have a room with at least two queen beds or a bed and a couch? Front desk lady was not very understanding and explained that what I paid for was one queen, and I would have to call priceline and see if I could change my reservation. So I called priceline right there in the lobby, and they called the hotel for me and tried to help negotiate a better room. She would not budge. I ended up paying the hotel an extra $53 dollars to upgrade to a room with two DOUBLE BEDS and a pull out couch. Fine. Done. I wished that there was a manager or just SOMEONE ELSE to negotiate with, but it was just her. The perils of checking in on a Sunday afternoon.

As we hauled our stuff up to our room, we figured it wouldn’t be THAT bad and we could figure something out. Ryan said, “are we only staying 5 nights? I thought we were leaving on Saturday.” Another mistake on my part. I had not reserved enough days. No way am I going back down to the lobby to ask if we can reserve one more night. We’ll figure that out later.

Can I just say that a double bed is not big enough for two overweight large adults? Let’s just put that out there right now.
And not only is it a double bed, but it’s RIGHT up against the wall.

As we went to make up the beds and put the kids to bed, we pulled out the couch to see that it’s broken. There are no springs connecting the bottom of the bed, and part of the support thingys are not there. What to do, what to do? We called to the front to ask for sheets and blankets for the couch bed, and also told them that the springs were missing, the bed was kind of broken. The girl at the front desk just said ok. 45 minutes or so later, and we are so tired. Ryan and I went down to the front desk to at least get the blankets so we can make up the broken bed and go to sleep. At the front desk, the girl said, “Didn’t you call down to request those blankets?” yes. Yes, we did. And now we are here in person to collect them.

“You said the bed is broken? our maintenance man isn’t here after 6, so I don’t know what we can do about that” she said.
I wonder why she didn’t just say that on the phone? At this point, I just wanted to dang extra blankets and we would make do with a broken pull out couch. But she said (kind of grudgingly), “Would you like to switch rooms?” IS THERE another room available? She looked it up and realized that the room next door to ours was empty (From the looks of the parking lot, it didn’t look like the hotel was very full at all, so I wasn’t surprised). We said, that yes, we would change rooms. Ryan texted the kids from the lobby and told them to pack up their stuff, we would be switching rooms.

Maybe they gave us the oldest yuckiest room they had just because we were priceline customers. I don’t know.

This room isn’t any bigger or nicer than the other room, but it does have a newer couch that is not broken. We were able to quickly get all of our stuff out of the room, empty the fridge, bring stuff over to the other room, and get the couch bed made up in pretty quick time.

(I don’t even feel bad that they’ll have to clean two rooms for us. Is that wicked of me or what?)

Exhausted, Ryan and I laid down on the DOUBLE bed. It’s about half the size of our California King bed at home. I love my bed at home. I love my mattress. I love the fact that I am not wedged between a wall and my sweet husband and that I can actually sleep. Every time one of us moved, then it woke the other one of us. Really. I could NOT get comfortable, and was terribly cramped. After several hours of tossing and turning and disturbing Ryan’s sleep as well, I flipped so that my feet were at the head of the bed and my head was at the feet. This put my head away from the wall just a bit, and gave me a little room. Ryan, of course, was a bit shocked when he reached over and felt a foot, but it was the only way I could get any sleep at all. I thought about sleeping on the floor, but–ew–. Plus there weren’t any extra blankets for that, so I stayed in that darn small bed. When it was finally morning, I got up. Let Ryan get an hour or two of sleep without me smashing him.

Night two at this hotel we got organized and fared better. We borrowed two twin air mattresses from Robin, and kicked the kids out of the other double bed. That left Ryan and I a bed each. Greedy? Possibly. Necessary? Absolutely. We slept MUCH better. The kids didn’t mind so much sleeping on the floor all in the same room, although we had to move around all the existing furniture to get it to fit.

The redeeming qualities of this quality inn, however, would have to be the breakfast, and the pool. The kids are loving swimming in the pool every day, and although it is a tad bit cold, it’s a beautiful pool area. Also, free breakfast for 6 of us is certainly nice. And waffles? Yum.

So, that’s our experience so far. Not sure if we are going to book this hotel for one more night, or just go somewhere else. Somewhere that I can choose before committing to paying.

Sorry, priceline, you may have lost my business.


  1. jen

    Sorry you’ve had such a bad experience with priceline. I actually used them for every hotel room we got as we drove across the country to Pennsylvania and back, and of all eleven nights, we only had a problem one time–the last night, actually. I would try them again. It really is a good company.
    See you Thursday!

  2. Kyle Erickson

    Mariam is a member of Choice Hotels club (Comfort Inn, Quality Inn, Holiday Inn) and if you sign up for Choice Rewards, you can stay three times, get one night free. Don’t know if that helps.

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