Priceline Survey Indicates Boston with Biggest Hotel Rate Increase,
Washington Has Biggest Rate Decline
|NORWALK, Conn - June 28, 2006 -- Priceline.com(R) (Nasdaq: PCLN) today
released the results of its study of the Top 50 Destinations for Summer
2006. The study is based on a sampling of more than 100,000 opaque hotel
room booking requests made by priceline.com customers for the period between
June 15 and August 15, 2006. As part of its study, priceline.com compared
this year's top 50 destinations to what customers chose in 2005.
Since the priceline.com study is based on actual booking requests, and not on consumer preference polls or votes, priceline.com believes the study is one of the more accurate predictors of summer travel trends. Also, priceline.com's study focuses on specific neighborhoods instead of just cities, providing an added level of detail.
Priceline.com also conducted another study that tracked year-over-year
changes in the average retail price of a hotel room this summer for major
cities around the country. Visitors to Boston can expect the biggest increases
in hotel room prices this summer - up 20.5% for a 3-star hotel and 34.6%
for a 4-star hotel. Meanwhile, the biggest bargain is Washington, DC, where
the price of a 4-star hotel room has dropped 21.6% year over year and the
price of a 3-star hotel room has gone down 9.2%.
(Summer 2005 vs. Summer 2006)*
* This pricing study is based on average retail prices for hotel bookings made on priceline.com between
May 15 and June 13, 2005 and 2006 for check-in between June 15 and August 15, 2005 and 2006.
"Travelers who had their hearts set on a particular destination that has gone up in price this year can still keep their vacation costs in check by using priceline.com's Name Your Own Price(R) hotel option," said Chris Soder, priceline.com's Executive Vice President, Travel Services. Priceline's Name Your Own Price(R) hotel service is different from other major online travel reservation services, like Expedia.com and Hotels.com. Priceline.com customers choose the star level, neighborhood, dates and price they want to pay for a room, then priceline.com works to find a hotel willing to sell a room at that price. Customers are shown the specific hotel name and location after the purchase is completed. "By being flexible with their hotel, priceline.com customers can save up to 50% compared to the published prices they see on other major hotel reservation services such as Expedia and Hotels.com," said Mr. Soder.**
** Percent savings claim applies to Name Your Own Price(R) hotel room reservations only and are as compared to the published prices shown on Hotels.com and Expedia.com for the same hotels and the same dates. There is no guarantee that hotels or prices will be available. Actual prices and availability are always subject to change. All prices and dates may not be available at time of travel booking and savings are not guaranteed.
Priceline.com also said it has plenty of hotel rooms, airline tickets, rental cars, vacation packages and cruises available for summer 2006 travelers. For more details, visit www.priceline.com.
The top destinations portion of the study uncovered some interesting year-over-year shifts in summer travel trends. Big-city destinations are more popular this year than last, with sections of New York, Chicago, Boston, San Francisco, Seattle and Los Angeles all moving up multiple places on the 2006 Top 50 list, or cracking the list for the first time.
Most significant was the popularity of Chicago among summer travelers. Chicago's Millennium Park area rose from the 35th most popular destination in summer 2005 to the #1 spot this year, replacing the Las Vegas Strip. "We are thrilled that travelers are choosing Chicago's Millennium Park as one of their favorite destinations," said Dorothy Coyle, Director, Chicago Office of Tourism. "Millennium Park offers visitors world-class art and architecture as well as a tremendous line-up of free performances featuring artists from Chicago and around the globe."
Chicago's North Michigan Avenue area was #2 on the list, rising three places. American summer travelers were largely U.S.-centric in their choices. Few international destinations made the list, possibly due to the weakness of the dollar overseas. Vancouver (#7 and #43) and London (#35) were the two most popular international destinations among Americans.
Other destinations that rose significantly in popularity this year compared to 2005 were Hilton Head (up 19 places), New York's Midtown East (up 15 places), Anchorage (up 13 places), San Antonio's Riverwalk (up 12 places), San Francisco's Fisherman's Wharf (up 11 places) and St. Catharine's Niagara Falls (up 10 places).
Big winners in this year's Top 50 List include:
Priceline.com is the leading travel service for value-conscious leisure travelers. No other travel service gives customers more ways to save on their airline tickets, hotel rooms, rental cars, vacation packages and cruises. In addition to getting all the best published prices, leisure travelers can narrow their searches using priceline.com's TripFilter(TM) advanced search technology, create packages to save even more money, and take advantage of priceline.com's famous Name Your Own Price(R) service, which delivers the lowest prices available.
Priceline.com operates one of Europe's fastest growing hotel reservation services through Activehotels.com, Activereservations.com, Bookings.net and priceline.co.uk. The company also operates the following travel web sites: Travelweb.com, Lowestfare.com, RentalCars.com and BreezeNet.com. Priceline.com also has a personal finance service that offers home mortgages, refinancing and home equity loans through an independent licensee. Priceline.com licenses its business model to independent licensees, including priceline mortgage and certain international licensees.
|Also See:||Top 50 Destinations for New Year's Eve 2005 / December 2005|
|Top 50 Destinations for Memorial Day 2006 / May 2006|