I saw the offer on Flyertalk within an hour of it appearing Monday. Having been burned missing previous offers by a day, I debated jumping on this one. But Melbourne, Australia? It seemed far.
Then the reports started flooding in. I have days in August! July! May! November and October! December! The fare was good almost any time all year.
Finally Monday night I jumped. Why not, for $3.00? Three nights, December 27 – 30, in Melbourne. It would make a helluva way to spend the week between Christmas and New Year’s.
Then the waiting game began. What would Princeline do once they discovered the mistake?
The first answer came Tuesday to howls of disappointment and anger.
Dear priceline.com customer:
We noticed that you recently took advantage of a special promotion offered by the Langham Hotel Melbourne in Melbourne Australia for your Trip Number XXXXXXXXXXX. The promotional rate advertised was 1.00 Australian dollar per room.
Please note that this promotion requires you to present an Air New Zealand identification card upon check-in at the hotel. This is a valid promotion, however we believe that some customers may have booked multiple rooms in spite of the requirements. Therefore we are cancelling all bookings made prior to noon on April 26, 2005 with this promotional rate.
If you do qualify for the promotion please visit Air New Zealand’s Redemption site, www.airnz.com, to book your room(s). Remember you must show your Air Nz card at the hotel to qualify for the rate.
We apologize for any inconvenience.
priceline.com Customer Service
The charges against Priceline flew. “How dare they cancel this without contacting me?” “My confirmation said nothing about an Air NZ card!” “This was a valid contract between Priceline and myself.” “Priceline never let ME cancel on a mistake, how can they do so?” Recrimination abounded.
Now, as the cry of patrons rises, new word comes. Priceline is re-evaluating the situation and will contact those who booked the rate once a final decision has been made.
So, the waiting continues…