hotel service

The USA Today reports that if the luxury hotel industry doesn’t see a rebound soon, “some five-star hotels won’t be able to maintain five-star service and frills in the future.”  The current travel environment is forcing luxury hotels to cut staff and services, which may ultimately result in some five-star hotels become four-star hotels.

This could actually be very good news for budget-conscious travelers with an affinity for luxury offerings.   As more four-star hotels shift into the marketplace, they’ll become more and more competitive for your travel dollar – putting you in a position to get a great deal.

Here’s some more travel news you can use:

  • This morning Priceline.com announced a major change to their vaunted “Name Your Own Price” model that has been the basis of their opaque hotel product since inception. Billed as a “limited time offer” until the end of March, Priceline is actually showing winning bids and allowing consumers to simply tag-along and buy the same thing, assuming availability still exists. No bidding, no guessing – just a posted price.  While it’s not perfect because Priceline may not have availability for the dates that travelers are checking (vs. what the last consumer bought), it’s still a big step towards full travel booking transparency – which we all can appreciate.
  • JetBlue is celebrating its 10th birthday by conducting a 1-day only sale where they’re offering $10 one-way fares on flights departing from New York’s JFK Airport on Tuesday-Wednesday, March 9-10, 2010.  The sale lasts until 11:59 p.m. MT today.
  • The U.S. DOT said today that it has fined US Airways $40,000 for not disclosing full ticket prices on its Web site.  The airline did not provide additional taxes and fees on initial searches for one-way flights, nor any notice that the additional costs would be added later in the transaction.  The DOT requires Internet advertising to display the full fare after taxes and fees on the first screen, along with a hyperlink that takes consumers to a page that describes the additional charges, according to the agency.