Wearables Authors: Carmen Gonzalez, Roger Strukhoff, TJ Randall, Derek Weeks, Elizabeth White

News Feed Item

Surge In Priceline.com App Hurricane Sandy Bookings Shows More Consumers Go Mobile To Secure Emergency Hotel Rooms

NORWALK, Conn., Dec. 18, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- For priceline.com's (Nasdaq: PCLN) mobile apps team, the sudden spike in booking activity beginning October 25th  was almost as telling as the weather reports that something major was about to happen in the northeastern U.S.

It was a scenario they'd seen before in 2011, when a freak October snowstorm left many without electricity and a warm place to stay.  Hurricane Sandy has just passed over Cuba and was churning toward landfall in the States.  Mobile-equipped consumers in the soon-to-be-affected tri-state area (New Jersey/New York/Connecticut) wasted no time firing up their Priceline: Hotels, Flights & Rental Cars(sm) app to secure safe lodging in advance of the monster storm. 

"Mobile devices are fast becoming an essential part of an emergency preparedness kit," said John Caine, priceline.com's Chief Product Officer.  "Finding accommodations in a weather emergency is usually a race for a limited number of rooms.  A phone book and a telephone can be a time-consuming recipe for disaster.  With an iOS or Android phone and the Priceline: Hotels, Flights & Rental Cars(sm) app, consumers instantly have comprehensive lists of hotels on-screen and can book those fast-disappearing rooms with just a few taps."

Looking at the combined booking activity for all three affected states, it was clear that speed in getting a room was important with Hurricane Sandy fast approaching.  On October 26th, bookings at hotels located within 5 miles of customers were running 67% higher than normal (Hurricane Sandy was still 3 days away).  By Sunday the 28th (the day before Sandy's landfall), those bookings were 129% above normal levels.

Demand for rooms was keenest in the affected parts of New York State, where bookings at hotels within 5 miles of customers were running 132% above normal on October 28th, and 142% above normal on the 31st.  Also on the 28th, bookings at Connecticut hotels within 5 miles of customers were 109% above normal, and 108% above normal further south in New Jersey.

As nearby hotel availability dwindled, customers broadened their search, despite deteriorating travel conditions.  On Friday the 25th, average bookings in the 3-state area at hotels between 5 and 35 miles away from customers were up only 22% above normal.  By Sunday the 28th, the more distant bookings were approximately 78% above normal.

In addition to the added miles, consumers were broadening their hotel star preferences in an attempt to secure rooms.  On October 24th, before the spike, the average star level requested by priceline.com app customers was a 3.  By October 27th, it had averaged down to 2.91, then down to 2.61 on October 31st

By October 29th, landfall day in New Jersey, hotels in the affected tri-state area were under sell-out conditions, and the mobile booking trend data showed it.  Even for hotels between 5 miles and 35 miles away from consumers, the 3-state average accepted bookings from the priceline.com app had tumbled to 32% below normal levels.  Availability of rooms had dried up, leaving some to wait out the storm and its after-effects at home.  Connecticut residents were hit hardest by the hotel shortage, with bookings on October 29th running 86% below normal for hotels within 35 miles of a customer.  Over in New York, October 29th bookings were 28% below normal levels for hotels within 35 miles of a customer.

"The Hurricane Sandy data indicates that mobile devices and apps are emerging as the 'go-to' solutions for consumers when emergency weather-related travel is required," said Caine.  "They are using these apps to help them be first in line for travel services.  And it now appears that, unlike the typical last-minute booking activity we see among mobile travelers, these customers are most definitely not waiting around to make their bookings.  In fact, our mobile customers may have been days ahead of the heaviest reservation request activity seen by area hotels."

Priceline.com's travel app, Priceline: Hotels, Flights & Rental Cars(sm), is optimized for the iPhone5 and is available for all iOS devices (iPhone, iPod touch, iPad, iPad mini).  It can be downloaded for free from the iTunes store http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/priceline-hotel-car-negotiator/id336381998?mt=8&uo=4.  Priceline.com also offers a version of the app, with hotel and rental car booking features, for Android, that can be downloaded for free from the Android market https://market.android.com/details?id=com.priceline.android.negotiator. Travelers with other devices can access priceline.com's mobile-friendly website at m.priceline.com.

The app enables consumers to make their travel reservations up to the last-minute from virtually anywhere.  In need of a hotel?  Travelers can choose from over 201,000 published-price hotels around the world.  They can also take advantage of Express Deals(sm), a new hotel service that saves up to 45% on hotel rooms without bidding. With Express Deals(sm), customers view a page that includes amenities (pool, gym, on-site restaurant, etc.), hotel star level, neighborhood, guest satisfaction scores, and a specially discounted sale price.  In many cases, customers can choose their bedding type (1 king, 2 doubles, etc.).  After booking at the discounted price, the name of the specific hotel is revealed.  Last-minute bookers also can try  Tonight-Only Deals(sm), a service only available on the app, saves up to 35% on last-minute rooms and names the specific hotel offering the deal.  How about a rental car? Choose from a variety of car types, brands and published-prices, or use priceline.com's Name Your Own Price® rental car service to bid on a rental car. Customers with iOS devices also can book airline tickets on the app.

iPad, iPhone, iPod Touch and iTunes are trademarks of Apple, Inc., registered in the U.S. and other countries. Android is a registered trademark of Google, Inc.

About The Priceline Group
The Priceline Group (Nasdaq: PCLN) is a leader in global online hotel reservations, with over 270,000 participating hotels worldwide. The Group is composed of four primary brands - Booking.com, priceline.com, Agoda.com and Rentalcars.com - and several ancillary brands. The Priceline Group provides online travel services in over 180 countries in Europe, North America, South America, the Asia-Pacific region, the Middle East and Africa.

Booking.com is the number one online hotel reservation service in the world, offering over 250,000 hotels (as of December 4, 2012), and is available in 41 languages. More recent hotel counts are available on the Booking.com website. Priceline.com gives leisure travelers multiple ways to save on their airline tickets, hotel rooms, rental cars, vacation packages and cruises.

In addition to getting compelling published prices, travelers can take advantage of priceline.com's famous Name Your Own Price® service, which can deliver the lowest prices available, or the recently added Express DealsSM, where travelers can take advantage of hotel discounts without bidding.

Agoda.com is an Asia-based online hotel reservation service that is available in 38 languages. Rentalcars.com is a multinational car hire service, offering its reservation services in over 6,000 locations. Customer support is provided in 40 languages.

SOURCE Priceline.com

More Stories By PR Newswire

Copyright © 2007 PR Newswire. All rights reserved. Republication or redistribution of PRNewswire content is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of PRNewswire. PRNewswire shall not be liable for any errors or delays in the content, or for any actions taken in reliance thereon.

@ThingsExpo Stories
We are reaching the end of the beginning with WebRTC, and real systems using this technology have begun to appear. One challenge that faces every WebRTC deployment (in some form or another) is identity management. For example, if you have an existing service – possibly built on a variety of different PaaS/SaaS offerings – and you want to add real-time communications you are faced with a challenge relating to user management, authentication, authorization, and validation. Service providers will w...
DevOps is being widely accepted (if not fully adopted) as essential in enterprise IT. But as Enterprise DevOps gains maturity, expands scope, and increases velocity, the need for data-driven decisions across teams becomes more acute. DevOps teams in any modern business must wrangle the ‘digital exhaust’ from the delivery toolchain, "pervasive" and "cognitive" computing, APIs and services, mobile devices and applications, the Internet of Things, and now even blockchain. In this power panel at @...
SYS-CON Media announced today that @WebRTCSummit Blog, the largest WebRTC resource in the world, has been launched. @WebRTCSummit Blog offers top articles, news stories, and blog posts from the world's well-known experts and guarantees better exposure for its authors than any other publication. @WebRTCSummit Blog can be bookmarked ▸ Here @WebRTCSummit conference site can be bookmarked ▸ Here
SYS-CON Events announced today that Streamlyzer will exhibit at the 19th International Cloud Expo, which will take place on November 1–3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Streamlyzer is a powerful analytics for video streaming service that enables video streaming providers to monitor and analyze QoE (Quality-of-Experience) from end-user devices in real time.
You have great SaaS business app ideas. You want to turn your idea quickly into a functional and engaging proof of concept. You need to be able to modify it to meet customers' needs, and you need to deliver a complete and secure SaaS application. How could you achieve all the above and yet avoid unforeseen IT requirements that add unnecessary cost and complexity? You also want your app to be responsive in any device at any time. In his session at 19th Cloud Expo, Mark Allen, General Manager of...
One of biggest questions about Big Data is “How do we harness all that information for business use quickly and effectively?” Geographic Information Systems (GIS) or spatial technology is about more than making maps, but adding critical context and meaning to data of all types, coming from all different channels – even sensors. In his session at @ThingsExpo, William (Bill) Meehan, director of utility solutions for Esri, will take a closer look at the current state of spatial technology and ar...
SYS-CON Events announced today that SoftNet Solutions will exhibit at the 19th International Cloud Expo, which will take place on November 1–3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. SoftNet Solutions specializes in Enterprise Solutions for Hadoop and Big Data. It offers customers the most open, robust, and value-conscious portfolio of solutions, services, and tools for the shortest route to success with Big Data. The unique differentiator is the ability to architect and ...
The IoT industry is now at a crossroads, between the fast-paced innovation of technologies and the pending mass adoption by global enterprises. The complexity of combining rapidly evolving technologies and the need to establish practices for market acceleration pose a strong challenge to global enterprises as well as IoT vendors. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Clark Smith, senior product manager for Numerex, will discuss how Numerex, as an experienced, established IoT provider, has embraced a ...
Cloud based infrastructure deployment is becoming more and more appealing to customers, from Fortune 500 companies to SMEs due to its pay-as-you-go model. Enterprise storage vendors are able to reach out to these customers by integrating in cloud based deployments; this needs adaptability and interoperability of the products confirming to cloud standards such as OpenStack, CloudStack, or Azure. As compared to off the shelf commodity storage, enterprise storages by its reliability, high-availabil...
Donna Yasay, President of HomeGrid Forum, today discussed with a panel of technology peers how certification programs are at the forefront of interoperability, and the answer for vendors looking to keep up with today's growing industry for smart home innovation. "To ensure multi-vendor interoperability, accredited industry certification programs should be used for every product to provide credibility and quality assurance for retail and carrier based customers looking to add ever increasing num...
In the next forty months – just over three years – businesses will undergo extraordinary changes. The exponential growth of digitization and machine learning will see a step function change in how businesses create value, satisfy customers, and outperform their competition. In the next forty months companies will take the actions that will see them get to the next level of the game called Capitalism. Or they won’t – game over. The winners of today and tomorrow think differently, follow different...
“Media Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 19th International Cloud Expo, which will take place on November 1–3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. CloudBerry Backup is a leading cross-platform cloud backup and disaster recovery solution integrated with major public cloud services, such as Amazon Web Services, Microsoft Azure and Google Cloud Platform.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Super Micro Computer, Inc., a global leader in Embedded and IoT solutions, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 7-9, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Supermicro (NASDAQ: SMCI), the leading innovator in high-performance, high-efficiency server technology, is a premier provider of advanced server Building Block Solutions® for Data Center, Cloud Computing, Enterprise IT, Hadoop/Big Data, HPC and ...
Web Real-Time Communication APIs have quickly revolutionized what browsers are capable of. In addition to video and audio streams, we can now bi-directionally send arbitrary data over WebRTC's PeerConnection Data Channels. With the advent of Progressive Web Apps and new hardware APIs such as WebBluetooh and WebUSB, we can finally enable users to stitch together the Internet of Things directly from their browsers while communicating privately and securely in a decentralized way.
For basic one-to-one voice or video calling solutions, WebRTC has proven to be a very powerful technology. Although WebRTC’s core functionality is to provide secure, real-time p2p media streaming, leveraging native platform features and server-side components brings up new communication capabilities for web and native mobile applications, allowing for advanced multi-user use cases such as video broadcasting, conferencing, and media recording.
SYS-CON Events announced today that LeaseWeb USA, a cloud Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS) provider, will exhibit at the 19th International Cloud Expo, which will take place on November 1–3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. LeaseWeb is one of the world's largest hosting brands. The company helps customers define, develop and deploy IT infrastructure tailored to their exact business needs, by combining various kinds cloud solutions.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Hitrons Solutions will exhibit at the 19th International Cloud Expo, which will take place on November 1–3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Hitrons Solutions Inc. is distributor in the North American market for unique products and services of small and medium-size businesses, including cloud services and solutions, SEO marketing platforms, and mobile applications.
Successful digital transformation requires new organizational competencies and capabilities. Research tells us that the biggest impediment to successful transformation is human; consequently, the biggest enabler is a properly skilled and empowered workforce. In the digital age, new individual and collective competencies are required. In his session at 19th Cloud Expo, Bob Newhouse, CEO and founder of Agilitiv, will draw together recent research and lessons learned from emerging and established ...
November 1–3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Penta Security is a leading vendor for data security solutions, including its encryption solution, D’Amo. By using FPE technology, D’Amo allows for the implementation of encryption technology to sensitive data fields without modification to schema in the database environment. With businesses having their data become increasingly more complicated in their mission-critical applications (such as ERP, CRM, HRM), continued ...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Enzu will exhibit at the 19th International Cloud Expo, which will take place on November 1–3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Enzu’s mission is to be the leading provider of enterprise cloud solutions worldwide. Enzu enables online businesses to use its IT infrastructure to their competitive advantage. By offering a suite of proven hosting and management services, Enzu wants companies to focus on the core of their online busine...