Welcome!

Search Authors: Pat Romanski, Jim Kaskade, Elizabeth White, Liz McMillan, Jnan Dash

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
"There is a natural synchronization between the business models, the IoT is there to support ,” explained Brendan O'Brien, Co-founder and Chief Architect of Aria Systems, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at the 15th International Cloud Expo®, held Nov 4–6, 2014, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
An entirely new security model is needed for the Internet of Things, or is it? Can we save some old and tested controls for this new and different environment? In his session at @ThingsExpo, New York's at the Javits Center, Davi Ottenheimer, EMC Senior Director of Trust, reviewed hands-on lessons with IoT devices and reveal a new risk balance you might not expect. Davi Ottenheimer, EMC Senior Director of Trust, has more than nineteen years' experience managing global security operations and assessments, including a decade of leading incident response and digital forensics. He is co-author of t...
The Internet of Things promises to transform businesses (and lives), but navigating the business and technical path to success can be difficult to understand. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Sean Lorenz, Technical Product Manager for Xively at LogMeIn, demonstrated how to approach creating broadly successful connected customer solutions using real world business transformation studies including New England BioLabs and more.
There's Big Data, then there's really Big Data from the Internet of Things. IoT is evolving to include many data possibilities like new types of event, log and network data. The volumes are enormous, generating tens of billions of logs per day, which raise data challenges. Early IoT deployments are relying heavily on both the cloud and managed service providers to navigate these challenges. In her session at Big Data Expo®, Hannah Smalltree, Director at Treasure Data, discussed how IoT, Big Data and deployments are processing massive data volumes from wearables, utilities and other machines...
The Internet of Things will greatly expand the opportunities for data collection and new business models driven off of that data. In her session at @ThingsExpo, Esmeralda Swartz, CMO of MetraTech, discussed how for this to be effective you not only need to have infrastructure and operational models capable of utilizing this new phenomenon, but increasingly service providers will need to convince a skeptical public to participate. Get ready to show them the money!
The 3rd International Internet of @ThingsExpo, co-located with the 16th International Cloud Expo - to be held June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY - announces that its Call for Papers is now open. The Internet of Things (IoT) is the biggest idea since the creation of the Worldwide Web more than 20 years ago.
The Internet of Things will put IT to its ultimate test by creating infinite new opportunities to digitize products and services, generate and analyze new data to improve customer satisfaction, and discover new ways to gain a competitive advantage across nearly every industry. In order to help corporate business units to capitalize on the rapidly evolving IoT opportunities, IT must stand up to a new set of challenges. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Jeff Kaplan, Managing Director of THINKstrategies, will examine why IT must finally fulfill its role in support of its SBUs or face a new round of...
The Internet of Things is tied together with a thin strand that is known as time. Coincidentally, at the core of nearly all data analytics is a timestamp. When working with time series data there are a few core principles that everyone should consider, especially across datasets where time is the common boundary. In his session at Internet of @ThingsExpo, Jim Scott, Director of Enterprise Strategy & Architecture at MapR Technologies, discussed single-value, geo-spatial, and log time series data. By focusing on enterprise applications and the data center, he will use OpenTSDB as an example t...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Gridstore™, the leader in hyper-converged infrastructure purpose-built to optimize Microsoft workloads, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 16th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Gridstore™ is the leader in hyper-converged infrastructure purpose-built for Microsoft workloads and designed to accelerate applications in virtualized environments. Gridstore’s hyper-converged infrastructure is the industry’s first all flash version of HyperConverged Appliances that include both compute and storag...
WebRTC defines no default signaling protocol, causing fragmentation between WebRTC silos. SIP and XMPP provide possibilities, but come with considerable complexity and are not designed for use in a web environment. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Matthew Hodgson, technical co-founder of the Matrix.org, discussed how Matrix is a new non-profit Open Source Project that defines both a new HTTP-based standard for VoIP & IM signaling and provides reference implementations.
DevOps Summit 2015 New York, co-located with the 16th International Cloud Expo - to be held June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY - announces that it is now accepting Keynote Proposals. The widespread success of cloud computing is driving the DevOps revolution in enterprise IT. Now as never before, development teams must communicate and collaborate in a dynamic, 24/7/365 environment. There is no time to wait for long development cycles that produce software that is obsolete at launch. DevOps may be disruptive, but it is essential.
Explosive growth in connected devices. Enormous amounts of data for collection and analysis. Critical use of data for split-second decision making and actionable information. All three are factors in making the Internet of Things a reality. Yet, any one factor would have an IT organization pondering its infrastructure strategy. How should your organization enhance its IT framework to enable an Internet of Things implementation? In his session at Internet of @ThingsExpo, James Kirkland, Chief Architect for the Internet of Things and Intelligent Systems at Red Hat, described how to revolutioniz...
Connected devices and the Internet of Things are getting significant momentum in 2014. In his session at Internet of @ThingsExpo, Jim Hunter, Chief Scientist & Technology Evangelist at Greenwave Systems, examined three key elements that together will drive mass adoption of the IoT before the end of 2015. The first element is the recent advent of robust open source protocols (like AllJoyn and WebRTC) that facilitate M2M communication. The second is broad availability of flexible, cost-effective storage designed to handle the massive surge in back-end data in a world where timely analytics is e...
Scott Jenson leads a project called The Physical Web within the Chrome team at Google. Project members are working to take the scalability and openness of the web and use it to talk to the exponentially exploding range of smart devices. Nearly every company today working on the IoT comes up with the same basic solution: use my server and you'll be fine. But if we really believe there will be trillions of these devices, that just can't scale. We need a system that is open a scalable and by using the URL as a basic building block, we open this up and get the same resilience that the web enjoys.
The 3rd International Internet of @ThingsExpo, co-located with the 16th International Cloud Expo - to be held June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY - announces that its Call for Papers is now open. The Internet of Things (IoT) is the biggest idea since the creation of the Worldwide Web more than 20 years ago.
How do APIs and IoT relate? The answer is not as simple as merely adding an API on top of a dumb device, but rather about understanding the architectural patterns for implementing an IoT fabric. There are typically two or three trends: Exposing the device to a management framework Exposing that management framework to a business centric logic Exposing that business layer and data to end users. This last trend is the IoT stack, which involves a new shift in the separation of what stuff happens, where data lives and where the interface lies. For instance, it's a mix of architectural styles ...
The definition of IoT is not new, in fact it’s been around for over a decade. What has changed is the public's awareness that the technology we use on a daily basis has caught up on the vision of an always on, always connected world. If you look into the details of what comprises the IoT, you’ll see that it includes everything from cloud computing, Big Data analytics, “Things,” Web communication, applications, network, storage, etc. It is essentially including everything connected online from hardware to software, or as we like to say, it’s an Internet of many different things. The difference ...
The security devil is always in the details of the attack: the ones you've endured, the ones you prepare yourself to fend off, and the ones that, you fear, will catch you completely unaware and defenseless. The Internet of Things (IoT) is nothing if not an endless proliferation of details. It's the vision of a world in which continuous Internet connectivity and addressability is embedded into a growing range of human artifacts, into the natural world, and even into our smartphones, appliances, and physical persons. In the IoT vision, every new "thing" - sensor, actuator, data source, data con...
P2P RTC will impact the landscape of communications, shifting from traditional telephony style communications models to OTT (Over-The-Top) cloud assisted & PaaS (Platform as a Service) communication services. The P2P shift will impact many areas of our lives, from mobile communication, human interactive web services, RTC and telephony infrastructure, user federation, security and privacy implications, business costs, and scalability. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Robin Raymond, Chief Architect at Hookflash, will walk through the shifting landscape of traditional telephone and voice services ...
"Matrix is an ambitious open standard and implementation that's set up to break down the fragmentation problems that exist in IP messaging and VoIP communication," explained John Woolf, Technical Evangelist at Matrix, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at @ThingsExpo, held Nov 4–6, 2014, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.