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New Private Sale Site SniqueAway Kicks Off Today

September 20, 2010 at 12:58 PM | by | Comment (1)

So you're now in the habit of checking Jetsetter, Tablet and Kayak before you book your next getaway. Private Sales can save you a fair whack of money on your hotel room, after all. Have you had time to get used to VoyagePrive yet?

Yes or no, ready or not, it barely matters--because nothing is stopping the steady march of newer sites joining the private sale ranks. The latest addition? SniqueAway, which launches with sales on hotels including Greenbrier Resort and Reefs Bermuda today.

Like with many of its predecessors, you must be a member to use SniqueAway but you can easily become one via invitation from another member.

Standard rooms at the Greenbier start at $112.50 a night on SniqueAway (down from the listed rate of $225) and when you click on the booking calendar, little icons tell you which nights have "a few left" or which nights offer the lowest rates. (When we checked, that was Nov 1-3 for the Greenbier, FYI.)

It looks like there may be the occasional SniqueAway exclusive extra, too--for the Greenbier, the deal includes waiving the typical daily resort fee.

SniqueAway comes from a company called Smarter Travel Media, which is part of the TripAdvisor family. This is what SniqueAway sees as its point of difference in the now-crowded private sale business. All hotels featured on the site have earned a minimum four-star rating on TripAdvisor--so, in the company's marketing speak, SniqueAway is a "members-only site where each offer is endorsed by the people."

The TripAdvisor reviews are displayed underneath the sale details for each property--which certainly saves a click or two, if you're the kind of hotel shopper who likes to toggle between user reviews in one window and price listings in another.

We have to admit, having all those user-generated reviews at our fingertips while being wooed by super low prices is not a bad feature at all. We don't remember visiting any other sale site and learning, for example, that jeezopetes from Blue Bell, PA, summed up a family vacation at The Greenbier like so:

“Great Place - Poor Doormen Service Unfortunate Incident”

As it turns out, this reviewer's experience wouldn't cause us to turn our noses up at a $112.50 a night room--but perhaps for some families it would. Letting the TripAdvisor reviews all hang out (when the site still has so many hotels quaking in their boots) gives SniqueAway an edge. It just seems more honest than the glossier sites that only give you the marketing spiel and nothing else.

What do you think? Do you want to see TripAdvisor reviews when you're browsing private sales sites?Let us know in comments below.

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Great idea!

I think that is a great idea to show reviews in the same place. I'd love to check it out. Could I get an invitation?

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