Everyone deserves to escape the daily grind from time to time. Booking your next trip shouldn’t cause anxiety or prevent you from enjoying your time away. In this comprehensive article, we’ll dive deep into the comparison between Expedia vs. Priceline based on our experience.
Ultimately, you should feel confident booking your next travel experience. We’ll uncover the pros and cons of each site and provide you with the confidence to enjoy your next trip.
Expedia vs. Priceline: The Battle of Booking Sites
We will compare Expedia vs. Priceline by category so that we can clearly highlight how the two platforms compare. We will talk through the pros and cons of each site so that you can book your next trip with confidence.
Expedia vs. Priceline: In-Depth Feature Comparison
Expedia and Priceline both offer mature websites with most of the services and features that their customers could potentially ask for.
Expedia Services and Features
For example, Expedia lists hotels with special discounts at the top of their listing, and it’s easy to see important information before you ever click on a hotel option. You can also see which hotels participate in the ‘Reserve Now, Pay Later’ program, which essentially allows you to book the hotel and pay at the hotel.
And with a platform like Expedia’s, you will find that some of the best features are baked in with such simplicity that you might overlook them. Instead of a vague star rating system that requires additional research, each hotel is rated out of 10. Plus, it’s easy to see how many reviews contributed to such a rating.
The other two services and features worth mentioning are bundling and the Expedia Rewards program.
While bundling is a straightforward concept, it’s an essential part of why you should use Expedia and worth mentioning. You will save hundreds of dollars when you book a combination of airfare, your hotel, and a rental car together. This is similar to Priceline, but we would be remiss to ignore it completely.
In regards to the Expedia Rewards program, members have instant access to member pricing, which can save 10%. Plus, not only can you save money on the front end, but you will earn rewards on the back end.
Priceline Services and Features
Priceline.com is best known for its ‘Express Deals’ and ‘Price Breakers.’ They no longer offer the Name-Your-Own-Price tool you recall from frequent TV commercials, but they still have great deals.
In comparing Priceline vs. Expedia services and features, it’s a close call, but Priceline has the edge in my view. This is largely because of the Express Deals and Price Breakers.
Priceline’s Express Deals highlight a collection of highly discounted rates. These rates are identifiable by the Express Deals badge, and the listed price represents the already deeply discounted rate. The main thing you should know about Express Deals is that they are non-refundable.
Priceline’s Pricebreakers is another fun way to find discounted rates, though, admittedly, some people (myself included) might be a little nervous to use Pricebreakers.
Why? Well, the way it works is that Priceline shows you three hotels and the extra discounted rate. Should you choose the Pricebreaker option, you don’t know which hotel you’ve booked until after you book the stay.
Hotels offer extra discounted rates, but these low prices aren’t available to everyone. Priceline protects the hotel by not directly marketing the low rate.
Plus, in competition with the Expedia Rewards program, Priceline offers the Priceline VIP experience. The loyalty program offers even more discounted rates, loyalty perks, and more.
Ease of Use: Who Has The Better User Interface and Experience?
The Expedia.com user interface is straightforward and easy to use. In fact, if there is one knock that we have on the Expedia user interface is that it is so simple it is almost boring. The platform also leaves some features on the table.
Based on my experience, my favorite part of the Expedia.com layout is that search options and filters are available but not busy. You can easily filter by your favorite hotel brand or by certain amenities. You can also expand a map so that you can choose a hotel convenient to your end destination.
Most travel booking sites have these features, but the beauty here is how simply these options are baked into the interface and experience.
In comparison, Priceline.com is very similar, but in our experience, Priceline offers a little more optionality and personality. This also makes the website a little more busy. Of course, Priceline was long famous for its Name-Your-Own-Price tool, but even that has gone by the wayside.
The result is that most of the modern online travel websites are very homogenous. There is very little difference in the user experience when comparing Expedia.com vs. Priceline.com. We did notice that Priceline offered better prices for our trips, but more on that later.
Users of both websites will appreciate the ability to book packages at discounted fares, and the user interfaces are very easy to use. Still, I prefer the Expedia interface.
Mobile App Experience
The mobile app experience for each brand very much reflects the overall online experience. The Expedia interface is sleek and straightforward, while the Priceline interface is more streamlined than the overall web experience.
There is one distinct difference. Expedia quickly integrated a ChatGPT feature that will help you explore various trip ideas. It’s a unique tool that helps you move past much of your indecision and planning roadblocks.
It remains to be seen whether the feature has staying power or whether Priceline might eventually integrate a similar tool. Still, for now, in comparing Expedia vs. Priceline mobile app experiences, Expedia has the advantage.
Does Expedia or Priceline Have Better Deals and Discounts?
In comparing Expedia vs. Priceline, it is worth noting that the two platforms are much more comprehensive than just Expedia.com and Priceline.com. The companies and platforms that underpin these two sites underpin large swaths of travel booking sites across the internet.
There are two big ways that this benefits you. Firstly, the companies can offer the best pricing options and bundle discounts because they have large volumes they can leverage across their network.
The other way this benefits you is that the sites offer more options across their network than some smaller competitors. Having more options gives you the opportunity to choose the best fit and the best price. That’s the definition of value.
Still, while both platforms are solid, they aren’t identical. In our experience, and based on travel booking experiments, Priceline also offers better pricing than Expedia. The differences aren’t staggering, but we often saw a 5% package difference between the two sites.
Your experience might be different based on a variety of factors impacting their algorithms, but we found the difference was noticeable. Based on this, we recommend that you start with Priceline.com if you are looking for the best price.
Customer Service Quality: Expedia vs. Priceline Support Analysis
If there is one large downside to using an OTA (online travel agency), its that customer service has limited ability to provide support at the partner hotels, airlines, etc. This is quite evident in some of their online reviews.
Expedia, for instance, owns a Trustpilot score that is 1 out of 5 stars. Priceline has a much better Trustpilot score at 3.6 out of 5 stars. While a 3.6-star rating isn’t exactly a gleaming reputation, it’s still significantly higher than that of its rival company.
In comparing Priceline vs. Expedia for customer service, Priceline wins in a landslide.
Diving Deeper: Travel Site Contenders
It’s always helpful to start a brand comparison by providing a little background information to set the stage. Expedia and Priceline are much more than just two travel booking sites. Respectively, they control the travel booking industry in ways you might not imagine.
More About Expedia
While Expedia.com is one of the most popular travel booking sites on the internet, the Expedia Group owns Expedia.com. In fact, they own much more than Expedia.com. They also own the likes of Travelocity, Hotels.com, VRBO, Orbitz, Trivago, and several other entities.
In fact, when you compare Expedia.com vs. Travelocity, you realize they are virtually the exact same websites.
The downside for you is that there isn’t as much variety on the web as you probably thought. On the other hand, Expedia has access to massive amounts of data, which they can use to improve their products, offerings, and recommendations.
More About Priceline
Priceline is also a popular online booking site that often offers discount rates. Like Expedia, Priceline is part of a larger group known as Booking Holdings. Booking.com and Kayak.com are sister sites for Priceline.com.
Priceline also has a strong network, with 400 airline partnerships and more than 300,000 hotel partnerships. With that type of network, Priceline offers you variety so that you can find the perfect travel accommodations in your price range.
Is Expedia or Priceline Better?
Expedia.com offers a clean user interface that is easy to use and avoids feeling like an interactive sales pitch. Still, Priceline.com routinely offers better pricing. In comparing Expedia vs. Priceline, you will also find that Priceline has much higher-rated customer service.
If you don’t already have a profile with either program, we recommend that you start with Priceline because its customer service has a better reputation. You can also join the Priceline VIP rewards program to collect points for future travel.
Are Priceline and Expedia The Same?
Expedia and Priceline are similar platforms you can use to book travel online, but they are different companies. Expedia.com is part of the Expedia Group, which also includes brands like Travelocity and VRBO. Priceline.com is a sister site to Booking.com.
Final Verdict: Expedia vs. Priceline – Who Reigns Supreme?
While we have a slight preference for Expedia’s interface and ChatGPT integration, in our experience, Priceline offers better deals. Plus, third-party review platforms show that Priceline offers better customer service. We recommend Priceline for these reasons.
Regardless of which booking site you choose, it’s important to break your routine and get away. Both travel sites make it easy to piece together the puzzle in planning your trip. They also offer discounted pricing, which adds up to a win-win situation.