Launched in late 2011, BackBid.com is a booking site that pits hotel against hotel to gain a client’s business—in the end helping the consumer to win out above all. Here’s how it works: Users book a room and post the details to BackBid.com. From there, other hotels in the area can outbid the current booking, offering lower rates or room upgrades and more amenities. Users can then accept one of the offers and rebook at the competing hotel. The model offers hotels an opportunity to fill empty beds without resorting to heavy discounting—which could ultimately cheapen the brand’s image. Instead, hotels can make savvy travelers feel like VIPs by offering a seemingly personalized discount package. But it’s a potential catch-22, since those beds might be empty due to would-be guests defecting to competitors with better bids. —Jessica Vaughn

Image credit: backbid.com