PRSA members are being advised by staffers that rooms are still available at “discounted” prices at the Washington Hilton where the annual conference will take place Oct. 16-19.

Reservation clerks explain that the $239 rate is $20 off the usual rate of $259.

But those who press for a further cut will be offered a room at $99 as long as they put it on a credit card and agree it can’t be cancelled.

The availability of rooms at the Hilton at this late date indicates that conference attendance might be down from previous years.

Member rate for full conference registration is $1,275. This is a $480 increase from the $795 rate for the 2001 conference. It is not much of an increase over a ten year period but $1,275 is a hefty sum considering the state of the economy.

The $99 rate offered by Hilton matches the rate for that hotel on , a wholesaler of hotel rooms. Hotels.com says it provides “price match guarantee” and that it “doesn’t charge cancellation fees.”

Also $99 via hotels.com is the nearby Churchill Washington. The Courtyard by Marriott Washington, 25 yards distant, is $109. These are weekend rates. Prices for the hotels rise starting Sunday.