Monday, 18 November 2013

Testing mini-break shopping and considering the options

The wonders of the web and absentmindedness of those who provide visibility of pricing on it never cease to amaze me.

I wanted to have a quick break linked with returning my son to his student flat in Edinburgh. A quick search found very attractive accommodation which suited us very well on Visit Scotland's website. Visit Scotland revealed a price of £x for four nights in a family room with our 16 year old daughter. However, trying to book I was redirected from Visit Scotland to the accommodation provider's own site. Unfortunately, that booking portal had the inconsistency of a maximum age of 15 for a child. Nevertheless, the websites both yielded the same price. I despatched a quick email to the accommodation to confirm availability but was offered a rate 24% higher than both Visit Scotland and the provider's own site.

Naturally, when I asked them to check their figures against both their own and Visit Scotland's website, the price was reduced.

There was always a slim chance I would be able to beat the web price through the email but why on earth would they price dearer?

Nevertheless, we had a great break but, much as I have a fondness for Scotland and my assumed historical roots, by way of price comparison, is there not something wrong when I can book a mini-break in Berlin, flying from Dublin and staying in a really good hotel, significantly cheaper than a car-ferry from Northern Ireland to a guest house in Scotland?

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