Why a Competitive Aviation Industry is Great for Consumers
I may have a friend who works for one specific airline, but I’m all too grateful that there are many other airlines competing for the same air routes and for the same customers. Competition is good in any industry, but particularly more so in the air travel industry with consumers ultimately being the main beneficiaries.
Fair pricing regulation
At the end of the day anyone who goes into business does so to maximise profits. If left unchecked, many of the businesses we patronise would have probably charged their customers a lot more than what they currently do, but that’s what competition does – it makes for somewhat of a default regulator of the prices we have to pay for things like plane tickets and everything else to do with travel, really. In fact, many aviation companies will even have legal staff, like those from Sidley Austin for instance, on hand to ensure they are keeping within the regulated pricing boundaries and the like.
This built-in price regulation mechanism is effective enough, but cannot function all on its own. Sure, consumers will tend to choose the service provider offering the best service at the cheapest price, but without the likes of discount flight and travel booking platforms such as Opodo, prospective travellers would still be left with a lot of work to do in scouring through the many offers and then ultimately trying to settle for that offer which brings together great service and competitive pricing. You only have to look at the dynamics surrounding Opodo’s awards to fully understand just how much of a mission it would otherwise be, having to call up each and every airline in addition to each and every hotel, get a quotation and then compare all the options you’ve gathered.
We get many more options to choose from
Sometimes, most times actually, it’s not even about the price. Those of us travellers who strive to travel as much as we can love nothing more than having many options to choose from and sometimes we’re willing to splurge on some of the finer things which account for what many people would refer to as luxury travel. It’s nice to be able to sleep in a five-star hotel for a week or so, once in a while in complement to say sleeping on a bed in a dormitory in some hostel, for example. And that’s just another way through which competition benefits the consumer.
If you’ve ever had the pleasure of experiencing a business class flight, you’ll be well aware of the fact that it’s a lot like hanging out in a five-star hotel in the sky, with the extensible seat that can effectively turn into a bed along with what is nothing short of a five-star restaurant-in-the-sky experience with gourmet meals and flight attendants who double up as on-call waiters, barmen, etc. A competitive aviation industry affords you the liberty to choose from all of these different experiences, some of which are bundled up, which could mean that you get the whole luxury travel experience including business or first class flights, a private shuttle service to and from the airport and lodging at a five star hotel proper once you reach your destination.
All of the service providers and carriers are competing on these fronts, wherever they fly the same air routes of course, otherwise they’re still competing for customer loyalty even if they may be flying different routes.
Making sure you get maximum benefits
Now it’s all good and well knowing about all these wonderful things competition in the aviation industry does for the consumer, but if you’re to benefit from it all personally, you have to be proactive.
Make sure to sign up for any and all programmes which are equivalent to the frequent flyer programme of the airline you’re using, even if you’ve booked through platforms such as Opodo. Trust me, these miles can accumulate very quickly and before long you’ll be able to redeem them for something that can save you quite a bit of money, from a new, high-quality carry-on bag to an extra ticket or a flight class upgrade.
Airlines competing on the frequent flyer programmes front make for just another way through which consumers ultimately benefit.