It’s How the Market Works


So the 41-year-old set up a Facebook group called Holiday Price Increase, in which many people have shared examples of price changes.

One of the group’s members posted a link to the e-petition, which is entitled: “Stop holiday companies charging extra in school holidays”.

Okay, so I can understand his frustration. However, during the holidays there is increased demand, so prices reflect it. That is how markets work. It is not up to the state to legislate how much private companies may charge for their product or service – particularly when their costs are likely to be out of their control. I mean, how does this economic ignoramus plan to force foreign hotels and foreign-owned airlines to regulate their prices in response to the increased demand and finite availability? Oh, yeah, that’s right, he can’t. They, however, do – they put up their prices.

As it is, I like to travel outside of the school holiday period so that I can be free of school children. The lower cost is, of course, a bonus. But then, like Mr Cookson, I made a choice. I chose not to have children. This a side benefit of making that choice. Cookson made his, he now has to live with it. Too bad, no sympathy. And, no, the government should not step in and regulate the price of holidays. Fuck me, what have we come to?

Mr Cookson said the petition’s call for price regulation might not be successful but it was raising awareness and increasing the chance that holiday providers would change their policies.

Oh, my god… yet again the “raising awareness” canard gets wheeled out. Why is it that every crackpot with a harebrained idea thinks that the rest of us need to be aware of their stupidity? I have always been aware that holiday prices increase during school holiday time – probably because, from an early age I recognised the principles of supply and demand. Cookson and the other cranks who signed this petition clearly do not. And these cretins breed…. No wonder we are up shit creek.


  1. It’s more than how the market works – it’s one of the reasons why the market works.

    If prices were the same, there would be too much demand over the peak periods meaning there’d be shortages.

    It’s basic economics.

    But the only explanation in the article is the vague, “The Association of British Travel Agents (ABTA) said prices were ‘an issue of supply and demand’.” A meaningless statement to most people, no doubt included not as a counter to Cookson’s argument, but to encourage people to think the companies don’t have a valid reason for their pricing.

    The BBC choosing to run this as a story is the BBC choosing to propagate ignorance.


  2. There was a time when you could fill in a form and then take your kids out of school for a week or two during term time. This started to be discouraged at first and now you are subject to fines if you try it. We dealt with the problem by taking our family holiday over the half term in late October. However, the price problem is exacerbated by the schools no longer allowing holidays in term time.

    • I know of one single mother who happily pays the fine in respect of her young son. She still saves a fortune and the child’s education doesn’t suffer in the case of one week holiday. Kids get ill, somehow they manage to catch up. I will refrain from any comment about current standards of education…

  3. It’s the way the market works and all such governemtnal interference would, of course, be doomed to abject and utter failure.

    Alas, it is also the way our increasingly infantilised society works. It’s not a case of take the holiday you can afford (if you can afford one at all) but you are entitled to the holiday you want when you want and if you can’t afford it then that has to be due to the depradations of somebody else.

  4. It’s ignorance. Without free market pricing to ration and spread demand, it would be first come, first served. So Mr Faceache might get his fixed prices but no holiday, not least since unable to charge lower off peak prices, holiday companies, hotels, airline etc would go out of business, or of course their all the year round prices would be astronomical.

  5. As I could never afford to take a holiday in or out of term time it is not an issue I ever ran into.
    I do think however that it is indicative of society that everyone now regards foreign holidays as a right, when I was young very few people expected a holiday abroad as the norm.
    I spent 99% of my holidays with my Grandparents in Eastbourne and loved every minute of them.
    Who needs abroad with Delhi belly and sunburn anyway? 😉

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