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Dietary Tax (oops supplement) and more

It`s been all quiet I `m afraid on the blog front, busy end of season ,loads of fresh snow, a girls park day, and planning ahead for Winetr 2014.

Over the past couple of weeks we have been receiving more and more enquiries for next winter, so I have been focusing on next years prices, offers, and packages. This is to  ensure that we are constantly striving to offer the best service at the best rate,  I  have spent a lot of time checking out what others do, and especially the larger tour operators in the mid-market area, our biggest competitor.  From this research I was shocked to see supplements that can add over £100pp to the base price of your holiday.

Having worked in the ski industry and tourism industry for over 10 years I still don`t fully understand the whole additional supplements, so I have decided to write down in black and white a few of the most common ones to try and understand more and give an insight to people who may not understand either.

ROOM SUPPLEMENTS

First up,  room supplements, ok so some are easy to understand, for example, the chalet has 4 rooms, 2 rooms have an en-suite Shower & WC, 1 room has and ensuite bath & WC, and 1 room doesn`t have an en-suite.  You book a room in this chalet, and all 4 rooms are free and you want the best room, say with bath & WC so the company start with a base price then you pay for what is in effect an upgrade, like you would in a hotel.

Now,  you are a group of 8 looking to take the whole chalet, you all know what you are getting so why  add the supplements, this was the one that would confuse me and confuse clients when I worked in ski sales.  I do understand that someone in the party will get the Bath & wc , some shower & wc and 2 people will end up without an en-suite, but they will all fight it out between themselves.  Surely on sole occupancy the operator should just charge the base rate X 8, I always thought of this supplement as an unfair one really, just out there for extra revenue possibly? .

FLIGHT SUPPLEMENTS

Next up is the flight supplements, now this is easy, the supplements are based on the airport taxes, all flights start at the same base price then different airports will have higher tax rates and charges.  BUT this isn`t just the case, for example, you have 2 flights departing Manchester to Geneva, one flight leaves at 6.45am and the other leaves at 11.30am,  the 11.30 would probably be the most popular as it is at a reasonable hour and probably preferred so the supplement on that will be higher to try and persuade people to book the earlier flight with a cheaper supplement.

SINGLE SUPPLEMENTS

A supplement that tends to annoy single travellers is the Single Person Supplement, now this I do understand, if the traveller is taking a room that sleeps 2 or more, the spare bed could be sold and the Chalet  / tour company, thus  potentially missing out on another paying guest.  Single supplements vary greatly between company to company, some charge a flat rate like us of £200pp (off peak dates) £250 (mid peak dates) and no discount at peak dates,  others however charge upto 75% of the standard rate low & mid season dates and like us 100% during peak dates.  As mentioned this is when taking a room designed to sleep more than one person.  The charge I don`t understand is when the supplement for a single traveller is added when taking a single room, this doesn`t happen very often anymore, although I remember in 2003 working for an operator who would charge the supplement for a single traveller in a single room (sometimes though you may not be charged an actual supplement but the single room can be more expensive) .  When I questioned the Resort Manager, after being questioned myself I was told that the supplement covered the service that the guest received as the room would still be serviced by 2 chalet hosts, and at dinner te guest would still be served by 2 chalet hosts ? ? WHAT? even now writing this down in black and white is makes zero sense, but that was how it was and very occasionally how it is now.

DIETARY SUPPLEMENT ? this is a new one !

And here is the new supplement I discovered ! ......... The dietary requirement supplement, yes you read that right, if you are a meat eater, or a normal vegetarian then you are not charged a supplement, but what if you have a dairy intolerance, or a are a celiac, have a gluten intolerance, or you are a vegan ? Well you can add £35 to the cost of your holiday.  £35 appears to be penalising guests for what could be a medical condition.  I would understand this supplement if it was to cost more to buy in extra food of special foods, but it doesn`t, in fact if you are gluten free, dairy free or vegan the cost per head could work out less, Gluten free  won`t eat the cakes or bread, dairy free won`t eat your cheese board, milk, yogurts etc, and vegans ? well they won`t eat meat, and dairy products, so therefore saving on the chalet budget.   And  the extra charge isn`t for the extra work the chalet staff may have to do in cooking more than one meal, as that £35 will not be passed on in extra wages ! plus if the chalet chef cannot cope with more than one variation of a meal then he / she should not be working in a chalet cooking your meals.

Aktivexperience don`t charge for room supplements and we certainly do not charge a dietary requirement supplement , but as mentioned I do understand why some supplements are charged, it`s not just about getting more revenue , there are extra charges placed in resort and by external companies such as airports & airlines.

One thing that I did realise is that if you want to pay the price you first see, the base price with no supplements, smaller independents are the way forward, plus if there are any extras their websites are a lot easier to navigate and understand, plus as many do not include flights you can save on flight supplements by booking your own from your own regional airport at a time that best suits your needs.

 

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AktivExperience · 1668 days ago
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AktivExperience
Flexible skiing & snowboarding in Meribel
30.03.2013 (1668 days ago)
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Dietary Tax (oops supplement) and more