The sacred cows of travel: user pays (and pays)

Sacred cows (Photo: Belle Jackson)
*Warning: this post contains mild ranting and mentions children*

It seems our fair country is in the midst of a tussle between ideologies of socialism and capitalism, once again.

The government sells off more energy sources to foreign countries, and we pay for exactly what we use (oh, and how we pays). Yet at the same time, it’s setting up the National Disability Insurance Scheme, which has its principles in the idea that society looks after all its members – as one commentator said recently, some members of our society want to have a shower more than twice a week…

Back in travel, with the increase of Tiger Airways and the arrival of Scoot, and the growing tightness of Jetstar, we’re becoming accustomed to paying for everything from seat allocations to food. And while infants once flew free, we’re now being charged for the luxury of those babies sitting on our laps in the low-cost carriers. I forecast this will extend to the financially strapped so-called full-service airlines before too long. Don’t tell me it’s not on their financial planners’ whiteboards.

So it should come as no surprise to me that hotel rooms are also charging for cots. Now, Jnr Jackson and I have knocked up a few miles already, even though she’s still under the magical 24-month milestone, when she gets to start paying at least 25 percent for her airline seat. We’ve messed up some of the best hotel rooms in Fiji, Indonesia and Australia. Even so, I’m obviously still a novice at learning what the hotels and carriers can dream up to charge us.
I suspect this learning curve will continue, and the direction is skyward.


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