David Weston of the Bed & Breakfast Association 'fights the corner' for this £2 billion 'cottage industry'

Wednesday, 9 March 2011

'Single occupancy supplements' - the arguments continue

A letter appeared in The Times a few days ago saying that 'single occupancy supplements' were an "outrageous imposition", and calling for them to be "banned".
I wrote a letter in Monday's Times (7 March) explaining how in most cases, far from a supplement, B&Bs and hotels in fact discount the room for single travellers already - the "supplement" only seems to appear if double rooms are priced "per person" and an assumption is made that anyone should pay that price, whether or not sharing.
The important thing is that the basis quoted should be clear, transparent and unambiguous.
It amazes me what strong feelings the "single supplement" arouses - in the online version of The Times letters page, there are several posts still misunderstanding my point, and accusing B&Bs of "singling people out", wanting to charge the maximum for doing the minimum, being "the Basil Fawlty Liberation Front", "sophistry", and more.
The original letter writer I had replied to, and two others, even said that they thought all prices should be on a simple "per room" basis, the same for all - so it seems that a single paying the same as a couple would pay is preferable to getting a discounted room which happens to be more than half the double price!
If anyone has any ideas how we can make people understand the simple facts and practicalities of this, please let me know.