Population Statistic: Read. React. Repeat.
Wednesday, April 16, 2021

I’m here at JFK Airport, just waiting to board my flight to Tampa. I’ll be vacationing for the next few days in the ol’ Bay area, with my chief goal being no loftier than achieving copious sunburn.

But, despite being bored out of my mind just sitting here (and blogging via the terminal’s wi-fi, natch), I’m not so sure I need to leave for the Sunshine State. In fact, with the new Department of Transportation compensation rules that mandate double the fare price repayment for bumped flights (up to a maximum of $800), I’m almost hoping to get knocked off this trip.


I suppose some downtime trumps the eight hundred bones. I’ve had to delay this vacation once already, so I’m way overdue for a recharge. But the cash compensation would be nice.

I will, of course, not be taking a vacation from blogging. I’ve even got my notebook computer with me — a decision I’m somewhat regretting as I lug it around. Too late to do anything about it now.

by Costa Tsiokos, Wed 04/16/2008 03:24:35 PM
Category: General
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American retail isn’t accustomed to having most in-store customers dicker over the number on an item’s pricetag. But now that both the New York Times and Los Angeles Times have reported on Web-researching consumers attempting (and succeeding) in talking down the price on in-store items ranging from HDTVs to jeans, I’m sure the trend will only accelerate.

A big part of it is stigma: The past couple of generations equated the art of haggling with the art of being cheap. Generally, it’s been the marked price, take it or leave it. The leveling power of ecommerce (notably eBay’s auction system, although I think it’s more the overall volume discounting that Amazon and others have perfected) have gone a long way toward erasing the negative association. A softening economy is the other ingredient.

I’m not sure I’ve got the gumption or the patience to partake. Part of the convenience of going to a brick-and-mortar outlet is the ability to purchase the item and walk out with it — no delays due to shipping or bidding action. Standing around trying to talk down some semi-interested salesperson only prolongs the process. If it’s a big-ticket item (let’s say nearly a grand and up), then maybe. Otherwise, I don’t see doing it.

by Costa Tsiokos, Wed 04/16/2008 03:03:15 PM
Category: Business, Society
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