Visit Britain promises fair pricing in 2012
Olympics next year will not push prices through the roof
VisitBritain, the UK’s tourism board said that the cost of visiting the UK during the 2012 London Olympics will not go through the roof.
Chris Foy, head of the 2012 Games Unit at VisitBritain, was in the UAE to talk to travel agents about the upcoming Olympic Games at a series of workshops organised by the tourism board.
Foy said 600 hotels had so far signed up to Visit Britain’s ‘Fair Pricing & Practice Charter’ — a voluntary charter through which businesses will promise to offer a “fair deal’ to visitors during the Olympics.
“This is something no World Cup or Olympic host has tried before,” explained Foy. “Prices do tend to go up when there is a big sporting event, it happened during the World Cup in South Africa last summer. But we’ve been talking to people from South Africa and people from Canada [which hosted the Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympics] and their advice to hotels in the UK has been to think about the next ten years. Think about the pricing and the marketing, and I think that’s a great message to pass on.
“Clearly we want to present a very positive view of Britain and while the market does tend to put prices up a bit there’s a big difference between that and a 400 / 500% increase on rates.
“The fair pricing charter is just a way for hotels and other venues of saying; we’re offering a fair deal during the Olympics. Its voluntary, it’s self-policing.
“Those who sign up get a logo. It’s early days but about 600 have signed up so far without really doing any publicity for it.”
London Olympic 2012 tickets go on sale in March and each country is allocated a certain number which will be sold either separately, or in packages by an official operator. The official ticket operator for the UAE is yet to be appointed, said Foy.
“Whoever the Olympic Committee appoints will have the exclusive rights to sell the tickets as packages. Tickets can’t be marked up but the operator can package them up. It depends on who gets the contract and how they want to operate on how they will sell the tickets,” he added.