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a blog by Chris Barrow

The Right Price

Two similarly interesting experiences during our recent holiday, that illustrate an important message about how we set our prices.

On 22nd January we moored off The Bitter End Yacht Club on Virgin Gorda, BVI.

This is a thousand dollar a night resort close to Branson’s Necker Island, providing a host of water sports facilities free of charge for residents on an all-inclusive package.

For non-members (like us) there is the chance to enjoy the same water sports at a price.

During our previous two visits, we have taken an afternoon to play with their Hobie Cats.

This time, they want to charge us $80.00 per vessel for an hour.

As you can see, this time we passed by and it seems that many took the same view.

Later that day, we took our dinghy over the bay to nearby Prickly Pear Island, where there is a long, sandy beach that provides excellent swimming and sunbathing.

Landing at a ramshackle jetty we walk into a dilapidated beach bar, where a sullen-faced lady announces “$10 for a lounger” with all the bonhomie of a traffic warden. Perhaps she was, in fact, the person the island was named after?

One look at the state of the bar is enough to convince us that our stay will be short and I’ll be damned if I’ll sit on one of her blasted loungers.

Again, the fact that we are the only people there for an hour indicates that her particular version of customer service has had the desired effect.

I want to say right now that our journey around the BVI was filled with people happy in their work and, although prices are certainly higher than in previous years, most places we visited represented good value for money, whether fine dining at Scaramouche in Soper’s Hole or grabbing an occasional plate of fries.

Strange indeed that in one day we see two extremes:

  1. pricing yourself so high as to deter casual users

  2. pricing yourself too highly when there is no value delivered

The photos demonstrate one indisputable fact – that the ultimate decision rests with the consumer, who will vote with their feet if you get your pricing wrong.

Your prerogative is to choose the methodology for your own pricing – the challenge is to get it right.

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