OPINION: Airlines cashing in as fans rush to NRL Grand Final

AIRLINES are cashing in on the influx of rugby league fans keen to go down for the NRL Grand Final.

And hasn't it caused a stink?

In a week when every Queenslander should be as happy as ever that we, once again, get to rub our southern cousins' rugby league noses in the dirt, the mood has been soured by the big bad plane companies.

But why? Call me a capitalist, but aren't they really allowed to charge as much as they want?

Yes, it's sad that some people can't afford the trip down.

Yes, it's sad that such an historic occasion for Queensland sport will be happening with more New South Welshmen to watch it live.

And yes, it's sad that in the week leading up to said historic occasion, we're talking more about historic airline prices instead.

But is it really the mature thing to do to blame the airlines for all of the woes of the world?

I mean, gee, there are a lot of things in the world that make me sad. That doesn't mean they're all wrong.

The last nine seasons that haven't had either the Broncos or the Cowboys in the Grand Final weren't ones for the positive memory bank.

And, rather appropriately, the "insufficient funds" screen on an ATM is hardly something to write home about.

Unless, of course, you are writing home pleading Mum and Dad for "just one more loan".

Sometimes life sucks.

But as sad as it can get us, sometimes we just need to swallow life as the disgusting oyster it is.

An airline company is a business.

A business's job is to make money.

Making money requires charging - well, er - money.

So, what exactly is the problem here?

For the record, I'm not implying I agree with these airline companies and their money-making strategies.

To the highly skilled and experienced businessman such as myself (I once sold over 100 lunches in a primary school sausage sizzle), it seems a better strategy to have customers actually wanting to use your product.

But hey, that's just me.

Put that disagreement aside, however, and it's hard to find anything these fund-thirsting corporations are actually doing wrong.

In their minds, this is the best way to nudge up that bottom line.

And with my level of business expertise in mind, who the flip am I to argue?

I'm also not saying these airline companies shouldn't be wary.

The last time a business abused its monopoly over an entire industry, someone decided Uber would be a good idea, and we all know how that panned out.

So, massive airline corporations: abuse consumers at your peril.

Why, just next year, when the Broncos undoubtedly meet the Cowboys in the NRL Grand Final once again, we could have Uber of the sky well and truly up and running.

I guess you could say what goes around comes around…if only in a homemade wooden plane propelled by a desktop fan which, according to your trusty Uber driver is "perfectly safe, honest".

Still, the fact remains: if customers can't afford something, they can't buy it.

Every time I look at my Astra I wish it was a Porsche; that doesn't mean they should lower the price of Porsches.

Come to that, it'd still probably be a cheaper way of getting to the Grand Final.


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