How To

How location data is used to manipulate airfare and car rental prices – How to use it in your favor

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Posted By Parveen

Web-based shopping and booking have come as a boon for millions of people who are always jostling with time and multitasking to manage life. A majority of web users may actually be oblivious to the fact that they end up paying a higher amount to various companies online because of their locations. This is the case with myriads of services that can be bought or booked online. Examples include airfare, music subscription services, video on demand and many more. The concept is what service providers call dynamic pricing. However, the difference can sometimes be incredibly high.

Ways to beat the dynamic pricing policy of companies when booking or buying things/services online

The business selling products and service online have their reasons to justify dynamic pricing, but it is not always acceptable to the buyers. You may find it unfair that the companies discriminate the buyers based on location and socioeconomic factors.  While you cannot do anything directly to make the businesses change their policies- there are workarounds to bypass the differential pricing policies! You can use a few tricks to manipulate the location-based pricing of online service providers to your advantage.

Listed below are the most effective ways to bypass the dynamic pricing policy of various companies selling services/products online:

Deactivate the third-party cookie tracking

A majority of web users keep the cookies enabled in their web browsers by default. This is what the retailers and advertisers use to understand the browsing and buying pattern of those users. They use the cookies to send the users suitable offers online later. However, the data collected is also used to decide the ultimate pricing by various companies. So, you can disable third-party cookies in the browser you use.

Try using a different browser

While all browsers have settings to disable third-party cookies and send a request to sites for not tracking users, the efficacy is not the same. Sometimes, a few retailers may charge mobile web browsers more than desktop browser users for the same services. You may also try and see if the same services are being charged differently from the same location from different devices.

Use private mode and clear the cookies

You can try clearing the cookies from the browser and start browsing afresh to beat the dynamic pricing. It would be also helpful if you use the private mode of the web browser and then the cookies cannot track your whereabouts as well. In different web browsers, the name may vary a little such as in private and incognito etc.

Turn off location tracking

Nowadays, mobile web access devices and computers have a location tracking option either through hardware or software. You can disable the option before you begin browsing in your device. This will make it hard for the companies to locate your position and you can skip dynamic pricing.

Use a VPN service

This can be your best option to beat dynamic pricing without breaking a sweat! VPN services are the best option to hide your real IP address and location online.  There are plenty of VPN services and they can be used to hide your location from the websites and online retailers easily. You can pick from top desktop and mobile VPN apps. Some of these apps can also be used for free- albeit with certain limitations. To get the best results you can use various VPN servers when buying or booking products from brands located in different countries.

Summing it up

You can try these measures to beat the practice of companies using dynamic pricing. You may be able to get reasonable results.

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