Fair or unfair? Consumer opinion on dynamic pricing in 2024
June 12th, 2024, Kineree Shah

Fair or unfair? Consumer opinion on dynamic pricing in 2024

Dynamic pricing is a method where prices change based on demand, time, or season. Companies like Ticketmaster and Uber have long used sophisticated algorithms to adjust prices based on demand, and movie theater chains have started implementing surge pricing strategies as well. But do consumers think these practices are fair?

In a new YouGov survey across 17 markets, adults were asked about their views on the fairness of dynamic pricing for movie theaters, theme parks, sporting events, and live concerts. The results showed mixed opinions. On average, two in five adults found dynamic pricing fair for movie theaters. For theme parks, 38% thought it was fair and sporting events had 35% in. Live concerts had the lowest support, with a third finding it fair and half finding it unfair (49%).

Live concerts

Live concerts are a popular activity, but dynamic pricing here seems to be the least favored. Indonesia and Hong Kong have the highest percentage of people who think it’s fair, with 54% and 52%, respectively. However, in countries like Britain and Canada, the majority find it unfair, with 64% and 63% respectively. The perception of fairness varies significantly, showing cultural differences in how pricing strategies are received.

Theme parks

Theme parks also show varied opinions on dynamic pricing. In Indonesia, 69% of people think it is a fair practice the highest among the surveyed markets. Hong Kong and the UAE also show a majority in favor, with 57% and 53% respectively. On the other hand, Britain, Canada, Australia, the US, France and Spain have more than half of consumers (51-57%) considering it unfair, showing that many people in these regions prefer stable pricing.

Sporting events

Sporting events also reveal mixed feelings. The UAE and Indonesia show a higher acceptance, with 60% and 62% respectively. Conversely, GB and Canada have a strong majority finding it unfair, with 58% in both countries. This suggests that in some markets, fans may be more flexible with pricing changes, while in others, they prefer consistency.

Movie theaters

Movie theaters have similar trends. In Indonesia, 64% find dynamic pricing fair, and Hong Kong follows with 63%. However, in Britain, France, Spain Canada, 60% and 57% of consumers think it is unfair. This indicates a preference for predictable pricing in these regions, despite the benefits dynamic pricing can offer during peak times.

Overall, the acceptance of dynamic pricing varies widely across different regions and services. While some markets show a higher tolerance for it, others clearly prefer stable and predictable pricing models. This highlights the importance of understanding local consumer preferences when implementing dynamic pricing strategies.

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Methodology: YouGov Surveys: Serviced provide quick survey results from nationally representative or targeted audiences in multiple markets. The data is based on surveys of adults aged 18+ years in 17 markets with sample sizes varying between 511 and 2054 for each market. All surveys were conducted online in April 2023. Data from each market uses a nationally representative sample apart from Mexico and India, which use urban representative samples, and Indonesia and Hong Kong, which use online representative samples.