Peter Delmar – Greed killing our World Cup prospects

Following on from my Ashanti Lodge post (and their manager’s “charmless reply“), this from Peter Delmar in The Times yesterday:

You can stay at the two-star B&B for under R600 a night per room, including breakfast, which is about as much as it’s worth. But, the proprietor told me, she was doubling the price for the World Cup.

“Oh,” was all I managed to say in response. I wanted to ask: “Why?”

Why double the price just because of the World Cup? Did she have any bookings for the soccer? Not yet.

Just about everyone else is up to the same jiggery-pokery: jostling with their snout in the trough to milk fans, who are all supposedly as rich as Croesus, for six weeks or so. And now their chickens are coming home to roost. We’ve realised with a nasty shock that even the Germans, the richest soccer fans in the world, can’t afford us.

The greed-mongers are not only shooting themselves in the foot, they’re shooting the poorest of the poor as well.

None of us particularly likes our airline industry and it hardly came as a surprise to learn it was being investigated for collusion on pricing during the World Cup. The only real surprise was that it took our somnambulant competition authorities so long to twig to what was going on.

I’ve been to a few world cups in my time. Admittedly, none of them were soccer-related, but at all of them the profiteering was kept within limits. Or wasn’t even noticeable. But not South Africa 2010, it seems.

It’s not too late to tell the world: “Sorry, we got a bit carried away there for a moment and thought you okes were much richer than you really are.

Good points, good sense.

Are you reading, Sue?