Airport retailers bent on getting most out of captive shoppers

Discussion in 'General Discussion | Travel' started by sobore, Mar 5, 2012.  |  Print Topic

  1. sobore
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    sobore Gold Member

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    http://www.canada.com/Airport+retailers+bent+getting+most+captive+shoppers/6251503/story.html

    Cafeteria. Camping ground. Transportation hub. Travellers know that airports can take on many identities.

    Now, many are taking on a new role - as classy shopping complexes, not just endless strips of newsstands, souvenir shops and fast-food outlets tucked between departure gates.

    Los Angeles International Airport plans to open a slew of new shops this year, including one by upscale L.A. boutique chain Kitson. McCarran International Airport in Las Vegas is building a mini-mall anchored by Juicy Couture, Guess and Hugo Boss. On the East Coast, New York’s John F. Kennedy International Airport has welcomed lingerie maker Victoria’s Secret.

    The emergence of airports as full-on shopping centres got its initial boost after the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks, which drastically increased the time most people spend at airports.

    http://www.canada.com/Airport+retailers+bent+getting+most+captive+shoppers/6251503/story.html
     
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  2. Gaucho
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    Gaucho Gold Member

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    With very few exceptions... shopping at airports is the best way to get ripped off. IMO, until regulators stop offering the retail end as the profit maker for airport operators, this trend will continue.
     
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  3. MSPeconomist
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    MSPeconomist Gold Member

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    I think the history suggested above is wrong. Even before 9-11, there were efforts to include lots of rather upscale stores in airports. PIT was a major example of this, with their new terminal opening shortly before 9-11. (Why someone would pay parking to shop at an airport when then could instead park for free at a mall is a different issue.) The new then NW DTW terminal was supposed to be another example, but IIRC it was scheduled to open shortly after 9-11.

    In these cases, when passenger traffic dived after 9-11, the airport merchants were in big trouble, suffered greatly, and went out of business in a number of cases. Part of the problem was that non passengers could no longer be permitted airside.

    Landside shopping will not attract passengers who usually are eager to clear security in case of problems. Nor will connecting passengers go land side unnecessarily to shop, although smokers will probably be exceptions to this. OTOH, airside shops can only be accessed by passengers with few exceptions. In addition, carry on rules limit how much stuff people can buy except at their final destination. So it seems to me that airport shopping faces some inherent dilemmas about who the customers are supposed to be.
     
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