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Price Discrimination through Refund Contracts in Airlines

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  • Escobari, Diego
  • Jindapon, Paan

Abstract

This paper shows how an airline monopoly uses refundable and non-refundable tickets to screen consumers who are uncertain about their travel. Our theoretical model predicts that the difference between these two fares diminishes as individual demand uncertainty is resolved. Using an original data set from U.S. airline markets, we find strong evidence supporting our model. Price discrimination opportunities through refund contracts decline as the departure date nears and individuals learn about their demand.

Suggested Citation

  • Escobari, Diego & Jindapon, Paan, 2014. "Price Discrimination through Refund Contracts in Airlines," MPRA Paper 53629, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  • Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:53629
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Diego Escobari, 2012. "Dynamic Pricing, Advance Sales and Aggregate Demand Learning in Airlines," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 60(4), pages 697-724, December.
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    11. Borenstein, Severin & Rose, Nancy L, 1994. "Competition and Price Dispersion in the U.S. Airline Industry," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 102(4), pages 653-683, August.
    12. Escobari, Diego, 2009. "Systematic peak-load pricing, congestion premia and demand diverting: Empirical evidence," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 103(1), pages 59-61, April.
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Alderighi, Marco & Cento, Alessandro & Piga, Claudio A., 2011. "A case study of pricing strategies in European airline markets: The London – Amsterdam route," Journal of Air Transport Management, Elsevier, vol. 17(6), pages 369-373.
    2. Alderighi, Marco & Gaggero, Alberto A & Piga, Claudio A, 2016. "The hidden side of dynamic pricing in airline markets," MPRA Paper 71674, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    3. Escobari, Diego & Rupp, Nicholas & Meskey, Joseph, 2018. "Dynamic Price Discrimination in Airlines," MPRA Paper 88078, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    4. Escobari, Diego, 2014. "Estimating dynamic demand for airlines," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 124(1), pages 26-29.
    5. Bilotkach, Volodymyr & Gorodnichenko, Yuriy & Talavera, Oleksandr, 2012. "Sensitivity of prices to demand shocks: A natural experiment in the San Francisco Bay Area," Transportation Research Part A: Policy and Practice, Elsevier, vol. 46(7), pages 1137-1151.
    6. Seongman Moon & Makoto Watanabe, 2011. "Refundability and Price: Empirical Analysis on the Airline Industry," Working Papers 1107, Research Institute for Market Economy, Sogang University.
    7. Moreno-Izquierdo, L. & Ramón-Rodríguez, A. & Perles Ribes, J., 2015. "The impact of the internet on the pricing strategies of the European low cost airlines," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 246(2), pages 651-660.
    8. repec:eee:transa:v:103:y:2017:i:c:p:198-210 is not listed on IDEAS
    9. Escobari, Diego & Rupp, Nicholas G. & Meskey, Joseph, 2018. "An Analysis of Dynamic Price Discrimination in Airlines," EconStor Open Access Articles, ZBW - German National Library of Economics.
    10. Escobari, Diego, 2017. "Airport, airline and departure time choice and substitution patterns: An empirical analysis," Transportation Research Part A: Policy and Practice, Elsevier, vol. 103(C), pages 198-210.
    11. Moreno, Luis & Ramon, Ana & Pedreño, Andrés, 2015. "The Development of Low-cost Airlines and Tourism as a Competitiveness Complementor: Effects, Evolution and Strategies," Journal of Spatial and Organizational Dynamics, CIEO-Research Centre for Spatial and Organizational Dynamics, University of Algarve, vol. 3(4), pages 262-274.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Price discrimination; Refund contracts; Airlines; Individual demand learning;

    JEL classification:

    • C23 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Single Equation Models; Single Variables - - - Models with Panel Data; Spatio-temporal Models
    • D42 - Microeconomics - - Market Structure, Pricing, and Design - - - Monopoly
    • D82 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Asymmetric and Private Information; Mechanism Design
    • L93 - Industrial Organization - - Industry Studies: Transportation and Utilities - - - Air Transportation

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