How to Protect Your Computer from Airlines and Hotels That Snoop on You

Dynamic pricing is a little-known fact in today’s online shopping world. When you visit a website – especially a hotel or airline – your past searches and preferences might dictate the price you see pop up for a room or a flight.

It’s all because of algorithms, which in some ways run our lives these days. Many things about algorithms help the world – increasing search result accuracy, or calculating the likelihood of weather patterns, for example – but there are sinister elements to such easily manipulated frameworks.

Your search history, what you’ve looked at, previously bought, and even what kind of computer you have might all help dictate a price for you at airlines and hotels, especially those booked by services like Orbitz.

There are ways, however, to get around this. You can’t rely on the government – there have been no moves whatsoever from Congress or governmental agencies to put a cap on or regulate dynamic pricing practices at all. It’s up to you to protect yourself and your information.

First and foremost, use the vendor directly to book your travel plans. For example, Red Bank Limo does not engage in dynamic pricing, so going to our website – or, if you’re skeptical, calling us – will not result in a higher fee. If you need an NJ limo service and don’t want to pay a premium because you’ve searched for luxury goods in the past, you should know that your pricing structure is safe with us! Using the vendor directly is a great way to ensure that you’re getting the most fair price.

On your computer, you can clear your cache, search history, and block cookies. If you’re on a Mac, you can go to your Safari browser and select Preferences, then Privacy, then Always Block Cookies.  Similar procedures exist on other websites. When clearing your browser history, make sure to clear all of it, and not just delete your previous day or week. On Google Chrome – PC or Mac – you’ll want to go to Settings, then Privacy, then Clear Browsing Data. All browsers have this functionality.

You can also browse “incognito” on Chrome, or “private” on most browsers. This is a great way to hide your information, but no searches are saved. If you think you’ll need to come back to something later, you need to save it as a bookmark. Additionally, you can search websites signed in as a guest, instead of using an account to sign in to a website. This might yield a lower price in some cases.

If you want to get extremely advanced, there are proxy servers and Virtual Private Networks (VPNs). For this, you have to be a tech wizard or typically pay for a service. An easier way to book your travel is simply to call. Dynamic pricing still happens in some ways, but with a human element, there’s always a better chance of getting an honest deal.

At Red Bank Limo, we will never price you on a sliding scale. Our fee schedule is static, and we provide low prices on NJ limo service. You don’t need to clear your search data – just book online or contact us by phone!