Why is getting the best price for something so complicated?

The variance in pricing you can find for flights/hotels/cars by spending a few minutes shopping around & trying out various discounts is staggering. I've seen the price for the exact same thing quoted at 2, 3, even 4 times as much from place to place.

The parameters for getting the best price are endless, and maddening!!!

- Do you shop at a vendor's own site (hotel, airline, car rental), or an aggregator site like Kayak, Priceline, etc?
- Do you apply a benefits discount code from your credit card company, airline membership, the vendors's own premier club (like Hertz Gold), an automotive service like AAA, or your company's corporate discount?
- What date/time do you buy? Are they having a sale?
- on and on...

I hope +Doc Searls 's vision of  #VRM  comes true, and we (the consumer) will one day have the power instead of the vendors. I'd love to simply post "I need to be in this city on these days" and have the vendors come to me with their offers.
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