Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Moneyball Revisited

This would cost $60 in Disney World

In Episode 41, Kip and I discussed different ways to analyze the money value of time while down at the World.  Kip had a very complicated spreadsheet which was based heavily on the cost of park tickets.  His system did a neat job of analyzing what moments in the parks cost, especially waiting in lines.

My system focused heavily sunk costs.  All capital costs would be added up.  These include hotel, airfare, and park tickets.  Let's look at some real numbers from my September 2011 trip.

Airfare              $434.10
Annual Pass      $552.72*
Car Rental        $260.56
Beach Club      $1,800.00

The grand total for the above is $3,047.40.**  The next step would be to plug the grand total into the following forumula:

[Grand Total/(Number of trip days X 16)]/Number of travelers = Time Value Per Person

I use a multiplier of 16 because that it is roughly how many waking hours someone would have down there.  I suppose that it would be possible to be even more precise here, but I leave that to the reader/listener.  For my trip, the time value per person was $19.05/hr.  This begs the following question:  In what possible way is this useful?

Let's  look at the following scenario.  Many people, myself included, like to shop at Walmart or a grocery store to pick up some necessities for their trips.  Could be anything from bottled water to a baby stroller.  Let's look at bottled water.  Per Google maps, the Walmart closest to the Beach Club is on Vineland Dive and about 13 minutes away.  Let's call it 30 minutes round trip to cover parking.  Since it's a Super Walmart, there is no way that you can be out of there in less than 15 minutes.  Door-to-door for the whole trip would be about 45 minutes.  The cost of this trip would be $14.29.  A 24 pack of Poland Spring costs about $4.  Add the two together and you get $18.29.  Bought individually in the World, the same quantity would cost $60.***

I hope this example helps.  I'll be sure to figure out the numbers for my next trip and share some more at that time. 

*I'm using my wife's AP, which I purchased for the trip.  I had purchased one formyself on a previous trip.
**Holy bankruptcy Batman!
***Holy highway robbery!  I know there are other options for water (i.e. the Hess station), but I'm just trying to illustrate an example with a practical explanation.  For example, it may make more sense to stay on property for a marked up toothbrush rather than run to RiteAid to save a couple of bucks.

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