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Swedish airports to introduce price cap on food

Becky Waterton
Becky Waterton - [email protected]
Swedish airports to introduce price cap on food
How much would you be willing to pay for a prawn sandwich at an airport? Photo: Björn Larsson Rosvall/TT/Scanpix

Sweden is rolling out a restaurant price cap at its main airports, in an effort to avoid customers being charged extortionate amounts for a quick pre-boarding lunch.

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Swedavia runs ten airports in Sweden, including Arlanda, Landvetter and Malmö near the country's three biggest cities, and is set to introduce the price cap on restaurants and shops across all ten airports “between now and 2025,” press officer Ellen Laurin told The Local.

The issue of expensive airport food made headlines earlier this month after SEB bank senior economist Johan Javeus shared a picture on X (formerly known as Twitter) of an "extremely ordinary prawn sandwich and a normal beer" he bought at Landvetter for an eye-watering 422 kronor (around 36 euros or 38 dollars).

An analysis by local newspaper Härryda-Posten later revealed the exact breakdown of the receipt: 269 kronor for the prawn sandwich (which is expensive, but still in line with what you can expect to pay at an upmarket inner-city restaurant), and 153 kronor for a 600ml draft beer.

It wasn’t clear when The Local contacted Swedavia whether the new price cap would only include food or if other items – such as alcoholic drinks – would be included, with Laurin referring us to a press statement due to be released this week for more details.

The price cap is part of a new strategy at Swedavia’s airports, she said, which aims to offer a wider variety of options, as well as better value for travellers.

This new strategy is already being rolled out in some airports, and will be included in future contracts with restaurants and shops at Swedavia’s airports.

“We have 120 new contracts with this new concept, which will start opening from now up until 2025,” Laurin said.

“As soon as new concepts start, this new price-cap strategy will be included.”

“Our range on offer will be altered and updated starting now. At Arlanda, this will continue all the way into 2025, and at Landvetter it will start this autumn.”

It was not immediately clear to what extent this would lower current prices at airports.

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At Arlanda, an entirely new marketplace – after security – will open this week, with the price cap in place, she said.

The head of marketing at Swedavia, Charlotte Ljunggren, told Dagens industri (Di) earlier this week that the goal of the price cap is to ensure that prices in kiosks, cafés and restaurants is no more than ten percent higher than it would be for the same product outside the airport.

Ljunggren told Di that this ten percent difference in price is due to the extra costs of running a business at an airport, such as extra scanning of products brought into the airport and security courses for staff.

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