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Willingness to pay

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In behavioral economics, willingness to pay (WTP) is the maximum price at or below which a consumer will definitely buy one unit of a product.[1] This corresponds to the standard economic view of a consumer reservation price. Some researchers, however, conceptualize WTP as a range.

According to the constructed preference view, consumer willingness to pay is a context-sensitive construct; that is, a consumer's WTP for a product depends on the concrete decision context. For example, consumers tend to be willing to pay more for a soft drink in a luxury hotel resort in comparison to a beach bar or a local retail store.

Experimental context[edit]

In laboratory experiments auctions are conducted, a premise of the experiment is often that "bid = WTP".[2]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Varian, Hal R. (1992), Microeconomic Analysis, Vol. 3. New York: W. W. Norton.
  2. ^ Bernard Ruffieux; Laurent Muller (May 2011). "Do price-tags influence consumers' willingness to pay? On the external validity of using auctions for measuring value Article". Experimental Economics. doi:10.1007/s10683-010-9262-4.

Further reading[edit]