One of the main frustrations I'm experiencing during travel planning is the inability to have access to the same data that I could get if I went, e.g. to the ticket window in Amsterdam's Central Station. I feel sure that if I walked up to the ticket help window and asked for the fare on a train from Amsterdam to Madrid, they could/would (?) simply look it up. But I can't do that on the Web.
Instead I get a message advising me to buy a eurail pass.
This, coupled with the insane pricing structure under which I am forced to buy a round-trip ticket on the airline because it's about a third of the price of a one-way ticket has me questioning just how effective is our access to these systems.
It reminds me of a situation many years ago when the wholesale price of just about anything was a closely guarded secret - presumably for fear that if a retail customer knew what it was she would be very dissatisfied with the profit system.