Are consumers being short changed?

Author : teriann

I love to shop.  My idea of a good time is to have the means by which to go shopping and buy quality items at a lower price.  As result of my interest in this activity I have noticed a lot of disturbing trends.

Sales or not?

I have been enticed in stores with glaring signs that state: ‘Half off’ or ‘Big Sale’, only to be greatly disappointed at the dismal offerings. The sales racks usually have items that are soiled or have extremely big or small sizes.  I realized very quickly that the signs were simply used as a lure and did not accurately reflect a great buy.

One dress store in particular had a sign that read ‘BOGO’ for further clarity under the sign in smaller print read the second item must be of lesser value than the first item.  I initially assumed that meant if I buy one item then I would get the second item free. However, after bringing it to the attention of the sales clerk, I was informed that the sign meant that if you bought one item then you would only pay half off the price of the second item.

Of course it was still a sale so I began browsing through the selections. I found that the sizes were either very small or very large.  It made choosing an item very difficult. Finally after a whole lot of searching I found a blouse that I liked. After determining that it was suitable I made my way to the counter.


The sales clerk examined the item and discovered it had on two price tags. I tactfully informed her that I would be paying the lesser price as two prices suggested a choice.  My attempts at humour were not welcomed and she insisted that the higher price was correct. To make matters worse, she seemed to discard any sense of courtesy as she pushed the item in a bag.

Sorely disappointed at how the matter was being handled, I suggested that she consult with the manager about the price of the item.  When she reluctantly did so, the manager confirmed that the lower price was correct and apologized for the confusion.

Lessons learnt

Well what did I learn from this shopping trip? First always ask questions. If I hadn’t asked questions I would not have known the terms of the sale nor would I have paid the lower amount for the item.

Secondly it also would be great if businesses were to recognize the importance of training their staff to treat their customers with respect and ensure that they get treated fairly.

After all a happy customer is a repeat customer!

What’s your take? Let me hear from you!

Teri Ann Renee Paisley

Gleaner online writer

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