Diwali Shopping-Be a Smart Shopper

21/10/2011 16:04

The Consumer Council of Fiji urges all consumers to be vigilant while doing Diwali shopping this weekend.

Given the current challenging times, the Council would like to see consumers exercising their rightsand responsibilities while shopping. Having a planned shopping list avoids unnecessary spending and helps one to stay within the allocated budget.

It is important for consumers to be vigilant when trying to take advantage of specials and bargainsduring the festive season. In the hype of shopping for clothes, food, gifts, firecrackers ordecorations, consumers often fail to exercise their consumer responsibility to choose productscarefully and spend wisely. Consequently, consumers are enticed into purchasing products that maybe a bargain but of poor quality, old stock, expired or defective.

Consumers further fail to ask necessary questions particularly when buying items on credit.Clarifications on product guarantees, after sales service, interest rate, availability of spare parts andreturn policy if the product is defective should be sought before purchase. Many traders also fail toissue receipts as proof of purchase to consumers. Hence, when consumers face problems pertainingto their purchase, it becomes difficult for the Council to assist them in seeking redress. The Councilurges consumers to double check and keep their Diwali shopping receipts.

With a vide variety of goods to choose from, consumers will be tempted to purchase items that theymay not need or end up buying at a higher price. The Council therefore urges shoppers to practicecomparative shopping whereby they should be moving around to see the best available price in themarket. This would be very helpful especially when buying dairy products.

A smart consumer is a responsible consumer.