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Don't Be Trapped By Sales 'Bargains'

Bargain-hunters preparing to launch themselves at this year’s sales are being given advice by Trading Standards officers on how to avoid being ripped off or misled.

Warwickshire Trading Standards Officers have issued a list of six basic rules to follow to avoid being taken in by offers that appear too good to be true.

And they are warning people to make sure they know their rights as consumers and what to do if things go wrong.

Unwary customers risked being trapped by adverts that side-step the law, and bargain hunters are advised to:

  • Read all it says on the sale notice or in an advertisement. A sign might read 80 per cent off from a distance, but a closer look might reveal the words 'up to'.

  • Shop around - even a 'massive reduction' doesn't mean you can't buy the same for less elsewhere.

  • Don't be fobbed off by notices such as 'no sale goods exchanged' or 'no cash refunds'. If the sale goods you buy are faulty or mis-described then you do have a claim against the trader.

  • But remember, if the product is labelled 'shop soiled' or 'marked on the sleeve' or you are given this information verbally, then this may affect your legal rights.

  • Treat 'special purchase' items with caution. If the store has imported them just for the sale, you have no way of making a price comparison.

  • Watch out for abbreviations such as ASP (after sales price) when making price comparisons.
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CWN / Politics / Warwickshire County Council / 21 Dec 00

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