This e-mail arrived in the ValueIreland.com inbox in the past couple of weeks, detailing an issue that we’re all familiar with at this stage:
I was in Marks and Spencers Blanchardstown today – to get a dressing gown for someone. The price tag was €55, over a price of £35. There is no way I would pay this charge up. After querying this with a staff person, she advised me to complain saying the staff themselves thought the sterling – euro rate was a rip-off! She gave me a number to ring but when I tried it, it is out of service.
So I’m venting my frustration here! Have you any advice who I can complain to in M&S? It looks like all the pressure and publicity on M&S (and maybe other retailers like them) isn’t having much effect. Is it all hot air from the govt? All bark and no bite?
I took a photo of price tag and feel like sending it to a media outlet somewhere (and ideas?) – naming and shaming might be the only thing that works.
As per my normal response to this kind of e-mail, there’s not really a whole lot that we as individuals can do, and any efforts at a more sustained united approach (such as the Q102 Ignore that Store campaign) simply fizzle out due to lack of interest from most except for a small few concientious consumers.
Unfortunately, though many people are experiencing the same issues as you have highlighted here, there’s not a whole lot we as individual consumers can do except for not shopping in stores where we think we’re being ripped off.
The fact that these shops continue to have these massive euro vs sterling price differences means that there are still enough people in the country willing to spend the asking money, ignoring the massive price gap.
All the stores involved in this sterling conversion ripoff have been repeatedly named and shamed in all sorts of media, yet the practice continues.
I’ll publish your experience on the website (leaving out your personal details) to draw others attention to the issue.
I’m sorry I can’t be any more positive on this, but this has been an issue for nearly 18 months at this stage, yet any negative coverage is ignored by the stores and mostly ignored by the shoppers who still spend money in the offending stores.