Research

I regularly carry out the research and investigations that you’re unlikely to see elsewhere. The research that I carry out is intended to be of interest and benefit to the Irish consumer by asking the questions that others don’t.

For example, ValueIreland.com was the only place that you’ll originally received a snapshot of the current state (in 2005) of electricity competition in the Irish residential market – or the lack of it.

It is also the only place where you’ll see ongoing analysis of the enormous amounts of money that Irish businesses are stealing from Irish consumers through the multiple overcharging incidences that been revealed since 2004.

And finally, contrary to the enormous credit been given to the National Consumer Agency for bringing the German retailers closer to the mainstream of Irish grocery shopping habits, it was actually ValueIreland.com who was the first to carry out a grocery price survey involving both Aldi & Lidl.

My portfolio of research articles are available below. If you have any questions on any of the information presented there, or if you have anything that you think should be investigated further, please contact me via the Contact Page.


Welcome to the ValueIreland.com Buy Irish page. On this page I’ll bring together all of the Buy Irish posts that I write here on the website, as well as providing links to other Buy Irish resources such as other websites and newspaper articles. We’ve seen a lot of focus in recent times where various people and organisations are doing there bit to try to boost the amount of purchases of Irish products, and this is my little bit.
Following on from my analysis of the call costs associated with calling 1850, 1890 and 0818 phone numbers across all phone service providers in the country, I decided to do a little analysis to try to work out the best Directory enquiries number to call. The full breakdown of the costs of calling the various National Directory Enquiries numbers from most of the mobile and landline service providers is available from these links (national or international).
Back in early 2005, it appeared to have been a very well-kept secret that on February 19th, 2005, it first became possible for you to choose who you buy your electricity from. On that date, not only were all businesses (irrespective of size) be able to choose their electricity supplier, but all home residential electricity customers would also be able to change their electricity supplier. This article researched if that was actually possible for consumers or if the promise was much greater than reality.
Overcharging revelations in Ireland today are becoming an almost weekly occurrence. And we’re always told that these “errors” are down to system errors, and maybe human error on the part of junior staff. Yet, as everyone asks, how is it that these errors are always in favour of the business, with undercharging being almost unheard of. This article in 2004 was the start of the ValueIreland.com original research into how many Irish organisations were overcharging their customers, and by how much, and how often they've been doing it.
This article on Value Ireland, Rip-Off Ireland – You Have Been Warned!, was originally inspired way back in 2004 by some online research conducted on the website. This found that 41% of Irish consumers surveyed did not check their bills before paying them. At the time, there were a number of high profile cases where banks and other companies had overcharged customers by sometimes large amounts of money, yet customers rarely noticed. This, Value Ireland believes, is the true scale of “Rip Off Ireland”. Irish consumers are regularly having money taken from them without their knowledge – stolen in effect.
Last week the National Consumer Agency published its first national comparison of grocery prices. Given that it failed to include two chains who offer what the NCA claims the Irish consumer is lacking at the moment – better value and greater price competition – www.valueireland.com is renaming it the NCA “Notional” grocery price survey. Supposedly, the NCA were only shopping for branded items but that in itself is falling into the hands of large multiples. People misguidedly seem to be willing to pay a premium for better known branded items when in a lot of cases, the lesser known brands, such as those stocked by Aldi and Lidl are just as good – and cheaper as well.
So goes the new slogan from Advance Pitstop. Actually, as we’ll show you here, shopping around actually saves you money. The new Advance advertising campaign, launched this week featuring Orlaith Rafter from Fair City, goes on to tell us, “When it’s time for a new set of tyres, I couldn’t be bothered shopping around for a quote. I know that Advance Pitstop offers fantastic value”. Should we follow their advice and make tracks straight to their door when we’re buying our new tyres?
*** I know that some of you reading this will cringe at the insurance quotations mentioned in this article, but everything is relative. My insurance situation is complicated and hence the higher costs. I still managed to save significantly by shopping around. *** My insurance was due towards the end of this month. Having, in the course of the past year put together the Value Ireland Tips on getting cheaper car insurance, and compiling the Value Ireland Motor Insurance Checklist, it was time to put all that knowledge into practice.
Via the Value Ireland Forum, it was brought to the attention of Value Ireland that the current advertising campaign for Imagine Broadband was misleading, and causing confusion for one of our visitors, and likely to confuse others also. Given our slogan of “Better purchasing decisions through better information”, Value Ireland decided to follow up and investigate.
Don’t like complaining? But you’re still unhappy with value for money, quality or service. The Value Ireland Card can help you begin to get used to letting businesses know about how you think they’ve treated you.
In the past, car insurance was one of the biggest areas of complaints when it came to allegations of “rip off Ireland”. This may become an issue again for consumers if car insurance prices increase as expected in 2009. However, it can sometimes be difficult to get good value for money on car insurances as it’s something that you HAVE to have. By it’s very nature, insurance companies will say that everyone’s case is different, and therefore, not something that will be always easy to compare.
Every week you can access this weeks grocery special offers from the grocery chains across Northern Ireland from this single handy web page. It’s not an extensive listing (yet) but on a weekly basis, sometimes monthly, the chains listed below publish their special offers on their websites in various different formats. You can use this webpage to click on any of the icons below to bring you directly to the this weeks grocery special offers from regional grocery chains across Ireland.
Every week you can access this weeks grocery special offers across Ireland from all of the main grocery chains from this single handy web page. On a weekly basis, sometimes monthly, all the Irish supermarket chains publish their special offers on their websites in various different formats. You can use this webpage to click on any of the icons below to bring you directly to the this weeks grocery special offers across Ireland from the main supermarket chains.

 

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