What a week! We had a giggle at Ryanair calling us ‘clueless clowns’ and watched airlines defend their ‘admin’ charges. But it’s not just airlines getting under your skin, the culprits include dentists and theatres.
Last Friday you joined us in standing up to unfair surcharges. We had high hopes that you’d feel as strongly about this as we do but we were overwhelmed by your support.
You’ve given us great feedback about who the goodies and baddies are – and highlighted other areas we can look into. So we thought you’d be keen to hear what happens next…
What happens to your pledges?
We’ve received over 17,000 pledges of support. We’ll be using your pledges as evidence in our super complaint to the Office of Fair Trading (OFT) to demonstrate the number of UK consumers affected by this issue. We’re submitting it at the end of March. If you still haven’t pledged your support you can do so here:
It’s not just about airlines
You might have thought the super complaint is just about the airlines as this has been the focus of our pledge.
But it goes further than that. The surcharge super complaint raises issue with any industry charging unfair card fees – anything above 1-2% if paying by credit card and anything above 20p if paying by debit card!
Low cost airlines are often the worst offenders. But you’ve given us plenty more to add to that list. You’ve told us about dentists, cinemas, theatres, and even local councils stinging you with charges when it’s time to pay.
Your concerns about surcharges
Commenter Stephen Hicks raised concerns over how retailers will make up their losses if the OFT find the surcharges are unfair. ‘Ticket prices would rise to compensate, but at least we would not feel ripped off,’ he said.
Richard told us ‘it is easy enough – make all companies quote the actual cost to the customer at point of sale’. We’re definitely behind you on that one.
Dave Darwent told us that we’re just touching the surface of this issue. ‘Which? is missing a fantastic opportunity here to really help smaller traders: the Super Complaint should be about the BANKS charging these fees and forcing the retailers to have to pay for telephone and electricity services too.’
The digital community has rallied together to get our pledge promoted in all the right places, too. A big thank you to Martin Lewis for flagging it in your latest email and Travel Supermarket and Money High Street for embedding it on your sites. We’ve even made the embed code available so you can put it wherever you like (sorry Ryanair, you can’t stick it there).
We’re keeping track of all your examples to explain the breadth of the issue to the OFT. Please keep your ideas and personal experiences coming in. You never know, it might become the focus of our next investigation.