Online Retailers Slammed By ASA For “misleading” Delivery Charges
After a numerous complaints of a “postcode lottery” there were some additional delivery charges applied to more rural areas, the advertising watchdog has banned any retailers from claiming free delivery if the entire country is not covered.
It said that areas like the Scottish Highlands, Northern Ireland and the Isle of Wight were most commonly slapped with undisclosed surcharges. In addition that any restrictions or exclusions must now clearly made from the outset.
“Companies must honour the delivery claims they’re making or stop making them,” ASA chief executive Guy Parker said.
“It’s simply not fair to mislead people about whether parcels can be delivered to them, or how much it will cost.”
A study by Citizens Advice Scotland, customers in northern parts of Scotland pay 30% more for deliveries than the customers in rest of the UK. The customers those living who are in Scottish islands pay up to 50% more.
Richard Lochhead SNP MSP has been leading the fight against misleading adverts. He is also heading the Fair Delivery Charges campaign and providing information to the ASA in its investigation.
Though he called for more to be done he said: “It’s now incumbent upon those companies who are failing to be upfront with consumers to sit up, take notice and change their practices. I hope they respond swiftly to this very clear shot across their bows.”
Ultimately, if companies truly value their customers in rural and northern Scotland then they shouldn’t be discriminating at all when it comes to delivering goods.”