When is a Promo, Not a Promo? When it's a Rip off.
I have to apologize for ranting today. I just felt the need to get this out of my chest. When you buy something being promoted at a discounted price, you expect the quality of the item to be the same as though you’re buying it at full price. Shouldn’t you? Unless there was any notice to the contrary, you would feel cheated if you get something inferior.
This is the situation I felt last night after having dinner with some friends at a popular buffet restaurant in
Everything was dismal. Had it not been for the occasion, I would have walked out and took my friends to the fastfoods across the road. I didn't want to make a scene and spoil my wife's birthday dinner so I just pretended as though I was enjoying the food. I now wonder maybe my other guests were just being polite and were pretending too.
I’ve dined in Valentines many times before and was quite satisfied, but last night was a huge disappointment. The only reason I could think of is that they were cutting costs just because they were charging less as a result of their promo. So to cut costs, they removed the most expensive dishes in their menu and used the cheapest ingredients available (like tough beef). I could bet my bottom dollar that once the promo ends, oysters and prawns will be back in their menu and the steaks will be a lot more tender.
I’ve sent letters about this to FairGo (a TV program that tackles consumer issues) and to the Commerce Commission. I believe that Valentines violated the Fair Trading Act by misleading customers into believing that they are getting a discount when in fact they are being ripped off. Let’s wait and see what’ll happen next.
I sent a letter to Valentines Support Office and they said only oysters are excluded from the menu, not prawns. Sad to say there were no prawns either. I still think that said exclusion should have been stated somewhere in their advertisement, even if it was in fine print. Also, the screenshot below from their website clearly shows oysters. If that's not misleading, what is it then?