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Mr M's complaint against ASDA

Mr M Jacobs



Complaint against ASDA

Went to the Hemel Hempstead branch of Asda. Parked the car and paid £2 for a pay-and-display ticket with attached refund voucher to obtain refund of the £2 if spending more than £5. At the checkout, as I was paying by credit card for my shopping I gave the refund voucher to the checkout lady after she had scanned all items and entered my pin. The till receipt showed that the £2 refund was not given so pointed this out to the checkout lady. Response was "Sorry we do not give cash refunds for parking vouchers" to which I responded that if that was the case then why was the £2 not credited against the shopping bill. Response - payment had already been applied to the card before the checkout lady had seen the refund voucher and if I wanted the £2 refunded I would have to go back and purchase more items to a minimum value of £2 to apply the refund voucher against. I Went to speak to the in store Customer Service who stated that this was the policy of the car parking company (Parking Eye). I found this hard to believe as the parking company would be instructed by the land owner/lease holder. I subsequently spoke to another more senior staff member who stated that this non cash refund arrangement was an agreement between Asda Head Office and Parking Eye as previously there was a long que of customers at the Customer Service point requesting a refund of the parking charge. I asked as to why the checkout staff do not ask for the refund voucher prior to completing the transaction at the point of sale thus enabling the £2 to be credited to the final bill. Response - checkout staff are not trained or required to do so. So here is the scam:- 1. Park car and purchase parking ticket with a refund if purchasing goods to the value of £5 or more 2. At checkout provide refund voucher 3. Where paying by credit/debit card "Oops sorry sir I have applied payment and cannot give you a cash refund. You will have to purchase more goods to the minimum value of £2 to obtain refund" 4. The choice the customer has is either walk out and forfeit the £2 (Parking Eye win) or re-enter the store and purchase more goods to the minimum value of £2 to obtain a refund (Asda Win). 5. There is no prompt from the check out staff to ask the customer for the refund voucher at the correct point in the checkout process (as staff are not trained or required to do so BUT are trained in the application of the scam) so that the refund can be applied as a credit to the bill. So there you have it. A WIN-WIN situation for Asda and Parking Eye and a LOSE-LOSE for the customer. Is it no wonder that Asda can undercut the competition. Query to Asda – Is this a local store initiative or is this scam sanctioned at the corporate level? First time I have ever shopped at Asda and it will certainly be the last.

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