Many people that shy away from online shopping do so because they believe they won’t have the same rights buying from an internet retailer as they would if they bought in store. There are always fears lurking about getting goods on time and returns policies if what we receive isn’t up to scratch.
However, your rights with online shopping are just as extensive as they are if you buy from a shop – and with huge savings available by picking up goods from the internet you shouldn’t let these fears stop you getting the bargains you deserve.
Will you get your goods on time?
Every website should clearly label the last order date for Christmas deliveries and if it’s not flagged on the website then you can always call the retailer directly to satisfy any concerns. Legally, if you are promised delivery by a certain date, and your goods don’t arrive, then your contract has effectively been broken and you can pull out. Also consider that there are distance selling rules which clearly state that delivery has to be executed within 30 days of an order being made unless pre-agreed.
That being said, you should make sure you are at home to receive any deliveries. For example, in some areas of Ireland, An Post state that as many as one in four parcels cannot be delivered because there is nobody at home to accept them. So to avoid any issues it is worth thinking about your delivery address ahead of time – for example, if you’re not at home during the daytime, can you perhaps have your items delivered to you at work? Or to a friend who is at home during the day?
Another consideration is delivery charges. If you’re ordering from outside the EU then there may be customs duty to pay on items with a value of €150 or more; and VAT to pay on items with a value over €22. There may also be an administration charge with the company you buy from.
What about returns?
When you buy online you have what is known as a seven day “cooling off” period where you can inform the retailer that you plan to send the item back and get a refund. This can be done for any reason – but do bear in mind you will usually have to pay the price of return postage. However, there are some exceptions to the cooling off period – typically these include food purchases and time specific purchases, such as flights and hotels.
Overall, the advantages of buying online are massive and as long as you’re quick you should still be able to capitalise on some great deals before Christmas. Check out Moneysaver.ie for all the latest Christmas voucher codes from big name retailers.