Consumers have had to adapt to unprecedented circumstances in recent months as coronavirus changed how everyone lived and work. Unfortunately, evidence has emerged that certain elements of regular retail shopping are facing unforeseen problems, the kinds of which end up costing the customer.
Older people (aged 55 or over) are experiencing the biggest wait for refunds, with five percent waiting over a month before the pandemic, compared to 17 percent who have experienced this wait time since.
The research revealed that overall, the fear of not being able to get items refunded has put fear into consumers who may limit their spending, which will have obvious negative repercussions on the economy.
Jeni Mundy, Visa’s UK & Ireland Managing Director, commented on the company’s findings: “With consumer spending crucial to Britain’s economic recovery, it’s concerning to see that people are worried about securing refunds should they need to, and that in some cases this is even preventing them from making purchases.
“It’s important that people understand the many options open to them to get their money back should something go wrong.
“A good place to start is to get familiar with a seller’s cancellation, refund and exchange policy before you buy – this can often be easily found on their website.
“If, after speaking to the retailer, you are still unable to get a refund, there are alternatives available to claw back those costs.
“You should contact your bank that issued your Visa card and ask them to pursue a chargeback claim, where they may be able to submit a claim to the retailer’s bank to request your money back.
“You can pursue a chargeback claim if you received only a partial refund, goods that weren’t as described, or have been offered alternative refund methods, including vouchers, points and rebooking.
“Your bank has 120 days from when the payment was made to make a chargeback claim, which is great news for people who might have missed the returns window. However, it’s worth noting that banks’ time frames may vary and it’s best to file a dispute as early as possible to allow plenty of time.
“For travel, concert tickets or future-dated items, this time limit begins on the day of the event or holiday booking – providing extra reassurance to those worried about making holiday purchases.”