With this nasty trick we should be pulled over the table when shopping
We customers do not want to spend too much on our purchases, but manufacturers want as much of our money as possible. Sure, we're always competing against each other: we consumers are getting better and better informed so as not to get ripped off, but on the other hand, resourceful experts are always thinking up new tricks to get our money.
Of course, today everyone really knows that you should compare prices in the supermarket and sometimes look in the "Bückzone" for cheap alternatives. We know what special offers are and can read thanks to the reference prices directly on the labels on the shelf, how much 100 grams of a product costs and thus weigh the bulk pack against the normal pack.
Nevertheless, for some months, a new bad habit has prevailed among the manufacturers, which cleverly brings us to spend more money for less mass - by the manufacturers play skillfully with the pack sizes! There are quantities made larger or smaller, sometimes it is pointed out, sometimes it is veiled - how should one go through there?
A recent example: KitKat nearly 10 percent more expensive
Nestlé has struck again? with a quantity reduction in Kitkat! And this time really cheeky: identical ...Posted by Consumer Center Hamburg on Friday, April 8, 2016
Particularly sophisticated is the current case of KitKat, to which the consumer center Hamburg now points on its Facebook page. KitKat bars are nearly 10 percent more expensive - and hardly anyone notices!
Because: The purchase price has remained the same, but the manufacturer has changed the pack size secretly. Instead of 45 grams a KitKat bar suddenly has only 41.5 grams. We do not find any indication as a consumer on the packaging. On the contrary: From the outside, the bars look exactly as they did before - and 3.5 grams are missing per bar, hardly anyone notices, right? In sum, however, the smaller size is already 17.5 grams for a sales unit of 5 bars - or in other words: KitKat has become 8.4 percent more expensive and no one has noticed!
The "More Content!" Trap
? 25% more content? promises the hair care brand Guhl on the packaging of their shampoos. A reason to enjoy? Unfortunately...Posted by Consumer Center Hamburg on Wednesday, February 24, 2016
But it is also the other way around: more in it and still more expensive! This is shown by the example "Guhl". The shampoo bottles are larger since a few weeks and now have 250 instead of 200 ml content. It says bold on the outside: "+25% more content" - and as a consumer one thinks briefly: Great, more in it for the same price, that's great!
But stop! Nobody said anything about "at the same price"! Although Guhl strikingly deals with the new bottle size, it is still a price trap, because for a meager 50 ml more content, we consumers have to pay one more euro: The price of the new bottles is from 2.95 euros to 3.95 euros increased - or by 7.1 percent!
The "cheaper and more expensive" trap
Country-loving milk with vanilla and chocolate flavor is now available in 30 percent smaller bottles (350 g instead of 500 g). The...Posted by Consumer Center Hamburg on Monday, March 21, 2016
In this example, chocolate and vanilla milk costs less - and is more expensive! That sounds confusing? Should it too! Here the manufacturer has changed the bottle design. And even the size down adjusted: Instead of 500 gr are suddenly only 350 gr in it. So that the whole thing is not so noticeable, the manufacturer has also screwed the price down - but not as strong as the size! Who for 350 gr now 0.95 euros instead of 1.15 euros for 500 gr pays the bottom line whopping 18 percent (!) More for a bottle.
The "new recipe" trap
Hidden price increase for Milasan Milk Powder: Milasan's start and follow milk has a new recipe. For...Posted by Consumer Center Hamburg on Wednesday, March 16, 2016
As in the case of KitKat, the size of the pack has also shrunk considerably - but the manufacturer of the milk powder obfuscates it using a different method. The fact that the package contains only 500 grams instead of 800 grams, we notice as a consumer in this case, not at first, because the complete design of the packs has been renewed.
We are distracted by new pictures and characters, and also a "new recipe" sign lures us on the wrong track: We think the manufacturer communicates openly that he has changed something in his product - however, he does not tell us that it is is also about a new pack size!
To completely confuse us, the box has remained the same size at first glance: the front has exactly the same dimensions as before - only the depth of the pack has shrunk! And: In order not to let any skepticism arise in us, the new pack has also become 40 cents cheaper. But it is much more expensive than before: Who spends 4.45 euros for 500 grams instead of 4.85 euros for 800 grams, pays a whopping 46.8 percent more!
So you protect yourself from hidden price increases
It does not help: Manufacturers remain sophisticated and always try to be one step ahead of consumers. The only remedy, however, is to be alert: If you know your products you buy more often and compare prices, no one can fool you. Keep an open eye on the reference price, ie the price for a liter or 100 grams.
In addition, you can always check the Consumer Center pages to stay up-to-date with well-hidden price hikes.