July 23 2010 by Ellen Roseman
Added fees are getting out of control. I’m tired of seeing large companies advertise one price to lure you in and then jack it up with a multitude of extra costs.
One outcome is a loss of faith among the buying public. How can you trust lowball prices that don’t reflect what you’ll pay down the road when you get the bill?
Advertised airline fares are a big offender, as are cellphone plans. Utility bills have transportation and delivery charges, customer charges and debt retirement charges added to the commodity price.
And let’s not forget the “provincial benefit” on fixed-price electricity contracts — not a benefit, but a hefty surcharge.
I’d like to see more pressure on companies to adopt all-in pricing. Upstarts in an industry can also lead to change.
New cellphone entrants offering unlimited monthly rate plans — namely, Wind Mobile, Public Mobile and Mobilicity — have pushed Rogers into launching its own copycat brand, Chatr Wireless.
When extra fees are excluded from prices, you feel surprised, shocked and abused. Your trust in sellers is gone. The integrity of the shopping experience is in tatters.
Here’s an example below of a Bell Canada customer struggling with a plague of extra charges on his bill.