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'Postcode penalty' unfair

Published: 8 Jan 2013 09:301 comment

A report published by Citizens Advice Scotland has shown that over one million Scots are being ripped off by unfair delivery charges because of where they live. The problem is especially bad in rural areas, with many companies charging extra to deliver to TD postcodes despite them being closer to where the item is shipped from.

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Local MSP John Lamont has hit out at the costs, and urged companies to reconsider what they charge rural customers.

John Lamont MSP said: "This report reveals the shocking extent to which some retailers are disadvantaging Scottish consumers. Despite some rural areas being closer to where an item was dispatched from, residents are still being charged more than if they lived in a city further away.

"In the Borders this has meant that some companies charge more simply because they live in the TD postcode area. This is clearly unfair and something must be done to ensure that there is a level playing field. Simply because you live in a rural area is no excuse for adding a surcharge, and the companies who do this should reconsider it.

"Residents in many parts of the Borders already have to put up with substandard internet speeds and mobile connectivity. To also be asked to pay more, or wait longer for exactly the same item as someone in Edinburgh or Glasgow is ludicrous.

John Lamont added: "This report just goes to show the extra benefits of shopping locally, and supporting local businesses. However, for items that cannot be sourced close to home it is important that Borders residents are not forced to suffer from this postcode penalty."

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