Why would you punish your customers?

I have recently come across 3 situations where I have been surprised (and not in a good way!) at the attitude of some businesses towards their customers.

It seems to be a growing trend to make car parking an obstacle, to the extent that it seems they are actively trying to catch you out by making the signage complicated, in small print, and not immediately obvious … until you’re aware of it.

A few weeks ago I had just under an hour to kill whilst waiting to pick somebody up, so decided to go to the supermarket.

When I finished shopping and paid, I was given a free parking voucher which puzzled me, however, on reading the voucher when I got home, it said ‘don’t forget to validate your registration at the pay machine’. I hadn’t done this, but there was an option to register online before midnight, which I duly did.

I was not impressed 2 weeks later to receive a parking charge notice! (I have since successfully appealed it)

It is not the only occasion I have heard of – people having business meetings in hotels have found themselves in receipt of parking charge notices. Even motorway service stations where business meetings are encouraged have started to use these tactics.

The issue is not necessarily the charging for parking (although it does seem churlish to charge your customers) but it’s the underhand way in which it’s done.

Why place barriers in the way of your customers in the first place? To make it difficult for them to understand the rules by confusing or inconspicuous signage is outrageous!


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