This year’s official day of the international Black Friday discount event (November 24, 2023) is approaching, followed immediately by the cyber monday, although the relevant discount offers of most stores have already started. The goal of all consumers should not only be economically advantageous, but at the same time smart and safe purchases.

The Consumer Advocate and the European Consumer Center of Greece advise on this:

* We pay attention to the availability of the products: Sometimes, behind a very low price hides a rather long waiting time for delivery, which may not always satisfy our immediate needs.

* We confirm the correctness and honesty of the discount price offered: Sometimes, it happens that discounts are fictitious and deceive us. We identify and consult tools that are available online and show us over time the evolution of the prices of the products we are interested in. We also note the prices of the products before and after the application of any discounts, so that we can easily compare them afterwards and thus know if it actually exists and what our true financial benefit is.

* We prefer to process payment by cash on delivery or electronic means, which give us the possibility to dispute an electronic transaction afterwards, if a problem arises. We avoid full payment of products by bank deposit before delivery, unless we have complete confidence in the reputation and business reputation of the seller.

* When buying remotely, we ensure that all legally required identification (eg trading name) and contact (full postal address of establishment) details are listed on the merchant’s website. For even greater security, we look for additional identifying information, such as registration number in the General Commercial Register and VAT number.

* In the final purchase price of the products, we include any indirect costs (e.g. cost of cash on delivery, transport, insurance, etc.), so that we have a complete picture of our real financial burden.

* We submit as soon as possible after receiving a product and, in any case, within the legal deadline of 3 days to the postal company that made the delivery our reservations for any obvious damages, since they may have been caused during transport and we are entitled to compensation. We definitely contact the store of sale as soon as possible, in order to investigate the possibility that a product was damaged or damaged in the first place (before transport).

* We are informed about the policy of cancellation of transactions and returns of products implemented by the stores with which we do business. We are well aware that the rights of withdrawal in distance purchases, as well as the free correction or replacement of defective products, are established consumer rights guaranteed by law, and we are not swayed by false and misleading claims by sellers that they are supposedly privileged – unique and Additional facilities.

* We are strongly concerned with prices that are too low, especially when their range is quite far from the usual competition for the respective products, or when it comes to product listings exclusively on social media, as there is a serious risk of deception.

* If we buy online from third (non-EU) countries, since Black Friday is an international discount event, we are well aware in advance that imported products incur customs clearance costs, which may be multiples of the original price and significantly burden it .

* We give special preference to stores that voluntarily undertake to resolve a consumer dispute amicably through the institution of out-of-court resolution (e.g. through the Consumer Ombudsman), as in this way the rights of consumers acquire greater value and are even more ensured .

Above all, emphasizes the Consumer Advocate, we are not led to hasty or impulsive decisions just because in this period the prices are low, ignoring our real needs and financial possibilities. With a good search, real bargains and low prices do exist and can be found on a variety of products throughout the year.