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Booking fees costing Kiwis $68m per year

NZ Newswire logoNZ Newswire 13/03/2017
<span style="font-size:13px;">New Zealanders could be paying $68 million each year in extra fees such as booking and service charges, Consumer NZ says.</span> © Getty Images New Zealanders could be paying $68 million each year in extra fees such as booking and service charges, Consumer NZ says.

New Zealanders could be paying $68 million each year in undisclosed extra fees such as booking and service charges, Consumer NZ says.

More than two-thirds of those it surveyed had paid extra fees when buying goods and services, often called 'booking' or 'service' fees, which are often added on to travel or entertainment purchases.

"They're not included in the advertised price, misleading consumers about what they actually have to pay," Consumer chief executive Sue Chetwin said.

A campaign has been launched calling for the Fair Trading Act to require businesses to include these extra charged in the full cost of products up front.

"While the Fair Trading Act prohibits misleading representations about price, it hasn't been effective at stopping drip-pricing practices."

Almost 90 per cent of those who'd paid extra fees had done so more than once in the last year.

The average fee is $13 extra, but can range from $5 to $50, Consumer said.

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