Muscat: If you purchase an item from any store, you can return it or have it replaced in case you find any fault in it within 10 days of the purchase but only if you have the receipt with you.
Any verbal deal anywhere does not help, according to Public Authority for Consumer Protection (PACP) which has launched a campaign to educate people on this.
The PACP's campaign has urged people to "ask for receipts as it proves that you entered a deal or had an agreement when you purchased any item or product." It further says: "Keep this receipt safe. This may help you avail of the repair facility during the guarantee period, or return it or have it replaced if any fault is found during the first ten days.
Also, avoid purchasing any item which does not have any details and it has just verbal guarantee."
However, the consumers have some practical problems as many shops in the city defy the rule in the absence of any strong implementation of the order, said Kamil Sarwar, a Pakistani electrician who lives in Ruwi.
Sarwar said that if one purchases an item costing a small amount from a road-side shop, one does not receive any receipt for it. "Most people, if they purchase a cheap item do not bother about a receipt. When we reach home, only then we come to know if the item is faulty. It is the goodwill which works. If the retail shop owner is good, he certainly replaces it. If not, then it becomes difficult," he said.
Not bothered about receipts
Abdullah, an Algerian who works in a mobile accessory shop in Azaiba, talked to the Times of Oman on the condition that the name of the shop must not be mentioned. He said, "We sell small accessories of mobile phones and carry out minor repairs also for common people.
Most of our customers are not bothered about receipts. We also don't make the effort to give them a receipt. However, when they purchase some costly items, we give them receipts, even if they do not ask for it."
Jatin Singh, an Indian toy shop salesperson, said, "When I joined the shop, I was trained in how to prepare receipts. My employer too said that receipts are to be given only if someone demands. Most people who visit our shop in the Seeb market do not ask for a receipt.
Therefore, we are also careless about it. But it is the right of the customer and a fair practice to provide them the proof that they have purchased some item from us."
Shakira, a Bangladeshi school teacher, said that she makes sure that she has receipts of items she purchases for others. "But normally, if I purchase any small item, I do not ask for a receipt.
I know that if the shopkeeper will start issuing receipts for each and every item to all the customers, he would not be able to attend other customers quickly. This is the reason, I do not ask for a receipt. But it is very important to have one if one wants to escape any trouble after purchase," she said.
PD Mathew, a Sri Lankan marketing executive, said that there should be a mechanism to monitor that all small shops and restaurants, such as super markets and hypermarkets and big hotels, also provide receipts.