Wendy Knowler's Consumer Hacks: Airbag no-nos and emailed invoice warning | East Coast Radio

Wendy Knowler's Consumer Hacks: Airbag no-nos and emailed invoice warning

From airbag no-nos to warnings about emailed invoices, Wendy Knowler has five new Consumer Hacks for you. 

Airbag no-nos on Consumer Hacks
East Coast Radio & Canva

1. Airbags do the opposite of protecting you if you don’t sit right

An airbag’s main job is to prevent you and your passengers from colliding with your car’s steering wheel, windscreen, dashboard, etc during an accident.
But they could harm or kill you when they deploy at 320km/hr if you don’t sit properly - that is, with your chest about 25cm away from the steering wheel where airbags are situated.
So no hugging the steering wheel while driving, no children in the front seat and front passengers sitting with their legs on the dashboard is a huge no-no.

 2. Beware the emailed invoice

Whenever you are sent an invoice via email, please assume that a fraudster intercepted the original email, sent by the company which you’ve done business with, and altered the document to replace the business’s bank account details with theirs.
If you want to avoid paying a fraudster, never make payment on an emailed invoice until you have phoned the company you owe money to - by looking up the number online, not phoning the number on the maybe-fake email - and verifying their banking details.

3. Your order is broken when delivered. Who is liable? 

When you order something online, the retailer and its third-party courier carry the risk for the goods until they are delivered to you, and only then does it pass to you.
So you’d be entitled to a refund from the retailer if the goods don’t make it to your door or arrive broken.   (So best you check asap.)
But don’t assume that all online retailers will respect your consumer right to a refund - I’ve heard from consumers who received damaged goods and were told by the retailer to seek recourse from the courier company, and vice versa.
So do check the online retailer’s policy on this before making a purchase.

4. That car hire company’s “helpful” gesture could cost you plenty

If you go to collect a hired car and you’re told that they’ve already pre-checked the car for you, and all you have to do is sign their checklist, just say no. Once you have driven off in that car, any scrape, scratch, dent or hailstone damage not marked on that document will be for your account. So, insist on only signing that form once you have inspected the car and added any mark on the bodywork, tyre rims or covers, no matter how insignificant it may seem.

5.  How prepared is your 18-year-old to sign a contract?

The age of majority used to be 21, but the government dropped that to just 18 in 2007, which means many “children” become fully-fledged adults while they are still wearing a school uniform.
If they aren’t made to understand the downside of all that legal power, they’ll end up with a bad credit record by the time they’re 21.
Teaching your almost-adults how to read contracts; to check the most important bits - contract term, monthly payments and early cancellation penalty - and how to stand their ground with a pushy salesperson, is an absolutely essential life skill.

Listen to more Consumer Hacks below:

Consumer Hacks with Wendy Knowler
East Coast Radio

Contact Wendy Knowler:

Get in touch with Wendy via her website or her Facebook page. Please note that Wendy is not able to personally respond to every email she receives. If she is able to take up your case, she will contact you directly. Here are other avenues for you to consider.

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