Starting tomorrow, the new rules on end-of-season discounts will kick in: here's what changes

Starting tomorrow, the new rules on end-of-season discounts will kick in: here's what changes

There are still a few days left but the wait is already high. On July 6, the summer sales will start throughout Italy. But already on July 1, recalls the consumer association Codacons, the new measures on end-of-season discounts provided for by the legislative decree, approved on 7 March, which implements EU directive 2019/2161 into Italian law, will come into force. The new provisions have changed the legislation on discounts, imposing stricter rules on price transparency and sales on e-commerce sites, also providing for heavier penalties in the event of unfair commercial practices.

Squeeze on “fake discounts”

The main novelty concerns the "fake discounts" practiced by merchants, i.e. the practice of raising the price of a product before applying the discount percentage during sales. A solution, now explains the consumers' association, which with the entry into force of the new rules will no longer be feasible: the new legislation in fact provides for the obligation for shopkeepers to clearly indicate, in addition to the percentage discount and the final price , also the lowest price (and no longer the list price) applied to all consumers in the previous 30 days. So when the discounts gradually become higher, as happens during sales, the previous price to indicate is the one referring to the 30 days prior to the start of the sales. Traders who do not comply with this new rule will face a fine ranging from 516 to 3,098 euros. A measure that now, thanks to the new legislative decree, will apply not only to physical stores, but also to web sales and e-commerce platforms, thus guaranteeing greater transparency for consumers.

The ten "tips" to shop safely

In view of July 6, Codacons has drawn up a list of ten precautions for consumers who want to make purchases "in safety". Here they are:

1) Always keep the receipt: it is not true that items on sale cannot be exchanged. The seller is obliged to replace the defective item even if he declares that the items on sale cannot be exchanged. If the exchange is not possible, e.g. because the product is finished, you are entitled to a refund (not a voucher). You have two months, not 7 or 8 days, to report the defect.

2) Sales must really be end of season: the goods offered for sale under the heading "Balance" must be the surplus of that of the season that is ending and not stock funds. According to the consumers' association, it is advisable to avoid those shops that had half-empty shelves just before the sales and which were then filled with the most varied items. It is unlikely, if not impossible, that at the end of the season the shop will be stocked with all sizes and colors for each type of product.

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