Time of celebration becomes time of complaint

Hu Min
Around 1,500 complaints were received by the marker watchdog during the Spring Festival holiday from unhappy customers.
Hu Min

Shanghai market watchdog received 1,500 complaints during the Spring Festival holiday with catering, accommodation and transportation topping the list, a 12 percent increase from the same period last year.

A total of 334 complaints involved dishonest practices, poor quality of food, smoking and booking disputes, the Shanghai Market Supervision and Management Bureau said yesterday.

One tourist who paid over 10,000 yuan (US$1,500) for accommodation in Thailand, found it was not the anticipated "luxury villa" suite. Another complained about a mouse-sighting in a hotel in Jiangxi Province. Another diner complained when the crab-meat filling of shengjian, a pan-fried dumpling, turned out to be pork.

Another 125 complaints were related to misleading price tags, short weights and other scams.

A man claimed he was charged 358 yuan per kilogram compared to a 316 yuan per kilogram price tag at a supermarket. Another said the real size of a cake was much smaller than promised.

Quality and fake discounts were problems in terms of clothing with a consumer saying a 1,640-yuan down jacket bought from a shopping mall had obviously been mended at the cuff.

Complaints about transportation, culture, entertainment and sports soared by more than 50 percent from the same period last year, with rail tickets, movies and gyms especially irksome.

A few complaints were related to nianyefan (New Year’s Eve dinner), concerning delivery, hygiene and smoking. One customer complained that the nianyefan set meal he received was not what he ordered, while another paid a 1,000-yuan deposit in November, only to find the restaurant closed on New Year's Eve.

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