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readers' submissions

 

Singapore and Malaysia - Tips on solving or avoiding purchase problems

by Charles Smith

April 23, 2006

SINGAPORE

Like anyplace else, use your own good judgment and common sense.

When buying ask if there is an international warranty and look at it yourself.  Be sure the dealer chops the warranty card and be sure it has the correct serial # as they do sometimes get the packaging mixed up.  Ask to test the equipment before leaving the shop and check to be sure everything you have just paid for is inside the box!   Be sure a receipt and all papers are included.

If leaving by air you may be eligible for a 5% GST tax refund, either directly from the retailer or at the airport.

If you feel you have been screwed on a purchase in Singapore due to faulty goods or overpricing they do have very strict protections for you.  First try to resolve the problem with the dealer.  If you feel you have been overcharged he has to show you the Recommended Retail Price (RRP)

At Sim Lim Square they will help you with this through the Customer Relations Officer at the Information Counter on the ground floor.  You will need your receipt and the original packaging.

Or, check with the Ministry of Trade and Industry: 100 High Street,  #09-01 The Treasury,  Singapore 179434 Tel: (+65) 6225-9911,    website: http://app.mti.gov.sg

Or, The Small Claims Tribunal: website: http://www.smallclaims.gov.sg The process can take as much as 14 to 21 days.  But urgent or tourist claims will be settled within 24 hours!  Fees are S$10 for under S$5000, 20 for up to 10,000, 1% for claim amounts up to S$20,000.  No lawyers allowed. And you have to do it within one year.

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MALAYSIA

Also there are some good Consumer Associations in Malaysia.  The tourist association offices should know the address in their local areas.  Or, see the consumer “HelpDesk Menu,” in the website: http://www.consumer.com.my   Or just go to: http://www.consumer.com.my/resources/helpdesk.php. The site has lots of tips, cautions and commentaries

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