Buying and selling online

There is a widespread feeling that some of the rural areas are not treated fairly by some online retailers. Some retailers claim to offer free UK delivery when in fact hidden surcharges apply to certain areas usually including the Highlands and Island, rural Aberdeenshire and Northern Ireland.

These 'free' claims are likely to be illegal:

  • Blanket claims like 'free UK delivery' when many consumers are excluded
  • Adding surcharges at the very end of the online buying process or even after the sale has been completed
  • Very high and disproportionate surcharges
  • Refusals to deliver to remote or rural areas

Delivery Law UK 

We enforce consumer protection laws surrounding internet sales, if you wish to complain or raise an issue about delivery charges from retail websites visit Delivery Law UK website.

The website offers advice for consumers and businesses in a clear and readable format.

There are self-help tools for consumers to test whether they have a case and template letters to use to raise cases. The website enables consumers to report unfair practices to the correct Trading Standards service, the Advertising Standards Authority or Citizens Advice Consumer Helpline details for more advice. 

There is a range of information for businesses about how website operators can comply with the law and treat consumers fairly. It includes tips and template letters for businesses to use when they encounter unfair surcharges in their buying.

The website also offers advice aimed at advisers, investigators, solicitors, policy-makers and others who want to explore the legal requirements in more depth.

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