Costa Rica Coffee Guide

Watch out for Mother’s Day sales tricks, says Economy Ministry

August 11, 2014

Mother’s Day, celebrated on Friday in Costa Rica, is one of the country’s most popular – and lucrative – holidays, with some businesses offering month-long special pricing on items and services.

But a study released Monday by the Economy Ministry found that more than a quarter of businesses inspected in the San José area failed to follow the rules on promotional sales.

Ministry inspectors found abnormalities with Mother’s Day sale offers at 37 of 132 businesses they visited in the Greater Metropolitan Area.

Economy Vice Minister Geannina Dinarte said the most common violation was a failure to display both original and promotional prices of goods and services, meaning consumers are unaware if they are actually getting a discount. Of inspected businesses, 26 did not display both prices on tags, banners or in ads.

Inspectors also noted that many businesses failed to clearly publicize restrictions on offers, and several discounts were limited to cash purchases, which is prohibited by law.

Ministry officials inspected the businesses from July 29-Aug. 4, and violators – mostly clothing, shoe, appliance and technology stores – were given a written warning. Inspectors will return this week, and if businesses are caught again, they will be denounced at the National Consumer Commission. Fines could range from ₡2.3-₡9.4 million ($4,400-$17,700), equivalent to 10-40 base salaries, according to current consumer protection legislation.

“All information on discounts and special promotions must be clearly displayed to the consumer in order to promote market transparency, hence the importance of these inspections,” Dinarte said.

Consumers also can file complaints by calling 1311 and 800-2667-866, or by filling out an online complaint form at the Economy Ministry’s website.

You may be interested

Chirripó National Park to reopen October 30
Costa Rica
1705 views
Costa Rica
1705 views

Chirripó National Park to reopen October 30

Alejandro Zúñiga - September 28, 2020

Chirripó National Park will reopen for tourists on October 30, the National System of Conservation Areas (SINAC) announced Monday. Visitors…

Costa Rica coronavirus updates for Monday, September 28
Costa Rica
5566 views
Costa Rica
5566 views

Costa Rica coronavirus updates for Monday, September 28

Alejandro Zúñiga - September 28, 2020

Costa Rica announced 49 new coronavirus-related deaths since Friday for a total of 861, according to official data released Monday…

SJO airport improvements delayed, report says
Costa Rica
6709 views
Costa Rica
6709 views

SJO airport improvements delayed, report says

Alejandro Zúñiga - September 28, 2020

The operator of Costa Rica's Juan Santamaría International Airport (SJO) will suspend planned improvements for several years due to the…