Related News

Home » Metro » Public Services

Gripes soar against restaurant coupon seller

THE number of complaints against restaurant rating and group buying website have surged this year, the Shanghai Consumer Rights Protection Commission said today.

Complaints include refusal to honor customers’ request for a refund, inclusion of unlicensed eateries in the discount program, discrepancies on the coupons and unilateral changes in contracts, the commission.

Many consumers have lost their appetite for the Shanghai-based restaurant review website, officials indicated. The commission received 182 complaints about the website this year as of Sunday, soaring 273 percent compared with the same period last year, the commission said.

Dianping officials said they would issue a response today.

Among the complaints, about 40 percent were about customers being denied refunds after their group purchase coupons expired, though such refund was promised in writing by the website.

The website was also found to have failed to have scrutinized restaurant businesses listed as part of its group purchase program, allowing eateries which have no business licenses to sell coupons on it, said Tang Jiansheng, deputy secretary-general of the commission.

A consumer surnamed Sun paid 28 yuan (US$4.51) for two meals at a Beijing cafe operated by a South Korean on the website in a group purchase deal in January.

She went to the cafe based on the address mentioned on the website before the Spring Festival, but did not find it. She could not reach it via phone, either. It was not until mid-March that admitted that the cafe had closed.

The commission’s investigation found that the website sold coupons for the cafe even though it did not have a business license.

The website also drew the ire of diners who found the terms of the group buying deals released on the website did not match reality.

At one restaurant that said it provides a variety of seafood and vegetables, customers found the seafood turned out to be frozen fish balls and there were only two kinds of vegetables.

The website was also accused of shortening the expiration date of group purchase coupons and altering the content of promotions.


Copyright © 1999- Shanghai Daily. All rights reserved.Preferably viewed with Internet Explorer 8 or newer browsers.

沪公网安备 31010602000204号

Email this to your friend