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November 19, 2015

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Unlicensed home moving firms use Internet, mobile app to lure cosumers

MANY unlicensed home moving companies are now using the Internet and mobile apps to lure gullible consumers and then force them into paying exorbitant fees, a local industry association said yesterday.

There have been instances of unlicensed firms hiring temporary workers with no relocation work experience and refusing to compensate customers if the workers damage their furniture, the home moving commission of the Shanghai Road Transportation Association said.

There are an estimated 3,000 unlicensed home moving companies operating in the city, compared to 22 registered firms, the commission said.

It cited the example of two white collar workers who made a reservation with the “Shanghai Gongxing Home Moving Logistics Co,” an established name in the industry, via an app.

The company claimed it would only charge 188 yuan (US$30) for the service.

The company turned out to be unlicensed. The duo was slapped with a bill of 2,880 yuan.

Another resident complained that her piano was broken by a worker while moving house. The moving company refused to compensate while the worker eventually fled.

All these companies turned out to be “fake.” They had no office, no vehicles and no license.

More than 80 percent of complaints in the industry are related to “fake” firms misusing the name of famous brands, the association said.

Therefore the association has suggested that people call 12315, the bilingual hotline of the Shanghai Consumer Rights Protection Commission, to check the license of the home moving companies before making payments.


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