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Office of Competition and Consumer Protection

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UOKiK's Christmas and New Year's Eve advice

< previous | next > 28.12.2018

UOKiK's Christmas and New Year's Eve advice
  • An unwanted gift? It is up to the vendor to accept a return.
  • A failed event, hairdo or makeup? File a complaint.
  • UOKiK reminds you of your consumer rights and offers advice on how to avoid problems in the Christmas-New Year rush.

Christmas is over. In a few days we will celebrate the New Year. The Office of Competition and Consumer Protection wishes you a great New Year’s party. We offer you advice on what to do if something goes wrong.

A sweater without buttons? A toy that is not working? Missing pages in a book? Any other fault in the present? File a complaint! Ask your Santa for the receipt or another proof of purchase. You can file a complaint within two years from the purchase date. You can demand that the item is repaired, replaced or discounted. The vendor must consider such a complaint within 14 days – if they do not keep the deadline, it is assumed they have accepted the claim. If the fault is significant, for example discoloration of shoes, you can even demand a refund.

An unwanted gift? If Santa was not right about your style, or the clothing is in a wrong size, and the gift was bought online just before Christmas – it is not a problem. You have 14 days from receiving the package to return the item to the online retailer. However, if your Santa made the purchase in a local shop, the possibility of return depends solely on the vendor’s good will and it is them who define the conditions of the return – they may demand the original packaging or labels and may suggest a cash refund, a voucher or exchange for something else.

A failed hairdo or makeup? You can file a complaint. Preferably, do it as soon as you can and set the deadline for correction. You can demand the necessary correction, a cash refund, a discount... Please remember, however, that you can demand a cash refund only when the fault is significant (e.g. the hairdresser’s service ruined your hair or a beauty treatment caused an illness). If you had to repeat the beauty treatment in a different salon, you can demand a refund of the cost. You need to have receipts to prove the damage and claim compensation.

A failed New Year’s Eve party? The organiser did not provide the attractions they had promised? There were fewer hot dishes and instead of live music only records were played? File a complaint and demand a refund of a part of the money. You can find the form on the UOKiK website.

Resignation is costly. If you suddenly change your plans, give up going to a ball, a New Year’s Eve gala or a theatre performance, be aware that you will lose some or all of the money you have paid. In each case, the deduction should be adequate to the costs the organiser has incurred. In the case of a tourist trip, the resignation fee may be defined in the contract and may depend on when the resignation took place. However, if the contract’s conditions have changed significantly due to the organiser’s fault (place, price or programme), you should have the possibility to resign without paying any fees.

A lost coat? When entering a New Year’s Eve party, you notice a sign saying “the cloakroom is not responsible for lost or damaged garments,” then such a sign is actually illegal. The entrepreneur is responsible for items left in the cloakroom, whether it is paid service or not.

A failed holiday? If the conditions of a package holiday are incompatible with the contract (e.g. lower hotel standard, fewer attractions), file a complaint and demand a discount. You should do it as quickly as possible, preferably already during the holiday. However, you can claim compensation for three more years. Only after that time your claims will no longer be valid.

Christmas or New Year’s Eve spent skiing? If due to adverse weather conditions you were not able to use up your ski pass, you are entitled to a refund that is proportional to the unused entries.

Fireworks? Exercise caution. If they meet safety standards and you use them as instructed, they do not pose a threat. Do not buy fireworks from unverified sources. Before you buy fireworks, make sure that the casing is not damaged (cracks, tears, dents or bulges) and the pyrotechnic mixture is not coming out. Make sure that the elements are well assembled and that they do not move or fall out, and the fuse is secured with an orange cover or packaging. Look for instructions – they should be written in Polish and contain information on how to set off the fireworks, as well as stating the manufacturer and presenting the warnings. Read them in advance instead of waiting until midnight. Make sure that setting off fireworks in a given place and at a given time is permitted. It is essential to observe the manufacturer’s recommendations. Keep a safe distance. Never lean over the charge. Choose a place in which you will not hurt anyone or damage anything when setting off the fireworks. Make sure there are no obstacles on the firework’s flight path. Remember that pyrotechnical products can only be bought by adults.

Consumer support

You will find examples of complaint and contract cancellation forms on the UOKiK’s website. Should you encounter problems when asserting your rights, please visit the Trade Inspection Authority or a municipal or county consumer ombudsman. Free of charge consultation is available on the phone at +48 801 440 220 and +48 22 290 89 16 or via e-mail at [SCODE]cG9yYWR5QGRsYWtvbnN1bWVudG93LnVva2lrLmdvdi5wbA==[ECODE].

Consumer support:

Phone: +48 801 440 220 or +48 22 290 89 16 – consumer helpline
Email: [SCODE]cG9yYWR5QGRsYWtvbnN1bWVudG93LnBs[ECODE]
Branches of the Consumer Federation
Consumer ombudsmen – in your town or county

Additional information for the media:

UOKiK Press Office
Pl. Powstańców Warszawy 1, 00-950 Warszawa, Poland
Phone: +48 695 902 088, +48 22 55 60 246
Email: [SCODE]Yml1cm9wcmFzb3dlQHVva2lrLmdvdi5wbA==[ECODE]
Twitter: @UOKiKgovPL

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