内容

我在加国消费保护战中愈战愈勇
I‘ve become a happy and satisfied consumer as I embark on self-protection journey in Canada


 
几年前一名曾在青岛一家餐厅用餐的顾客之经历在大陆社交网站引起轰动。当结算账单上标明一盘炒大虾价格为1520时,他简直不敢相信自己的眼睛,这菜单上不是明明标着不是38元吗?可餐馆解释说,那是一只虾的价格!当哭笑不得的他拒绝支付这高昂的价格时,餐馆老板拿出一根长棍,喧声夺人地要开打。这名顾客事后曾向当地警察局和行业监管机构投诉,但都以不了了之而告终。

A bad taste left in the mouth of a Chinese dinner at a restaurant in Qingdao has made waves in Chinese social media. The customer faced a bill shock when the restaurant slapped him with 1520 Yuan charge for a dish of pawns marked at 38 Yuan on the menu, citing an excuse that no one can accept. When he refused to pay, the restaurant owner reportedly pulled out a stick and threatened to beat him up. His complaints against this unscrupulous merchant with the local authorities – including the police and industry bureau ended in vain. 



在一个缺乏消费保护机制的国家里,这名顾客的经历不过是冰山之一角。作为一名来自中国大陆的移民,我对那里消费者的无奈受欺现象震惊不已,并对在加国作为一名普通消费者所享受权力保护感激万分。加国消费者提供了多种保护机制,让他们可以在不用花费一分钱的情况下通过各种渠道,途径投诉,伸冤。互联网的普及也给消费者们提供了曝光坏分子的机会,迫使加国的零售商们的商业行为更符合道德规范,也使加国消费市场的“诚信风气”日益普及。

In a marketplace lacking robust consumer protection mechanism, his experience is just the tip of the iceberg. As an immigrant from China, I was stunned by the consumers’ vulnerabilities in my home country and feel blessed that I enjoy better rights’ protection as an individual customer in Canada. Plenty of mechanisms are available for Canadian consumers to file complaints and seek recourses – at no expenses of their own. The rising of the internet has empowered consumers to name and shame the few bad apples, fueling a more prevalent consumer protection culture in the Canadian retail landscape.



在我的“消费者可用合同优势保护自己”一文中提及,我曾因与贝尔公司的一起纠纷获得赔偿,而这场胜利仅仅是我的自我保护历程中所获得奖杯之一枚。对加国消费保护法规有所了解的我,对加国消费市场的道德水准和公平度充满信心,在当我认为被某些不良商业行为欺凌的情况下,为保护自身利益而奋起反击,并几乎赢得每场战役的胜利。

My victory battle with Bell – which I revealed in a consumer protection article has brought me one of the many trophies in my self-protection journey. Over the past, armed with the knowledge of consumer’s rights and holding a belief that justice prevails in the Canadian marketplace, I’ve launched numerous battles with business entities which I believed, have taken advantage of me, and I’ve won each and every one of them.  



今年初,当我在信用卡账单上连续5个月出现一项$50元款项,是由一家电影观赏网站划走的。我曾不小心在该网站上注册了用户,但以为之后曾成功地取消了注册。出于对拿不回钱的担心,我在按照信用卡上列出的号码拨打了电话前,做好了打一场硬仗的准备,并反复多次练习了电话说辞,但仅仅在我简单地向对方表示根本没有在该网站上看过一场电影后,对方很快就答应取消我的注册并保证全额退款。两个星期后,我的下一次信用卡账单上出现了来自该网站的$200元的进账。

I experienced a bill shock early this year when I found a $50 bill for several months in a row on my credit card statement. It was charged by a streaming movie website that I mistakenly signed up for and wasn’t successful in canceling it as I assumed.  Worrying that I would have a hard time to get my money back, I prepared for a fierce battle and rehearsed a persuasive speech several times before I picked up the phone and dialed the number on the credit card statement.  Surprisingly, I’ve got an instant confirmation for cancellation and a promise of full refund just by telling them that I’d never watched a movie from the site.  Two weeks later, a $200 credit appeared on my next statement.  



如果你认为在这件事上我的确是一名无辜的受害者,完全有理由拿到所有退款,那么当我要求BMO退还数月的账户管理费时,就不那么理直气壮了。由于我的疏忽大意使账户的存款额降至能享受免费账户的最低标准之下。但没想到,我仅仅通过致电银行客服中心就轻而易举地拿回了数月的账户管理费退款。其原因很简单,这位客服人员一心一意地替客户着想,竭尽全力地让客户满意。

If you think that I was innocent enough in this case that I deserved my money back, you might be less sympathetic when I asked for the reverse of a premium plan fee charged from my BMO account. I had failed to maintain the minimum balance to wave service fee– due to my unconscious mistakes. But unexpectedly, I’ve got a total refund of five months’ fees back, just through the help of a call center agent –who has gone out of his way to ensure that I remain a happy customer with the bank.


我在文章中所述的与贝尔公司的那一胜仗在读者中引起共鸣,一些读者也将那些遭到不公待遇的故事在《大中报》网站分享。 一名读者的评论吸引了我的眼球:“这件事要是发生在中国,(她)别想拿回一分钱!”

My article outlining my victory battle with Bell seemed resonating well with readers, with some sharing their success stories of fighting with business practices deemed unfair to them. One reader’s comment has immediately caught my attention: “(She) won't’ get a penny back if this thing happens in China.”

在一个只有特权和富裕阶层能享受奢侈物品和高等服务的国家里,其法律和法规也是仅仅保护这些高高在上的人士的。普通中国消费者没有财务能力和资源寻求法律途径,而其不健全的法律系统也无力保护受害者。

It is unsurprised that in a country where powerful elites and well-heeled individuals enjoy luxury services and quality products, the laws and regulations serve to protect the privileged few. Average Chinese consumers lack the financial means to seek redress, and the broken legal system fails to protect the victims.



与让无辜消费者易受无良商人欺凌和盘剥的中国消费市场相比,加国向普通消费者提供了更强有力的保护机制。了解消费者权利,并利用这一知识利器保护自己对许多新移民来说是一个奇妙而充满刺激的新鲜经历。我在自我保护历程中所获取了一枚又一枚奖杯,让我成为一名高兴、满足而充满自信的加国消费者。

Canada provides much stronger consumer protection system than China -- a country that leaves consumers vulnerable to the bullying and exploitation practices by unscrupulous businesses. Understanding consumers’ rights and using the knowledge to protect their interest is an eye-opening and exciting experience for many newcomers in the country. The trophies I claimed one after another as I embark on the self-protection journey have made me a very satisfied, happy and confident Canadian consumer.




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