Woolworths here in Botswana are selling hummus. Clearly labelled is a special offer of "2 for R25.00".
In case you can't find your glasses, here it is closer up.
Excellent. We all love a bargain.
Except it isn't a bargain here in Botswana.
Firstly no price in Pula could be found, only the Rand special offer price. However, when we offered to pay in Rand, we were politely told No. That's a contravention of Section 13 (1) (e) of the Consumer Protection Regulations which says that a
"supplier who offers a commodity or service to a consumer fails to meet minimum standards and specifications if" [...] "the advertisement or representation of a commodity or service is made with the intent not to dispose of the commodity or service as advertised or represented"If it's priced in Rand then they must sell it in Rand. Simple as that.
However we then get on to the bigger issue. The price they really sell it in Pula.
Let's do the maths. Knock off the 14% VAT South African rate, convert the price to Pula using Thursday's cash exchange rate and then add on our 12% VAT.
Depending on what exchange rate you choose, you get to a Pula price of anything between P18.80 and P20.98.
That's a markup of between 76% and 97%.
Nearly double the price, just for the privilege of buying in Botswana? Are they serious? I think a call to Woolworths in SA is called for, don't you?