Canadians have often been known for being polite, soft, apologetic, charitable and generally friendly. But could these nice attributes be the very reason why Canadians are also such sloppy and not very wise consumers? Unlike their neighbors to the south, they let retailers and companies gouge and walk all over them, and not say or voice their opinion? It could very well be.
That is all about to change. Looks like this soft Canadian attitude is starting to change, at least from a consumers’ prospective. Good news for the consumer. Bad for retailers. It is time we dropped our nice and friendly labels. As consumers, we need to be informed, proactive and speak with our money and not hearts.
Canadians are simply tired and fed up with being gouged, whether it is at the car dealership, buying airfare, filling up gas, buying shoes and electronics etc.
This frustrating was magnified and given an extra boost yesterday, thanks to a new report from the ‘Conference Board of Canada. This report tells that about five million Canadians now cross the U.S. border by land annually to fly out of American airports. Think about that number for a second and the potential lost revenues for the Canadian economy overall.
In reaction to this report, I read and heard from many frustrated consumers, each giving real examples of how much money they saved by flying out of the US. The savings were close to 100% or more in some cases, and averaging at least 30% or more in most cases. This was such a one-sided argument. Virtually no one argued in favor of our airports and airlines and why they charge this much.
Canadians’ new ‘War on Gouging’ (#WarOnGouging)
It is time Canadians start a new war. An economic war. Unfortunately, one against their own country. It is the new ‘war on gouging.’
I, for one, want to spend every penny I have in Canada. In fact, I don’t remember ever crossing the boarder strictly for shopping or flying out of the US. But after hearing and reading all these stories, I feel like I don’t have a choice and will start joining this battle against gouging. Enough is enough. We Canadians deserve better for being so supportive and patriotic about our economy. Buffalo and other cross-boarder US cities will be more than glad to take our business, at this time of continuous bad news for the US economy.
The government has to act too. They will not only be doing what we elected them to do, they will also score huge political points. This hits the pocketbook of most Canadians, on a daily and hourly basis, and it is the government’s responsibility to step in and do something. They can’t just simply blame it on ‘market forces’
Until then, Canadians will and should look south for their shopping and transportation needs. If your house is constantly robbed by a thief, and that thief happens to be your neighborhood’s local baker, you wouldn’t be foolish enough to buy from him. That is what Canadians are unintentionally and irrationally doing: supporting and buying from the very retailers and businesses that are robbing them off their hard earned money. And let us not cut the government some slack here, as they deserve a fair share of blame, given all these ever increasing taxes and fees.
If consumers bands together, the ‘war on gouging’ will be decisive and quick. Otherwise, we will continue to be gouged.