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Consumer Skills
12th June 2020

NI stores are reopening: A reminder of your consumer rights

Following the news that non-essential stores are allowed to operate again from today (12 June), The Consumer Council is reminding consumers about their rights when paying for items.

Mark Crawford, Head of Consumer Empowerment and Protection at The Consumer Council, said: “With non-essential stores now reopening, and with the increase in the amount of payments made by credit and debit cards due to COVID-19, The Consumer Council is reminding consumers about the different levels of payment protection that are offered.

“If you are buying a single item costing between £100 and £30,000, you should consider paying by credit card as it gives additional protection if something goes wrong. By law, your credit card company must help in cases of faulty goods, non-delivery or if the retailer goes out of business.

“If you use your credit card for purchases costing less than £100, or your debit card for any amount, you may be able to use the card provider’s Chargeback process. This process helps you claim back your money in cases where goods are damaged, not as described or if the retailer goes out of business.

“Where possible it is best to avoid paying by cash, not just because of the current COVID-19 situation, but also due to the lack of payment protection that is offered.”

Mark added: “Giving further information on payment protection is especially important as 75% of consumers who recently took our Consumer Rights Quiz answered the credit card protection question incorrectly.”

Download a copy of the ‘Safer Ways To Pay’ leaflet, a handy guide to making payments by clicking here or call 0800 121 6022 for a free copy.


  1. Since 4 May 2020, there have been 191 responses to our Consumer Rights Quiz with 75% of consumers answering the question about credit card protection incorrectly.
  2. The Consumer Rights Quiz is available here.
  3. Our online quizzes are available here.