As a voice for consumers, the Jersey Consumer Council works on behalf of the island’s consumers as a research and policy-based champion for good consumer market conduct. We investigate and publicise anomalies in consumer affairs and provide Islanders with accurate and timely information to help them make informed decisions.


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Energy & Fuel
07 December 2023

Driving home for Christmas – some good news for motorists at last?

Some good news for consumers before Christmas - our forecourts have all either frozen their fuel prices or, in some cases, put them down. Let’s hope it continues through December. Make sure you check out our site and app to compare Jersey’s fuel prices before filling up this weekend.  
Living Costs
05 December 2023

Increased freight costs proposed for 2024 - what does this mean for the consumer?

Condor Ferries are proposing a 19% hike in their freight costs next year. We’re worried that this increase could be a major blow for consumers, with retailers likely to be forced to pass on these costs to Islanders. Our Chairman, Carl Walker, predicts said: “Ultimately, any increase in freight costs will always filter down, so this increase in freight costs is likely to be a major blow for Islanders, with retailers likely to be forced to pass these costs on to consumers by raising their prices even more.” Condor are being asked to justify their price rises by the Government and the Jersey Consumer Council support this enquiry. We’ll keep a close eye on this situation and will continue to check retail prices. We continue to encourage Islanders to shop around to get the best prices and to vote with their feet if they feel that prices in certain stores are getting too high.
24 November 2023

Top tips for Black Friday shopping

AHHHH, it’s Black Friday, so many bargains to buy buy buy… When it comes to tackling Black Friday we’re advising you to stay calm and don’t feel under the pressure to buy. To help you take on this busy Christmas shopping day, we’re sharing some Which? magazine tips that will help you bargain shop wisely. Don’t Panic The pressure of Black Friday can leave you feeling pressured into buying quickly. But you don’t need to hurry. Which? say that the majority of products remain the same price or even cheaper after Black Friday. So take your time.   Check if the deal is real By using price tracking websites such as CamelCamelCamel for Amazon or PriceRunner for wider websites you can see comparisons of what really is the best deal before you commit.   Research the product Many shoppers admit that they don’t research the product that they buy during Black Friday for fear of losing out on the deal. Shop calmly and use reviews and price trackers to make sure you’re getting the best product instead of a dud product.   Watch out for hidden costs Unexpected extra costs may be added at the checkout to bump your price up. Some online retailers use a buy now or click and collect button. Always go into your basket and check out slowly, make sure you check your tax and shipping fees before you pay.   Know your rights Lots of consumers regret their impulse buys on Black Friday. Always check your returns policy. Buying online gives you more rights - you usually have the right to change your mind and cancel your order for up to 14 days from when you receive the goods. Make sure you keep all proofs of purchase.
14 November 2023

Worried you’re being charged both VAT and GST?

With online retailers now charging GST on purchases, we’ve been contacted by many consumers who are worried they’re unfairly being charged both GST and VAT. We’re trying to build a list of those online retailers who are, genuinely, wrongly charging Islanders both VAT and GST so that we can work with the Government to stop this from happening. If you encounter any examples of this, please take a screenshot or photograph of the checkout/basket and email it to  However, here’s a couple of things that you should be aware of: Incorrectly labelled VAT A few consumers have been in touch to tell us they’re incorrectly being charged VAT. However, when we’ve looked into their cases, we’ve found that they’re in fact being charged GST, but that the retailer has simply incorrectly labelled the tax as ‘VAT’. A simple way to check whether the extra charge you can see is VAT or GST is to download the ‘VAT calculator’ app to your smartphone or mobile device. It allows you to put in the amount and then either add or deduct VAT. It then tells you what the price should be once the VAT has either been deducted or added. This will help you identify whether it’s actually VAT being applied, or whether it’s simply GST incorrectly labelled as VAT. Or, of course, you can always do some old-fashioned arithmetic instead – if it’s VAT it’ll be 20% added on, whereas if it’s GST it’ll only be 5%. To work out what a VAT-free price should be, divide the total amount by 1.2. Sometimes consumers are being charged just VAT, which of course we do not pay. If this happens to you, we suggest that you go back to the retailer and attach the link to the UK Government notice on VAT, which states: 2.7 Countries that are part of the UK for VAT purposes. The Channel Islands are not part of the UK for fiscal (VAT) purposes. Supplies of goods sent to the Channel Islands are regarded as exports for VAT purposes and may be zero-rated if the conditions set out in paragraphs 3.3 or 3.4 are met. Of course, this may not work, the retailer might still charge you VAT. Then your only recourse is to take your business elsewhere and keep looking around until you find a retailer who is prepared to deduct VAT – they are out there. Online book prices will now increase When you purchase many items online, especially on Amazon, you’ll notice that the final price will end up being lower than the original price listed. That’s because, even though 5% GST is now being added, the 20% VAT is also being removed, so the price still goes down. However, there is at least one item we’ve found that’s the exception to that rule: books. We’ve heard from a few consumers who are worried that every time they buy a book online, they’re now being charged GST on top of VAT. That’s because when you now buy a book online, the final price always ends up being higher than the original price listed. However, it’s not an error. The reason is because, in the UK, books are exempt from VAT – which means that the original price listed is not inclusive of any VAT. This means that GST now has to be added to these purchases for Jersey residents, but no VAT is removed, so, as a result, the price ends up going up, instead of down. You can see more information about this, and other items that are exempt from UK VAT, here:
Living Costs
10 November 2023

No reduced-price Christmas stamps this festive season

For the first time in many years, Jersey Post has announced that it will not be offering reduced-price Christmas stamps this festive season. Last year, numerous Islanders contacted us to express their disappointment about the fact that the deadline to use these stamps had been reduced to 25 November – including for Christmas mail to Jersey and the UK – with many saying that it was too early for them to take advantage of the scheme. However, rather than make the deadline later again, this year the stamps have been scrapped altogether. Jersey Post announced the decision earlier this week, and have included it in their Christmas posting guide, which is currently being delivered to all homes in the Island. They announced: “This year, Jersey Post is not offering reduced rate stamps. However, by keeping in mind the challenges of the cost of living for Islanders, there will be no increase to the 100g letter and large letter rates of local and UK postage in 2024.’ A number of consumers have contacted us about the decision, with one saying: “It’s very disappointing, the deadline to use these stamps has been getting earlier and earlier every year, and now they’ve been scrapped altogether. After all the problems we’ve had with our post this year, since the removal of the mail plane, it would have been a nice goodwill gesture for Islanders.” Another Islander told us: “I’m a pensioner, and stamps are really expensive since the latest rise earlier in the year. Post to the UK now takes weeks because the mail plane is gone. It’s ridiculous. I love sending Christmas cards, but with no reduced-price stamps it’s going to be expensive this year." Jersey Post has offered reduced-priced stamps in the lead-up to Christmas for a number of years. When the scheme first launched, it was available into the second week of December, though a couple of years ago the deadline was brought forward to 2 December, and last year Islanders were frustrated when it was reduced further, to 25 November. We contacted Jersey Post to pass on Islanders’ concerns and disappointment. Julie Thomas, Managing Director, Postal and Logistics told us: “We understand our customers will be disappointed with Jersey Post’s decision to discontinue discounted stamps in the run up to Christmas. “Along with the operational complexities of offering a specific stamp for a very limited period, Jersey Post felt that freezing the price of stamps for the first weight step for Local and UK mail for a whole year would provide longer lasting benefit for the widest group of customers, many of whom do not send Christmas cards at all. “We hope customers understand this decision and that they can enjoy using this year’s Jersey artist themed Christmas stamps which go on sale on 11 November.” You can see all of the information about Christmas postage, and Jersey Post’s recommended last posting dates, on their website. Jersey Post has also announced that it will be offering its Mail Retention service free of charge to Islanders affected by Storm Ciarán who are currently unable to receive mail at home. Any Islanders wishing use the service should email
At Home
07 November 2023

Insurance tips following Storm Ciarán

We’re getting lots of questions about insurance claims after Storm Ciarán. So, here are some tips you may find useful, both for now and for future considerations about what kind of insurance cover you might need, as well as advice if your insurer isn’t paying out. Vehicles: To successfully claim for damage to your vehicle from a storm, you need to have a fully comprehensive insurance policy. This should also entitle you to a loan car during the repairs. Unfortunately, third party cover only covers damage your car makes to others. Buildings: Buildings Insurance will cover storm damage to your home. It should also cover any permanent fixtures and fittings, such as kitchens, doors, windows etc.  They should also cover accommodation costs during home repairs. Most policies exclude fences, sheds, and outhouses. Home contents: Contents insurance (not buildings insurance) covers all the moveable items in your home, such as furniture, electronic items, clothes and jewellery. There is usually a cap on single item values and large excesses. It will also cover emergency purchases, such as clothes. Carpets and flooring can be covered in either buildings or contents insurance, so you'll need to check your policies. Insurance complaint: If your insurer isn’t paying out and you think you have a strong case, ask for their complaints policy and follow their appeals process. If it's still no good, advise them that you’re taking the matter to the relevant ombudsman, which will vary depending on where your insurer is based. As most insurance companies are based in the UK, most will be regulated by the UK Financial Ombudsman. However, some will be regulated by the Channel Islands Financial Ombudsman Service. Your insurer will be able to tell you who your ombudsman authority is, so you know who to appeal to.  Rental: If you’re in rental accommodation your landlord should be covered under their buildings insurance policy to cover the cost of temporary accommodation. You should not have to bear the cost. However, you will need contents insurance to claim for any of your personal belongings. Contact us: And finally, if you're in any doubt or having problems with your insurer, please contact the Jersey Consumer Council who will happily advise you on the best course of action. Email us on or call 611161.