Coles customers accuse supermarket of dodgy specials 'tactic'

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Coles customers have been left confused after noticing the 'Special' price listed on some of the yellow tags at the supermarket was the same as the normal price hidden underneath.

Taking to Facebook, three Coles customers noticed the 'Special' tag on different items all displayed the same price as before.

One shopper spotted gluten free tacos for $8, as per the yellow 'Special' tag. But the shelf price, or the normal price, indicated they were $8 to begin with.

"Explain yourself Coles," they wrote.

Another person noticed the same thing with tortilla chips, claiming the 'Special' tag was "misleading".

Customers noticed the Coles tickets – pictured here – had the same price on them. Here's why.
Coles customers found the 'Special' price on the yellow ticket matched the price on the shelf. Source: Facebook

A third shopper discovered the same thing with bottles of tomato sauce on display.

"New tactics with the yellow specials. Coles have lost the plot now," he wrote on the company's Facebook page where he posted photos of the mishap.

Yahoo News Australia understands the price on the Specials tags have been attributed to "genuine human error" with a Coles spokesperson reiterating the stress and heavy workload supermarket employees have faced during the Omicron outbreak with staff and product shortages plaguing the sector for weeks.

Critical workers and staff have been forced into isolation, meaning less staff on the supermarket floor.

Customers noticed the Coles tickets – pictured here – had the same price on them. Here's why.
Customers noticed the tickets advertising a 'special' price matched the price on the shelf and shared pictures to Facebook. Source: Facebook

Earlier in January, Coles reintroduced product limits to select items due to supply chain issues and customers being told to stock up in case they were forced into isolation.

"Our amazing, hard working team members have done an outstanding job to keep our stores operating as an essential service as we enter our third year of the pandemic," a Coles spokesperson told Yahoo News Australia.

"Mistakes happen and we’re grateful to our customers who have brought this to our attention so we can fix it."

Empty shelves pictured at a Coles supermarket aisle.
Coles and other supermarkets around Australia have been impacted by staff shortages due to Covid-19. Source: AAP

While the Specials tags at Coles were a mistake, it's not the first time an Aussie giant supermarket has been asked to explain sale tickets.

In 2019, Woolworths explained the meaning behind the 'Price Dropped' tickets in stores after a customer found coffee which said the price had dropped to $16. However, the customer said the coffee was always $16.

In response to the customers post, Woolworths cleared up the confusion.

"We understand that the coffee you purchase normally costs $16 and that's what our ticket states," a Woolies spokesperson explained back in 2019.

"It states that the coffee had cost $19 back in 2016, but the price has dropped since and is now $16."

Yahoo News Australia understands the tickets were a human error. Source: AAP
Yahoo News Australia understands the tickets were a human error. Source: AAP

One customer defended Woolworths' 'Price Dropped' tickets at the time and said from a customer's perspective, they liked the transparency.

"Woolworths just highlights the lower price and how long it has been at that price with a price dropped shelf label," the person wrote.

"Personally, as a customer, I think it’s a great thing that both Coles and Woolies have been able to keep prices down on some lines especially with a lot of other products rising in price."

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