Thursday, April 18, 2024

Essential items purchasing is a real struggle

Flashbacks seem to be occurring for a lot of Aussies, as they struggle to find available essential items in the shops.

A recent Finder survey shows that one in three shoppers have been unable to buy essential items – equivalent to 5.8 million Aussies leaving the shops empty handed.

More specifically, one in five (19%) struggle to buy toilet paper or tissues when they visited the supermarket.

Other products that shoppers are finding difficult to find include, hand sanitiser and soap, with one in seven (15%) unable to find these at the shops.

“As the shelves start to empty people feel the need to stock up on essentials, which turns consumers’ fears of shortages into a self-fulfilling prophecy,” says personal finance expert at Finder, Bessie Hassan.

“Many supermarkets are not designed to handle the purchase volume we are seeing from panic buyers.

“If you are feeling the need to stock up, look to retailers like Costco or Amazon that are set up to offer bulk purchase options, rather than purchasing en masse from a supermarket.”

Masks in Victoria

On the day it was announced that face masks would be compulsory in parts of Victoria, Finder witnessed a 480% spike in face mask traffic in just 24 hours.

“Face masks have become essential for many Aussies – not just Victorians,” says Ms Hassan.

“Sadly, these spikes in demand have resulted in price gouging from some businesses. If you opt to shop online, make sure you compare prices before finalising your purchase.

“It’s crucial to keep security front of mind wherever you shop online.  Look for the padlock symbol in the URL bar before entering any payment details and check that a seller is reputable before you buy,” Ms Hassan advises.

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