Ireland’s Guide To Money And Living

Consumer watch


Waste wars

The big news this week – the Government has agreed to freeze bin charges for the next year, in a bid to contain the situation. The Irish Waste Management Association, which represents a number of major waste collection companies in Ireland, has agreed to the price freeze, which will still allow customers to transfer to pay-by-weight if they choose. Dual billing will inform consumers about the cost of their collection under their current price plan alongside the charges under the pay-by-weight scheme. The Government’s plan also includes measures which should see waste operators absorb the cost of incontinence products “supplied by the HSE.”

“During this transition period, my Department, in partnership with the waste industry, will drive an intensive public awareness, information and promotion campaign to support customers in understanding the new system, how they can change their waste management behaviour and better manage their waste costs under the pay-by-weight system,” said Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government, Simon Coveney.

Hotel horrors

Booking a hotel, particularly abroad or in a part of the country you’ve never seen before, can be a tricky affair. Sure the photos might look nice, but you don’t really know whether you’ve booked a dream holiday or a nightmare until you arrive.

That’s the topic tackled this week by The Irish Times‘ Peter McGuire, who recently stayed at a hotel with a less than stellar experience. McGuire offers some useful advice for consumers who find themselves searching for decent place to say, from consulting sites including TripAdvisor to see what others have to say, double-checking what star classification rating the hotel is using, and complaining to Fáilte Ireland and the Competition and Consumer Protection Commission if you’re not happy.

Insurance intervention

Finally, the Government could finally intervene in the Irish insurance market, which has seen drastic increases in premiums over the past two years. According to the Irish Independent, a report will be presented to Government officials in the near future, looking at current compensation arrangements. At present, insurers are liable for claims should a competitor go into liquidation, including €90m of claims covered by Setanta Insurance before it entered liquidation in 1014.

When not writing about all things personal finance, You & Your Money's editor Conor Forrest enjoys reading, football and getting lost in an ocean of Wikipedia articles.