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Shopping Online helps the environment!

Buying goods over the internet can mean bargain prices - if you shop around. It gives you access to all sorts of things that aren't available in your local high street, and you don't have to waste fuel and time driving for miles to find it. There are some drawbacks. For example, the Advertising Standards Authority has limited powers to deal with internet adverts. And it's not always easy to tell where sites are based or whether you're covered by UK law.

Look at several sites to check prices. Make sure you know the full cost, including postage, any import duty etc. If you don't recognise a company name, see if any friends have heard of it, search the internet for references, or ask about it in a relevant newsgroup. Print out adverts, confirmation messages and e-mails as a record. If you don't receive confirmation, or a delivery time, e-mail and ask for one.

Always look for contact details, such as a telephone number and geographical address.

Paying by credit card gives you protection. Check your card statements carefully, especially if prices are quoted in a foreign currency.

Using UK sites makes it easier to enforce your rights but '.uk' in the site name doesn't necessarily mean it's a UK site! Check for a UK contact address and prices in sterling. If you're in any doubt, e-mail the company and ask.

Before inputting your credit or debit card details, make sure you are using a secure site. There will usually be amessage on-screen telling you about a site's security status.Look for a padlock icon at the bottom of the screen

Why not get your groceries by shopping online? It's more environmentally friendly for one van to drop off a number of deliveries to different homes in an area, than for everyone to make their individual way to the supermarket. At the time of compiling this guide, Tesco will deliver goods direct to online customers' doors, if they live within a certain distance of one of their stores.. Waitrose will deliver organic fruit and vegetable boxes, and a variety of other goods, anywhere in the UK. Sainsbury's online delivery scheme is promising an expanded service, so it's worth checking on progress from time to time.

Shopping Online Advice

Tips on how to avoid pitfalls

Some of these pages are taken from Derbyshire County Council 'Smartliving' pages and comes with the following disclaimer

'The contents of Smartliving are drawn from a wide variety of sources. While we have made every effort to ensure accuracy, DCC will not be held responsible for any errors in this publication. Views expressed, or mention of any organisation in Smartliving should not necessarily be
regarded as an indication of Derbyshire County Council's official policy or support.'

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