The Consumer Council of Zimbabwe (CCZ) has warned consumers from being enticed to take loans and overspending ahead of the Christmas and New Year holidays as this could lead them into a debt trap.
In a statement CCZ said consumers should spend their hard-earned money in a wise manner and not be gullible to every special consumer product on offer.
“Many consumers are enticed to get loans from loan sharks and chimbadzo only to get themselves stuck in a debt cycle and also finding themselves unable to pay January school fees,” said CCZ.
“What we are urging consumers is that they should live within their means. CCZ takes this opportunity to urge consumers to know their rights and demand them.” The body said consumers should be aware there is limited money in everybody’s pockets and also take note of the increase in the price of food basket in the last two months.
“Because Zimbabwe is a cash economy, people have a tendency to carry a lot of cash on them and thieves and pickpockets are aware of this and there would want to make profit where they have not worked,” said CCZ.
CCZ urged consumers to be wary of “bogus” specials offered by shops and also to ensure they check for sell-by dates and poor quality products.
The cost of living for a low-income urban earner of a family of six as projected by the CCZ monthly basket, increased to $540,80 in October from $527,52 the previous month.
The food basket rose from $145,09 in September to $158,18 in October.