One of my more astute observations is that no one knows the true price of anything (aired in this column more than once, but it is a universal truth that I don’t think anyone other than me makes a fuss about).
The subject was prompted again by a conversation with Hitendra Patel (appearing in the PayPoint piece). He maintains that not only do people not know the real price of anything, they don’t even bother to look at the price on the tin any more.
“No one cares about prices. Eggs used to be £1.29. Now they are £1.69 and no one questions it. I’ve had four customers in a row. Each spent between £7-£8 and each gave me two £10 notes.”
In case you’re thinking well, lucky old Hitendra - obviously, trades in an affluent bit of London - he describes his customer base as: “Totally council estate. They should be watching their pennies.”
Is it down to sometimes confusing promotions? He doesn’t think so, although he cites a 100g jar of Kenco going from £3.49 to £2.49 to £3.19 and then back down to £2.49 in the space of a scant few months. I know it’s something of a commodity, but even so
He does do the Costcutter promotions, but struggles to clear them in the three-week period, with the exception of the crisps. “They always go.”
So Romford, original home of the white stiletto (I live next door to Romford, therefore I’m allowed to say this) is looking after its health. Good to know.