Qantas singled out for Shonky honour

By: Jason Whittaker


Qantas public relations executives will be crying in their coffee cups after the airline was awarded a Choice Shonky Award

Qantas public relations executives will be crying in their coffee cups after the airline was awarded a Choice Shonky Award for its sky-high credit card surcharge.

The consumer advocate magazine awards the Shonkys annually in celebration of "dodgy" goods and services.

Qantas was given a Shonky for its $7.70 credit card surcharge per passenger for domestic flights, which Choice says is way above the average one percent fee card companies levy for such transactions.

"The Shonky Awards highlight what is frankly ridiculous about some of the worst examples of sub-standard products and services Choice reviews each year," says Choice spokesman Christopher Zinn.

"While the ‘winners’ might be cringing in the boardrooms we want consumers to enjoy a good laugh and be more demanding before accepting tricky labelling, bogus fees and charges and worthless devices."

Qantas joins Uncle Tobys, which was recognised for reducing the size of its Oat Crisp Honey cereal packets by 14 percent while making the new container appear almost identical in size. The price per 100 grams rose by 10 percent.

Two liquid chicken stocks were given a joint Shonky award, both for being reconstituted using stock powder and water—just like the much-cheaper stock cube alternative.

Of the eight awards one went to the Tiffany food processor which in broke in three as it failed to shred tasty cheese. Another went to cosmetics giant L’Oreal for using dubious statistics to promote its Elvive hair care products.

2009 SHONKY AWARD WINNERS
Qantas
For its sky-high $7.70 credit card surcharge per passenger

Aldi’s Chefs’ Cupboard and Massell liquid stocks
For charging a premium for stock cubes and water

Reegen Micro Plug
Claims to reduce your power bills by 30 percent – it doesn’t

Loreal Elvive Shampoo, Conditioner and Serum
For dubious statistics and pseudoscience

Uncle Tobys Honey Oat Crisps
For shrinking the product but not the price

Tiffany FP 807 Food processor
For not being up to the job of shredding cheese

Tel Pacific prepaid phone cards
For hidden fees and charges

Credit protection insurance
For not being worth the paper it’s written on

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