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Consumer Watch 181


When you have to pay for something by cash, it seems like a lot of money, but when you pay the same sum with your credit card and say to yourself, "Well, it can be in 3 or 4 installments", then it seems to be no problem whatsoever. After all, NIS 900 suddenly becomes only NIS 225 and in 4 months you have paid it off.

Now you understand the concept behind those 12, 24 & 36 installments for a piece of furniture, a TV, a new smart phone. NIS 3000 suddenly becomes only NIS 83. So beware, those 83 figures do add up after a while!


Here is an interesting use for those big plastic bags that contain the 40 and 48 toilet paper rolls. If you open the top carefully (and not cut it with a knife), then these large bags are useful for collecting all those plastic bottles that you put in your local municipal containers. These bags are also reusable. Thank you Renee.


One of my simple dishes when I have guests for a meal is to put lots of small potatoes to roast in the oven. In my local supermarket they came pre-packed and very expensive at about NIS 8 for 500 gms. I wandered further afield and found very small baby ones also pre-packed in about 1.5 kg net bags at NIS 4.50 a kg. I needed only about 2 kg, but the shop was not willing to open a bag. However, the greengrocer told me to keep the potatoes in the fridge, which I did. After using what I needed, I forgot all about them and about four weeks later found that they were still in excellent condition for using.


A little while back, there was an interesting discussion on Sky News (on YES at 103). There had been a suggestion/report from one of the well-known schools in the United Kingdom that "homework causes unnecessary pressure on children". I found this very interesting because the first time I had homework to do was when I went to Grammar School at the age of 12 and then it was only 20 minutes a day. It did increase as time went on. However, our teachers did check our work and it was good (or not!) to see the red pen marks and the remark or grade we received when we got the work back.

The need to change your credit card

We are inundated with requests to pay all our bills via standing orders on our credit cards. Sounds wonderful until you come up against the problem of finding that you need to close/change your credit card. Until now, I had been obliged to charge a minimum of NIS 3000 a month to my Discount credit card to avoid a commission charge of NIS 19.80 each month on this credit card. This had nothing to do with the commission on the bank account itself, and even then I had often had to remind Discount of this arrangement. Recently I was advised that the arrangement would be increased and that I would need to charge at least NIS 9,000 a month, otherwise I would be charged the NIS 19.80. At about the same time I decided to take out a Visa Cal Family Card for use at the Yenot Bitan supermarket and to my surprise (and I checked this out directly with Visa Cal), I found that provided I spent only NIS 800 a month there was no commission charge (which was NIS14.90).

There remained the problem of outstanding debit arrangements on the Diners Card. According to my branch of Bank Discount any debits that are considered by them to be "ho'ra'ot keva" (standing orders), such as monthly insurance payments, have to be transferred to your new/or other credit card. However, if you have paid for a purchase in a few payments then the bank will carry on debiting your account until all the payments are paid up. Whatever you do, make sure that you understand very clearly the arrangements that your bank demands.


For many years now, I have used CIF Fantastic in the yellow plastic container for washing the floors and for many other uses around the house. Recently at Superpharm I purchased a 1 + 1 bargain of the 1-liter bottles for NIS 15.10 and thought I had got a very good bargain.

However, a few days later when I was at Yenot Bitan supermarket, I found a 4-liter container – yes - four liters of the same CIF Fantastic material, for only NIS 9.90. Of course I bought it. Well, believe it or not, two days ago when I was in a different Superpharm in Herzliya, I found the same material in a 1-liter container for NIS 15.10! 



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Tuesday, 05 March 2024

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