Woman in $145 screen-protector spat gets full refund from Lucky Plaza store

EZ Advance Trading Enterprise's manager, told the media earlier that his screen protector cost $145 because of its high quality.
EZ Advance Trading Enterprise's manager, told the media earlier that his screen protector cost $145 because of its high quality.PHOTO: LIANHE ZAOBAO

SINGAPORE - The woman in the middle of a $145 screen-protector spat with an electronics accessories store at Lucky Plaza has received a full refund, marking an end to a spat that went viral online in the past week.

Ms Denise Han, whose domestic helper was reportedly pressured into paying $145 for a screen protector, posted on Facebook on Friday (Feb 23) evening that EZ Advance Trading Enterprise has given a full refund.

"Thanks all for your concern and advice," said Ms Han, 37.

She said that on Feb 18, her domestic helper went to Lucky Plaza to get a phone screen protector, expecting it to cost $20 at most.

It was only when the protector was placed on the helper's Xiaomi Mi 5s Plus that the store employee told her that she needed to pay $145, reported Chinese-languageevening daily Lianhe Wanbao.

Ms Han said the maid was pressured into forking out the money because the store employee said everything was captured on closed-circuit television camera.

When The Straits Times visited Lucky Plaza on Friday afternoon, shop operators around said they had not heard any complaints about EZ Advance Trading Enterprise.

Store manager of phone store U-First Tel, Mr Steve Yee, said that his most expensive screen protector was a $48 one for the iPhone X. Another store manager, who did not want to be named, said her phone screen protectors cost $20 at most.

EZ Advance Trading Enterprise's manager, who gave his name only as John, told the media earlier that his screen protector cost $145 because of its high quality. When asked why other stores are selling screen protectors for much less, he said: "They are my competitors, they would say that their prices are much lower than mine."

However, he said he was willing to give a full refund to Ms Han's maid because he wanted to close the matter and move on.

Executive director of the Consumers Association of Singapore (Case), Mr Loy York Jiun, said: "Another consumer wrote in to provide feedback about a similar experience with the same shop in 2016, where the staff revealed the price of the screen protector (at $139, inclusive of a one-year warranty) only after pasting the screen protector on his phone.

"The consumer eventually paid $69 for the screen protector after forgoing the one-year warranty."

Mr Loy said: "Case would like to advise consumers to always shop around and compare prices when shopping. They have the right to say 'no' if they do not wish to buy the item. Exerting pressure on a consumer to enter into a transaction is an unfair practice under the Consumer Protection (Fair Trading) Act, and consumers can seek recourse under the Act."

The Straits Times has reached out to Ms Han for comment.