Saturday, 15 January 2011

Are Pandora ripping us off?

For any man reading this, unless of course you are married (in which case you are not excused), it is unlikely you will have heard about the phenomena that is Pandora.

For those that do not know what Pandora is think back to the 1970's and try to remember those charm bracelets that were all the rage. Pandora is the latest incarnation of them.

All you need to do is purchase a standard bracelet (or necklace) and then start buying beads or charms to add to it. Beads come in a whole variety of materials and shapes and as you might have guessed are somewhat costly.

Before Christmas I bought my wife a bracelet and as an example the cheapest charms were £23.00 but the more luxurious beads ran up to several hundreds. (Imagine a bracelet could take somewhere between twenty and thirty beads and you will start to get a picture of the money involved).

Although there are other bead manufacturers around Pandora has this covered. You see, their beads are not interchangeable as they have a thread inside which prevents other makes being added to their host jewellery.

Now despite the cost and lack of interchangeability (or perhaps because of it) Pandora are huge.

To see how big they are you should have seen the queues in the post-Chistmas sales. We visited Derby Westfield to see the line stretching out of the shop and around the outside. Customers were waiting over two hours to buy a charm.

I did mention to Clare at the time that this sort of collectable was likely to go as quick as it came and I hope I have been proved right...and here is the reason.

Clare went today to choose a new bead for her bracelet. She didn't want to pay too much and had decided to just have one of the cheapest silver beads (remember I said they were £23.00 before Christmas).

Guess what? As a universal policy Pandora have increased the price of those self same beads to £30.00!

Now I appreciate that VAT has increased by 2.5% and in general things have gotten more expensive however this is a more than 30% increase! The only possible reason (as far as I see it) for this rise is because the company are currently riding on a high and have a product with a limited shelf life in terms of popularity - so they are cashing in while they can.

There can be no reason for price rises of this magnitude by Pandora other than it's because they think they can get away it.

Clare and I have discussed this and certainly won't be buying and more Pandora. I only hope that others follow suit and refuse to be treated like idiots by taking away their custom.

1 comment:

  1. Let's hope Pandora get to read this and that they are able to give a convincing reason why!