A PENSIONER is calling on shopping giant Sainsbury’s to reconsider its customer service structure after she was charged £1212.40 for a packet of biscuits. 

Susan Hunter was astounded last month after realising her online delivery – supposed to have cost £79.54 – amounted to £1288.19

The 74-year-old and her husband Robert, 76, have relied heavily on online delivery services as both shield from coronavirus due to their age group and as Robert recovers from cancer.

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Between driving Robert to the Beatson for his therapy sessions in the afternoon, Susan spent a week of her mornings attempting to get in touch with an appropriate customer service advisor that could reverse the fee. 

She said: “It was just so stressful, and even more so because we couldn’t get speaking to people to resolve the problem. 

“Although they have a customer care line, getting through to it is not easy.

“I actually even tried phoning the head office in London, then it said this number doesn’t take calls. It’s as though they’ve shut half of their lines down.

“I know they must be up to their eyes in it at the moment, but they’re also making an absolute fortune. Problems like this should have a solid system in place to reverse them.”

Sainsbury’s eventually reimbursed the Clarkston couple almost one month after the funds were deducted from their account.

Thankfully, the retired shopkeepers had enough money to tide them over, but are warning a simpler system should be in place to prevent a similar problem from happening again.

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Susan said: “Maybe if someone didn’t have the money there it was taken out, it would have left them unable to pay their council tax or left them strapped without food or unable to pay rent or mortgage.

“I hope this doesn’t happen again. I wouldn’t like it to happen to anyone else, it could give somebody a heart attack or a stroke or something. Times are quite difficult enough as they are.

“I would like to see customers have access to a reliable telephone number that you can get through to if something like this happens. 

“We really struggled to get through to a team member. That part of any business should be easily accessible for customers.

“I used to have a shop and if you’d have done something like that, you’d obviously see it right away. 

“What would have been done is it would have been cancelled immediately and then you’d start the transaction again."

Robert said: “Had that been an OAP or even an elderly widow on her own, or somebody on a basic state pension, it would have cleared them out. 

“Susan was certainly on the phone a lot trying to sort it out. It should be a simple process of resolving a mistake on their behalf.”

Sainsbury’s have since apologised to the couple for the “isolated mistake”.

A spokeswoman said: “We apologise to Ms Hunter for her experience and for any inconvenience caused. 

“This appears to be an isolated mistake and we are looking into how it happened.”