Philadelphia ABC Report on Safelite Pricing Continues to Garner Attention
November 16, 2011
A television report by an ABC affiliate in Philadelphia that questioned the validity of an alleged Safelite pricing mechanism in which consumers reportedly pay different amounts based on ZIP code is continuing to receive attention, both in the industry and at large. A second local report from the Norristown (N.J.) Patch.com asked this question: “One Benefit to Living in Norristown? Discounts.”
“According to the Action News team, Norristown residents would be charged $258.95 for a new windshield, but customers from East Norriton would pay $298.95,” writes James Myers with Patch.com. “Folks in Chestnut Hill would be charged $338.95 for the same job.”
Many readers have expressed their opinions about the issue on the glassBYTEs.com™/AGRR™ magazine message forum.
“What's the difference in charging a price based on a consumer's ZIP code, from charging a price based on race, religion, nationality, or shoe size? All of the latter are illegal ... is the former?” asked one glassBYTEs.com/AGRR magazine reader. “In the insurance business, basing rates on a consumer's location was called 'redlining,' and it's long been disallowed.”
“[The report] stated it was in-shop at the same shop, not mobile, so why would geographical pricing play a part at all?” asked another reader. “The customer is coming to them.”
“I don't care where people come from they get the same price in shop, whether we are just down the street or 1,000 miles away,” said another. “If people want to drive here for a replacement they get the same price.”
Safelite officials have called the report “a case of an investigative journalist attempting to create scandal where there is none.”
“Like all businesses, Safelite uses a dynamic consumer pricing model that fluctuates based on many variables, such as what other competitors the customer might choose to repair or replace your vehicle glass, the availability of a technician in [an] area, and the availability of the right part in [an] area,” says Safelite spokesperson Melina Metzger. “At Safelite, we believe our consumer pricing model to be fair and offer value.”
CLICK HERE to join the conversation about this topic at the glassBYTEs.com/AGRR magazine message forum.
This story is an original story by AGRR™ magazine/glassBYTEs.com™. Subscribe to AGRR™ Magazine.
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