Online group buying

Online ‘daily deals’ and group buying websites are channels for consumers to buy goods or services at discount prices. Before you take up an offer from these websites, check the offer thoroughly to make sure you get what you pay for.

What are discount websites?

Some websites (such as Catch of the Day, Shopping Square,, Deals Direct and Crazy Sales) offer discount deals directly to customers for a limited time, such as ‘daily deals’. Stocks may be limited and items may sell out before the offer ends.

What is a voucher website?

These sites, also referred to by some people as ‘daily deals’ or ‘deal of the day’, sell vouchers or coupons which can be exchanged for goods and services at discount prices. In most cases, the vouchers are offered on the condition that a minimum number of buyers take up the deal.

If you take up an offer, you will usually be asked to enter your payment details online. A voucher is then emailed to you to print off and claim your purchase direct from the business. Many of these websites require online membership.

How to protect yourself when buying from discount websites

To make sure you get what you pay for:

  • find out exactly what goods and/or services are being offered and what is not included in the deal
  • read the fine print by checking the terms and conditions of sales on the website carefully, including expiry dates on vouchers and any black out periods that might apply to certain services
  • check with the website to see if they give refunds if the business supplying the goods or services goes out of business before vouchers are redeemed
  • be prepared for delays when making bookings. Group sales can create a lot of demand.

If your online discount deal goes wrong

Make a consumer complaint

More information

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