Tesco: Every little helps, but helps a bit more in Scotland

8 August 2011

tescoTesco would have you believe that they are there to help you get the best deal on... well... everything. Is there anything they don't sell? Only last week, we bought a human liver from a branch of Tesco (which we sold on to Paul Gascoigne as he'll probably need it at some point).

However, it appears that Tesco is more keen on helping out those who live in Scotland by charging them less for their shopping.

Some researchers discovered that products were as much as 70 per cent cheaper north of the border, which flies in the face of Tesco's national pricing policy. On average, Scottish shoppers were spending five per cent less on a range of 800 products.

Tesco have said that this was all down to a technical error, but the Daily Mail have gone in studs-up with the hilarious phrase ‘cost apartheid’ which they see existing between England and Scotland. Even better was an executive from a rival chain who told the Sunday Times: ‘We believe this is a secret test of geographic pricing.’

The headline grabbing price difference lies in cotton wool. In one London store, a packet of cotton-wool pads will set you back £1.03. The same product in the branch in Corstorphine, Edinburgh, will cost you just 29p.

A Tesco spokesman says: "A relatively small number of products at our Scottish stores were incorrectly priced by a small amount. This was caused by a technical error as our Scottish stores are being moved to a new pricing software system. The error has now been corrected."

Unsurprisingly, the highest 'English' price is deemed to be the correct one.


  • Captain C.
    tesco's excuse is b0ll0x; I had cause to visit the Burnley branch of tesco over several months and found that the 2for1 offers from my home in the midlands were often 3for1 in Burnley, and lots of products were cheaper, work trousers £5 cheaper than I paid done south, for example.
  • Richard
    This is bullshit! Of course Scotland prices are less, it's called price discrimination. People is Scotland earn less, on average, than people in London therefore their willing to pay less for products. This happens in thousands of markets and to imply that Tesco are the only company who do it is ridiculous. Just look at petrol prices :-P, when was the last time you went to a petrol station in a remote location and found the prices 3 or 4p more than in a built up city? Just another example of price discrimination.
  • ali b.
    Tesco is always full of chavs.
  • hatetesco
    I bought a bike from tesco direct online the other day - they took payment and then decided it was out of stock 2 days later. The bike was a disney princess £117 - 1/2 price to £58.50 with their 20% off the original full price making it £35.10. Bargain or so I thought. I complained via twitter and got the full 1/2 price refunded i.e. £58.50 and also a £20 gift card which I then put towards their cheap range of kids bikes. 5 days later the Disney Bike was back in stock for FULL PRICE. I tweeted my disgust at this but they claim they only had so many at the offer price. My argument is that they took payment and formed a contract - their argument is we are TESCO's and are BIGGER than you. I live in Scotland BTW so no fair treatment for me.
  • harry m.
    Prices in Dumfries show that Tesco are first to put up petrol 136.9 First up last to knock 1p off
  • harry m.
    Sorry forgot to say petrol in Carlisle are 5p cheaper
  • Richard
    @hatetesco regardless of whether they took payment or not, the contract isn't formed until they dispatch the item. Also, you got an extra £43.40 refunded over the amount you paid so stop complaining :-P

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