The next time you use a dressing room to try on an outfit, don’t be surprised if you’re charged a fee! So-called “try-on fees” have been popping up in department stores all over Australia. And a growing number of North American retailers are considering them too. Basically, the stores will charge a few bucks to try on clothes. Then, if you buy something, your money gets refunded.
It may sound like a greedy way for stores to make more money, but some experts think try-on fees may soon be necessary for department stores and boutiques to stay in business! It turns out a lot of people only go into stores to try on clothes. Then, when they find something they like, they’ll write down the size and designer name and leave because they can usually get the same outfit online for a lower price.
Meanwhile, stores pay rent based on the size of their shop and those dressing rooms take up valuable space! So one way to offset the extra cost of offering dressing rooms is to charge try-on fees. On the flipside, some experts say the fees would never work in North America. That’s because shoppers here are used to getting the discounts stores offer them as an incentive to come in. So, we’re unlikely to shop somewhere that charges a fee each time we try on a sweater.
What do you think? Would you pay a try-on fee if it meant helping stores stay in business? How much is too much?