Singaporeans are proud of our kiasu nature, and even the country’s consumer watchdog stands by it.
The Consumer Association of Singapore (CASE) is preparing to launch a price comparison app for supermarkets and hawker centres, so shoppers can suss out the cheapest deals with ease.
It was first mentioned that the app would be developed during the Ministry of Trade and Industry’s budget debate in March 2019.
At CASE’s yearly fundraising lunch today (10 September), Senior Parliamentary Secretary for Trade and Industry Dr. Tan Wu Meng shared more details.
The app, named Price Kaki, will let users search for grocery items and hawker centre dishes by name, category or location to look up their prices.
They can use location filters to find where to get the chicken rice among the hawker centres in Toa Payoh, for example.
There’s also a function that lets users scan the barcode of supermarket items to find out how much the same product costs in other stores.
Users who join price alert lists on the app will be receive notifications to update them whenever prices change.
The app will rely on information supplied by partnering establishments as well as crowdsourced tip-offs from shoppers.
In this way, Dr Tan likens the app to a “network of kakis” or friends that share and exchange shopping tips and deals with one another.
Users are encouraged to contribute to the app by submitting prices and promotions they come across in stores, accompanied with photo evidence to verify it.
For their contribution, the most active participants will be rewarded with incentives like grocery, food, movie and transport vouchers every two weeks.
Price Kaki will first be trialled with businesses in Jurong West, Tampines and Toa Payoh when the app is launched on 28 September, and later rolled out to the rest of Singapore in early 2020.
According to a Straits Times report, the trial will cover 31 supermarket outlets, starting with the pricing information of around 3,000 commonly purchased grocery items from FairPrice, Giant, Sheng Siong and Prime Supermarket.
It will also include food from 11 hawker centres, in locations like Our Tampines Hub, Toa Payoh West Market and Food Centre, and Boon Lay Place Market and Food Village.
CASE President Lim Biow Chuan said the app aims to equip consumers with information “so that they can make informed purchasing decisions”.
He added that they will collaborate closely with supermarkets to make sure accurate prices are kept up to date in the app, and CASE will work towards launching more of such initiatives.
Featured Image Credit: Dynamitick / Consumer Association of Singapore