What’s so special about this Woolworths ‘special offer’?

Yellow ‘special’ tags promoting great money saving offers can be found scattered throughout your supermarket shelves, but how many of

Yellow ‘special’ tags promoting great money saving offers can be found scattered throughout your supermarket shelves, but how many of you actually stop and see just what the value of that offer is?

One Woolworths shopper from Western Sydney caught the supermarket chain out when the price tag boasted a great big reduction of zero dollars on one of its ‘special offers’.


The shopper posted an image of Helga’s Ancient Grain bread loaf, on offer for $3.50… It’s original price.

Retail at its best at @woolworths_au tonight. Always 3.50… Special 3.50… Was 3.50 #bargain #3.50

A photo posted by SimonT (@simontrezise) on

It wouldn’t be the first time the giant supermarket retailer has confused with its ‘special’ tags.

In September 2015, Woolworths cut the price of a Little Live Pets Butterfly House by 1 cent, from $20 to $19.99 and advertised it with its cute green birds as a ‘Cheap, cheap special’.


While some discounts are great for you as a consumer, others can really hurt the hip pocket. Here are a few tips to help you decide if you’re really getting a ‘special’ deal.

1. If it ends in ‘.99’

It’s said that because you read from left to right, just seeing that the first number (e.g., $19 is less than $20) makes you think you’re getting a good deal.

2. One product goes down, while another product goes up

Supermarkets often cut the price of one item (like milk, for example), which will get you shopping in-store. The retailer might be happy to take a hit on the item because what usually happens is they increase the price of items that aren’t as commonly bought.

Chances are you’ll be paying the same price at the checkout for your groceries though.

3. You’re getting a seniors discount

Retailers have the option of selling seniors items they wouldn’t normally buy at a lower price point if they offer a ‘seniors discount’.

4. There’s a price war

You’ve seen it happen over and over again. One supermarket drops the prices on its products and to ensure they stay in the game, other supermarkets will discount their prices harder. You’re actually getting a strong discount when supermarkets go head-to-head.

How closely do you search for the best deals when you go grocery shopping? Do you think supermarkets mislead consumers with their discounting?


  1. Judith  

    Woolworths new “Rewards” programme is rotten. I used to get Qantas points for every dollar spent over $30 in one shop. With the new system, you only get a “reward” of a few cents on certain products – not many of them and generally not the products I would buy.
    With Fly buys, I get points on every bill when I shop at Coles, and usually I can claim $10 discount at least once a month.

  2. Mary  

    Beware of Woolies offering you a raincheck. I had one for a product that they didn’t stock again for months but was told I could claim it at any other store. When I tried to do this, they refused to sell it to me at the agreed price, only at a dearer one. I now refuse to shop where a contract isn’t honoured.

  3. Geraldine  

    Their orange ticketed so-called ‘specials’ are usually items no one wants to buy anyway, so they’re bee useless. It takes weeks’ to get to $10.

    Before, annually, I’d get thousands of QF FF points, now I get nothing.
    Since the inception of ‘new’ scheme, I’ve reached $10 twice! Woo-hoo! A huge saving! NOT…………

    With Coles, I get ‘Fly Buys’ totally.

    And ‘Woolies’ wonder why they’re losing money!
    And, what’s laughable, they pay ‘marketing’ guru’s thousands of $ to try & find out why!

    Hey, Woolies, I’ll tell you how to get back market share for nix!
    Drop the current much-trumpeted scheme, which is a grand FAILURE, have a talk to QANTAS, & start again with the QF FF Points!
    Very simple…………

  4. It’s all a con, pure and simple…. I’ve never yet seen the total of the tape go down, in fact it increases EVERY week. Go ALDI and the like. We’ve paid enough to this mob and Coles.

  5. Nancy Brenton  

    I shop at Coles and sometimes at Aldi. I know my prices fairly well and if there is a really good bargain say Moccna 200g for $9 I buy two as we use it all the time. I buy my usual stuff and leave a few dollars every week to double up if there really is a good bargain – works for me.

  6. Mike Murray  

    always check under the yellow “SPECIAL”tag

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *