T-Mobile advertised with the slogan “1200 GB for free for a year”, while the condition to take advantage of the promotion was to top up the account with at least PLN 35 per month. The President of the Office of Competition and Consumer Protection concluded that since it was not possible to talk about a free service, the operator was misleading customers.
The president of the Office of Competition and Consumer Protection, Tomasz Chróstny, raised doubts about advertisements for T-Mobile’s pre-paid offer “1,200 GB free for a year”. As determined by the Office, the operator T-Mobile Polska misled consumers because the advertisements suggested that the data package was free. In fact, instead of the promised 1,200 GB package, the consumer received 100 GB every month, provided that he topped up the account for a minimum of PLN 35 per month. After a year, the amount he had to top up his card would be PLN 420. However, this information was written in small font at the very bottom of the ad.
PLN 25 million fine for T-Mobile
– Advertising slogans are designed to attract the consumer’s attention so that they are remembered and encourage them to purchase the advertised service. As a rule, the advertising message must be short, concise and clear. However, this does not authorize entrepreneurs to use false advertising. The consumer has the right to expect that the presented offer is fair and does not contain any catches. The actual promotion mechanism of T-Mobile Polska was based on an “installment” system, in which the consumer received a 100 GB package every month for 12 months, provided that the card was topped up with at least PLN 35 – says the president of the Office of Competition and Consumer Protection, Tomasz Chróstny.
For violating the collective interests of consumers, the President of the Office of Competition and Consumer Protection imposed a fine of over PLN 25 million on T-Mobile Polska. Information about the decision of the President of the Office will be published on the T-Mobile Polska website and will appear on the operator’s social media profiles. It will be in two language versions: Polish and Ukrainian, because consumers speaking this language were also misled. The decision is not final – the operator can appeal to the court.