Kimberley Liquor Accord Profiteering

Submitted: Monday, Sep 02, 2013 at 11:17
ThreadID: 104155 Views:2407 Replies:5 FollowUps:10
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Whilst agreeing with the Kimberley Liquor Accord and the reasons for it, I am disgusted that some liquor outlets have chosen to use this mechanism as a cover to rip off the bona fide travelling public and milk them for all they are worth. On a recent stay at the Kimberley Hotel in Halls Creek I fronted up at the bar to buy some 'take-aways' for consumption in my room and was quoted $45.00 for a bottle of Oyster Bay Sauvignon Blanc and $9.00 for a stubby of Tooheys New. The Oyster Bay SB normally retails for around $22.00 in a liquor store and the stubby's are around $3.00 each when purchased in a 6-pack. The only way you can buy take-away full strength beer or wine & spirits in this town and others that are part of the accord is by being a house guest and if you don't like it you can go without which is what I elected to do.
It is very sad that some liquor outlets choose to use the guise of the liquor accord and the people it is is designed to protect to charge the unsuspecting travelling public extortionate prices.
Is it any wonder so many choose to holiday in Bali?
My advice to anyone intending travelling to these areas is that if you like to partake in a poison of your choice at the days end, take your own pre-purchased from one of the liquor chain stores in a regional centre where they have competition.
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Reply By: Ron N - Monday, Sep 02, 2013 at 12:33

Monday, Sep 02, 2013 at 12:33
Blown4by - Yeah, you're not alone in that gripe about the number of Kimberley places that are intent on a complete rip-off.
Broome comes to mind, I've seen a number of people explode at being charged $4 for a can of Coke or $8 for a fresh orange juice.
These retailers try to use the excuse of freight costs, and distance, and other high business costs.

Yes, I know there's a lot of inherent high costs in doing business in rural Australia - but a lot of these prices are just plain tourist gouging.
Luckily we have good and quick communications today in most areas, and we can warn others.

Typically, this is the same as servos in remote places shafting tourists on fuel - people don't take long to wake up and carry additional fuel, so they can drive straight past.

Nullarbor and Madura come to mind in these categories. It's amazing how many people just grumble, and still pay up, though.
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Follow Up By: Tjukayirla Roadhouse - Monday, Sep 02, 2013 at 15:54

Monday, Sep 02, 2013 at 15:54
I wonder if you truly do know the costs involved Ron?

As for the purchase of grog, do some think it wise to charge differently going on the colour of your skin?
or is it just that "bona fide" travellers deserve to pay less for everything?

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Follow Up By: Ron N - Monday, Sep 02, 2013 at 16:52

Monday, Sep 02, 2013 at 16:52
TR - Yeah, I reckon I've got a reasonable idea. I was in the earthmoving, trucking and mining businesses for well over 35 yrs - employed a lot of people, put up with a lot of high costs because of remoteness - and I've even operated in your neck of the woods, when I re-treated the gold tailings at the Ida H on the Burtville Rd in 1988!

I know all about the cost of running camps in the bush, the high cost of having to generate your own power, and the cost of freight. I know all about Govt licences, rules, regulations, petty laws, and snooping inspectors that make your life difficult!

I know all about the massive difficulty of acquiring good employees - then trying to get them to stay with you, as soon as you have them up to speed - when the "opposition" business has just offered them a huge pay increase and better conditions!

Having said all that - and having travelled and worked over a lot of this wide brown land - there's a number of people in roadside and (even town) businesses who just have a "gouge them, and let's make a quick million and get out", mentality.

I don't have a problem with business owners making a reasonable return on their investment - but when one comes across straight-out gouging, then I tend not to return to deal with that business again, if I can possibly avoid it.
The problem starts when a business owner develops the attitude that there's no competition to speak of, and nowhere else, any of the "suckers" can go - so they can charge what they like.
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Follow Up By: Tjukayirla Roadhouse - Monday, Sep 02, 2013 at 17:02

Monday, Sep 02, 2013 at 17:02
No argument from me Ron, they do exist, that's for sure. Though it gets tiring when the travelling public expect city prices everywhere they go. I'm sure you've seen them.

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Follow Up By: cookie1 - Monday, Sep 02, 2013 at 18:26

Monday, Sep 02, 2013 at 18:26
I also understand that there is an added cost of getting the goods out to remote areas but that cost is dispersed by the whole shipment not just the individual goods themselves.

I certainly don't expect city prices and for most people on here I think that is a bit rough

What I found suprising is when I turned up at Knawarritja and was charged more than a local from the next town that was passing through and ascertained that the colour of my skin was to my detriment.

Why is it that I could buy a 200L drum of diesel cheaper at Well 23 than what was available at Kunawarritja

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Follow Up By: blown4by - Monday, Sep 02, 2013 at 21:45

Monday, Sep 02, 2013 at 21:45
Hi Al,
I welcome your comments but never did I suggest or think there should be different prices for different skin colour. My point is that because of the liquor accord rules there is no competition when it comes to full strength beer and wine. The retailer I mentioned has chosen to charge prices that would not stand scrutiny by any measure apart from possibly in their restaurant but not for take-away grog. As a point of interest I compared prices for the same products in Kunnunurra, Lake Argyle, El Questro, Home Valley Station and Drysdale Station and none came near the prices being charged at the place I mentioned. I have lived and worked in remote areas nearly all of my life and I do not expect to pay city prices in remote areas. I also believe in supporting the local businesses and respect their right to make a fair living but when they charge prices like this, sorry, but I will exercise my spending discretion and bring supplies with me. This disadvantages all retailers including those who do the right thing and are in the game for the long haul not just to make a fast buck in the short term. Maybe the retailers should form their own chamber of commerce and sort out those few who give all retailers a bad name.
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Reply By: Member - Michael P (QLD) - Monday, Sep 02, 2013 at 12:37

Monday, Sep 02, 2013 at 12:37
Maybe it's a Halls Creek thing. A bit off topic but 2 years ago at the Caravan Park getting ready for the CSR asked about LPG & was told that they weighed and sold by weight Gee that's fair so offered a 4kg for a top up. Told " That was 1kg, $17.90 thanks".
When I queried the price was told $17.90 is the minimum charge for LPG.
That's the way of life I guess.
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Reply By: cookie1 - Monday, Sep 02, 2013 at 13:11

Monday, Sep 02, 2013 at 13:11
Thanks for the heads up

we are planning a trip there next year and do try to support the locals where we can but within reason.

I guess we shall carry some Chatauex Shiraz Cardboard and keep our fuel tanks full where the pricing is reasonable

It is indeed sad to hear that this is the case and do understand that it is a seasonal tourism sector but the pricing above does seem very excessive

AnswerID: 517526

Reply By: Member - Oldbaz. NSW. - Monday, Sep 02, 2013 at 14:46

Monday, Sep 02, 2013 at 14:46
Reminds me of my last visit to Fitzroy Crossing in 07. We arrived hot & dry one Friday
afternoon..booked into that Hotel cum C/p. All good..nice grass for C/t..quick set up
& old shearer mate & I headed for the bar for a few well earned, time 4.30 pm.
Turned back at the door by very large gent of Islander Appearance..(can I say that ?)
for WEARING THONGS !!!!. I gave great reasoned argument why this was crap &...
got shown the door. Trudged back to camp, 400 metres & swapped offending footware for ...yep...old sandals. Back to bar , smiled at guard & ordered 2 pints..
We watched aghast as barmen put a pint in each glass...& another 3 pints over the
side & down the drain..then sat two of the flattest beers you would ever see ,on the bar. He quickly scuttled away before I had paid. I invited guard over & asked what he
thought of the beers. No idea, says he..don't drink beer. I'm not drinking these either,
says I..or paying for them. Please yourself he says, my shift just finished, already done an hours OT... & was gone. Barman returns & I order two stubbies. Whats wrong with the pints says he. Everything says we. He apologises & advises he has been a barman for just on 20 minutes. Old shearer mate takes over & in another two
minutes we have barman pulling a beer we can drink..after suitable instruction.
All is good again...Guard returns...been told to work more OT..
A very large bloke in a big hat & rural clobber comes in & orders 4 slabs...guard
rushes over & advises this chap that he cant wear his hat in the bar just as he heads out the door with a slab under each arm. Big chap grins at him & keeps going, to
return in a minute, still hatted.. invites guard to remove the hat. Interesting we thinks,
& order more pints from our new friend the barman. Guard looks worried & has an
anguished conversation with an unseen advisor via some flash comms gear. The
only bit we catch is..."wake up to your F****** self. Big cattleman is long gone,
guard looks sheepish..come & have a beer, old shearer mate says, he was too big for you anyway..guard declines & sulks in corner. After a couple more well poured pints
old shearer mate & I help one another back to camp..giggling likeschoolboys...
A Happy Hour after all. It remains our fondest memory of the Crossing.
AnswerID: 517531

Follow Up By: get outmore - Monday, Sep 02, 2013 at 17:37

Monday, Sep 02, 2013 at 17:37
When I was there in 03 even the bouncer didn't have shoes
It was pension day and the place was an animal house.
Very small corner bar was reserved for decent folk and the bouncer kept the rabble out of there
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Follow Up By: Member - Warrie (NSW) - Monday, Sep 02, 2013 at 20:34

Monday, Sep 02, 2013 at 20:34
Great story Baz. LOL X2...... W

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Reply By: Sand Man (SA) - Monday, Sep 02, 2013 at 18:31

Monday, Sep 02, 2013 at 18:31
And folk wonder why some of us travelers take a good supply of our favorite beer and wine along with us on out trips.

It sure isn't to sell to the "locals" for a profit.


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Follow Up By: cookie1 - Monday, Sep 02, 2013 at 22:01

Monday, Sep 02, 2013 at 22:01
I would bet that if you could buy the stuff locally at a reasonable price you wouldn't bother taking the same quantity - correct.

This is the reason that these guys will do themselves a disservice

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Follow Up By: Sand Man (SA) - Tuesday, Sep 03, 2013 at 07:25

Tuesday, Sep 03, 2013 at 07:25
No I don't agree.

I wouldn't regard myself as a large consumer of alcohol but when I do imbibe, I like the brands I am used to.

I prefer canned cider in warmer climates, with the occasional Coopers Lager and a glass or two of red wine around the camp fire at night.

You can't buy Coopers everywhere and canned cider is not all that common either.


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Follow Up By: cookie1 - Tuesday, Sep 03, 2013 at 22:08

Tuesday, Sep 03, 2013 at 22:08
OK I take it back, so you are saying that if they sold Coopers & your favourite canned cider at a few dollars extra you would still carry it all the way from Adelaide anyway

BTW you will be suprised where you will find Coopers these days

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