Should I pay a call-out charge?

Call-out charges are grossly misunderstood by many customers and unfairly despised by most. People often don't appreciate that if you book an engineer to call at your house, the engineer has to allow for between half an hour and up to an hour's slot in his day to fix your washing machine. If he only books in 8 jobs each day then one eighth of his day is given to you. Once he has a full day's work booked in, he could lose work when other customers can't be fitted in. If subsequently he comes to your house and you aren't even there, or you don't have the repair done, then it has cost him much more than the cost of the petrol to get there.

People tend to unfairly resent paying call-out charges (in the same way they resent paying delivery charges after buying a product.) These resentments are understandable to a point but unfair. It costs money to call out to a customer so of course they should pay. Many engineers realise that customers are generally much happier when call-out (and likewise delivery charges) are simply hidden within the cost of a product or service, but if you do not have your washing machine repaired it's not possible for an engineer to hide the costs unless they charge extra on successful repairs to cover it.

You may also save money because the engineer charging a callout (speaking personally) is more likely to tell you the best option financially, whereas an engineer not charging a callout is almost always going to opt for an expensive repair so he can earn some money, instead of suggesting a new machine, in which case he earns little to nothing!

Fox and Co charge a callout.  For this you receive 30 minutes of an engineer’s time and expertise.  If the machine really isn’t worth repairing or is too costly, you will be told to buy a replacement machine.

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