Thursday, November 8, 2007

Let me introduce you to Gabby…

I met this girl about 3 weeks ago, while I accompany my family shopping around when they visited us. Her name is Gabby. And it’s purely coincidence that she happen to be there to help me out with my dad’s Tourist Refund Scheme aka TRS-thing, after more than half an hour of hell dealt with bunch of arrogant Salespersons (plus one manager) from Sydney Opera House Gift Shop.

Ok, this is what happened. My mum & dad spend quite a lot in SOH gift shop. As a tourist, they had their right to claim the GST back from every dollar they spent here, when they fly back to Indonesia. As required by Australia Government –Australia Custom- for transaction over $1,000; the seller had to provide details of the customer –as appears in passport or other documents- in the Tax Invoice or receipts. Either printed or written on it.
Since they spend more than $1,000 for heaps of things at SOH gift shop, I asked the salesperson to write my brother name on Tax Invoice slash receipt so he can claim for my Dad. They refused it. And we came into argument about this matter, about the rule of TRS, and the staffs insisted that it’s not necessary to have the name written on.

I tried to explain –based on my husband experienced last time he flew overseas- that over $1,000 we need to have our detail on docket (with this fact, we got no problem at all when we contacted Oroton Head Office to help us with this process when Custom officer requested my husband details on the docket). The staffs dragged their manager out, and things even getting worse. He spoke to us as we did not understand at all about TRS or Taxation System in Australia. He just underestimated us. Tired of arguing, and felt sick of his arrogant manner, we walked out from the SOH Gift Shop. The place that acclaimed their self as World Class Tourism Destination, treated customer that spend their money there as an idiot. This wasn’t the service I expected from this place so called Sydney Opera House. So disappointing.

And we walked to the shop next to it. Purely Australian Clothing Co. There we met Gabby. I can’t remember how it’s started, we just fell into conversation about TRS, the she handed me TRS Official booklet (she said, she always keep some copies –even in various language including Bahasa Indonesia- ) which gave me power to ran back to SOH Gift Shop and feel like give the manager a punched on his face.

(Again, it took us another half an hour to get Tax Invoice with my brother name written on it, and he stupidly rang Custom Office which number stated on the booklet, to make sure that he obliged to do that. And –of course- because he so arrogant, he still blaming on the custom officer he just had conversation with –poor officer- that this officer cannot explained to him what the reason behind putting customer name on docket. What a silly thing. If it’s stated officially on the booklet, it must be compulsory. End of message. Full stop. Tried to save his face from humiliating moment he created himself.)

Anyway, this girl really brightens our day. She is real Salesperson. Genuine. She gave us information with nothing in return. When I thank her for her act, she only said that she hate if she saw tourist being treated unfair and being given misleading or wrong information. She just doesn’t feel right to hear our story about this TRS.
So, if I may, I introduce you to Gabby. Find her on her shop, Purely Australian Clothing Co on Lower Concourse of Sydney Opera House. And I am happy to spread the words about her warmth service to the world. And if you happen to meet her, please send my hug for her.

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