Oulu Best (Worst) Buy

The "Handbook For Survival in Finland" authored by Annikki and Jacob Matthan in 1994 after 10 years of research of life in Finland created a "game" to live well in Finland with a nominal salary. The system helped beat yearly inflation every year. This Blog shows how the system is still valid even in 2008!

Friday, October 18, 2013

Best Buys for Weekend of 18th October

Full roasted chicken straight from oven at €3.99 from Joutsensilta K-Supermarket on Friday. Two per buyer. Go before 16:30. Bananas whole weekend at €0.99 per kg. On Saturday Apple Hearts pastry packet of 440.gm (8 per packet) at €0.99 and two packets per buyer.

Potatoes at Lidl at 0.39 per kg. Small mandarins at€0.99 per kg. Orange/ Mango juice at €1 for a litre carton. Also at Lidl. Freshly made Finnish traditional Karjalan Pirakka at €0.25 each. Small but very good.

Friday, October 11, 2013

Some best buys this weekend

Lidl has a couple of great offers this weekend.

Dutch Conference Pears are just Euro 1.29 per kg.
Greek Style Joghur is Euro 1.99.
Apricot Jam 450 gm botle is knocked down to Euro 0.99.
And on Saturday Chicken mince is available at Euro 1.99 for a 400 gm packet . We usually do not get Chicken Mince. I is either pork, pork and beef or beef! There is a limit of just 2 packets per buyer for the Chicken Mince, so be prepared for a run on his product!

Enjoy.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

"IF" saga continues

As soon as my Oulu Best Buy input about the IF Insurance Company was released, they promptly paid me some small sum, thinking I would just keep quiet and go away.

The owe my € 5500 as compensation. They sent me a measly € 1400!

I let them know that I am not making any appeals about their absurd decisions as I do not have time to waste. They either  pay the whole sum or give me a good explanation why they cannot. Nothing in their small print can be used in this instance!

I have also told them to remove the false advertisement from Finnish TV and advise me that they have done so.

My complaint to the Finnish Consumer Organisation is ready and will be sent in a few days if they do not take my complaints seriously.

As I have said many times, the Finnish Media is so corrupt that they will not publish such incidents. That is why our internet is so powerful and we get some relief as we have a way to air our grievances.

Thank God Annikki and I I started Oulu Best (Worst) Buy a long time ago as no one can say that I have done it just because of this incident.

Many will remember how I took the Instrumentarium company to bits and they smarted for a long time because of that.

But all of you will remember the kudos I have put out there.

I have had record hits for this entry about IF!

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Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Worst Buy: Experience with a Finnish Insurance Company

For many years I have been using Pohjola as my personal insurance company for all my vehicles and also my home insurance.

By God's grace, they have been very prompt in handling all my claims. They did go out of their way to see that the claims were handled correctly. This was especially so when they did not have any really good English speakers on their staff.

I remember when my iMac computer got fried due to a power out. They just asked me to buy a new one and I got my eMac which is still going strong. I paid just about € 100 for this new machine.

When Annikki's white scooter got stolen, the claim was handled promptly and I got almost 90% of the value as the speedometer had just clocked less than 500 kms. And they did not even ask for proof as the scooter had been burnt by some kids and the police had identified it from the number plate which was found at the side of the scooter.

I have had a couple of unfortunate accidents in the car and the compensation was paid without any questions.

In contrast, we have had insurance from IF for Raantel Oy, our serviced apartment company.

Without doubt,  IF must be the worst insurance company in Finland. 

They have a very expensive advertisement on TV telling us how they beautifully handle claims.

In my exoperience, IF is a company composed of liars and cheats. The ordinary employee is trained to lie and write false reports!

Strong words, but unfortunately true.

They try to find ways and clauses how not to pay legitimate claims.

In the last case, a pipe from the dishwasher to the exit broke.

According to their terms this is explicitly covered. I should have received loss of income as two apartments had to be vacated.

They sent me a decision which makes no sense as they declined responsibility even though the claim was absolutely legitimate. And they expect me to appeal!

They did not send any person to see the damage or even look at the report from the evaluation company, which said exactly how the leakage had taken place along with photographs showing the hole in the damaged pipe.

I will be lodging my complaint with the Finnish Consumer Organisation, changing my insurance to another company as soon as possible, and publicising their behaviour as widely as possible and exposing the false advertising and unhelpful attitude of the IF Insurance Company.

Hence, in my estimation, the insurance company IF gets my Finland Worst Buy label.

You have been warned.

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Monday, July 19, 2010

Inks for your Desktop Printers

I have a really good Canon PIMAX MP 550 which prints photo quality pictures. One of the good features is that it has individual colour cartridges, with a small and a large black cartridge as well. So I do not have to buy the composite cartridges.

However, I found the Canon Cartridges to be extremely expensive, almost € 12 per colour, so, even with some give aways, i was paying almost € 80 to reload my printer.

I visited the ink refill centre in Oulu and found that I could but a complete set for € 40, saving 50%.

Then I happened to visit a Lidl outölet and I saw on offer colour cartridges marked as usuable by the MP 550. I bought a set and they wwere about € 3 each and € 3.50 for the larger black cartridge. A total expenditure of € 15.50.

The quality of the print was excellent. So no problem with the ink, although I cannot yet vouch for long term stability.

The problem with Lidl is that they do not keep even good selling products on their shelves for long. A visit to 3 Lidls in Oulu and one in Tampere failed to turn up any more cartridges!

These cartridges are made in the Czech Republic, so i will try to get them directly from there.

Look around before you buy your cartridges or even refill your old ones. It is very likely there is a manufacturer making your type of cartridge far cheaper than what you are paying.

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Friday, July 16, 2010

Strawberry season ending

The strawberry season is fast coming to a close because of the intense heat all over Finland.

Annikki was pushing me to buy the strawberries,- I held off till I knew the  bottom had been hit.

On Wednesady I got 5 kg of Strawberries at just €15.90 (Old Finnish Markka 96) per kilo from Halpa Halli. This is as low as I have been buying it all these 26 years.

Annikki was amazed how I had held on as she had read in the newspapers of how the season was rapidly ending.

I ate my fill as I drove home with the box next to me in the car. in the evening, Annikki dished up a huge plate of strawberries and ice cream, reviving mychildhood  memories of the Nilgiris Hole in the wall on Brigade Road, Bangalore.

I am satisfied. I await the strawberry season of next year!

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Sunday, July 11, 2010

Cheapest Petrol Prices in Oulu and Finland

When I put up the price of petrol at Hartola, the cheapest in Finland, on this my Oulu Best Buy Blog, a friend, now living in India, came back quick with a link to the daily cheapest prices in Oulu  and the twenty cheapest locations all over Finland.

The Hartola ABC, which I recorded in my previous entry of Oulu Best Buy, is the cheapest of all.

But these other web sites are valuable if you are cost conscious!

Many thanks, Yuvarajan.

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Petrol: An absolute BEST BUY

While I was driving back from Helsinki a couple of weeks ago, I had just filled my petrol tank at an ABC near Lahti. As I approached Hartola, just after Lahti, I noticed a petrol station with the price of just € 1.34 for a litre of Grade 95, which was almost 11 cents cheaper than what I had paid just a few minutes earlier.

Aas I passed through Hartola, I noticed that almost all the pumps were selling petrol around this price.

Last week, when I went on my drive to Helsinki, I approached Hartola and saw that all of the pumps were offering a rate around € 1,33 whereas I had paid € 1,46 in Oulu earlier that morning. Having covered around 425 km, I stopped at an ABC, which had just the pump but no other services, and filled my tank at the rate of € 1,329 per litre.

Taking into account that I get a 5% bonus on ABC purchases, or almost 7 cents per litre, I was paying just € 1.25 per litre, 21 cents lower than what I had paid in the morning.

I consider this an absolute BEST BUY if you are driving to Helsinki.

You can fill up again on the return journey.

As my old jallopy gives me about 16 km per litre (6 litres per 100 km), and with a fuel tank of around 55 litres, this is a huge saving.

On my next trip I will have just enough fuel to reach Hartola, so I get the advantage of a full tank or almost € 7.

Let me know of other places where fuel is cheap as I do travel a lot and every cent does count!!

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