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Budget buys can beat premium brands

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Source: MakeLemonade.nz

Te Whanganui-a-Tara – Consumer NZ’s expert testers have found that top priced products don’t always perform the best.

As the cost-of-living crisis rolls on, the consumer watchdog has provided insights into three reasonably priced products that gave expensive versions a run for their money.

A $69 microwave from Kmart rated higher than most models tested, including appliances that cost more than $500.

Consumer test content team leader James le Page says they put all the microwaves they tested through their paces. They considered their performance, ease of use, predicted reliability and owner satisfaction.

One Kmart model received a higher overall score than pricier models by big brands such as Miele, Panasonic and Breville.

For expectant parents or families looking to replace their stroller, Mother’s Choice Ava stroller from The Warehouse gets the Consumer Recommends seal of approval.

This stroller, at $220, is the cheapest model we recommend. It passed their safety and durability tests, and was easy to fold, unfold and stash in the car boot.

The Warehouse buy scored higher than models offered by Phil & Teds and Edwards & Co.

“Of the 49 strollers we tested, almost one-third failed a safety test. The Mother’s Choice model got top marks for safety, le Page says.

A Kmart frypan costing $21 came out top of Consumer’s frying pans test. Four pans scored 91 percent in our test.

“The Kmart option is more than $100 cheaper than the Tefal models, and over $300 cheaper than the Le Creuset option, which all shared the top spot.

Consumer members have heaped praise on the Kmart frypan too, with multiple people claiming it’s the best frypan they’ve ever had.

“Please shop with caution though. We tested another Kmart option, costing $17 and labelled it don’t buy.”

Consumer regularly tests products and services and provides recommendations for top performers. Consumer members benefit from these independent test results, which over time, have the potential to save them tidy sums.

Le Page says it;’ not unusual for their testing to throw up some great-performing cheaper products.

“Throughout our testing, we are always mindful of sustainability. We only recommend cheaper products if we are confident they will last a reasonable length of time.”

There are a variety of membership terms available, including online only, or online and magazine too.  A seven-day digital pass is a popular option for people looking for expert advice before buying a big-ticket item.

Consumer NZ is an independent, non-profit organisation dedicated to championing and empowering consumers in Aotearoa. Consumer NZ has a reputation for being fair, impartial and providing comprehensive consumer information and advice.