The Belgian consumer organisation - Test-Achats in French, Test-Aankoop in Dutch - is an independent organisation defending the interests of consumers in Belgium since 1957. Test-Achats is the main interlocutor with the Belgian authorities on matters affecting the protection of the consumer. Test-Achats is fully funded by its approx.. 350,000 members who subscribe to its magazines and services. Test-Achats is a member of the Executive Board of BEUC, CI (Consumers International) as well as ICRT (International Consumer Research and Testing).
National railways: compensation for travelers also when there is a strike.
At the end of 2014 a strike broke out at the national railways. The company announced that voyagers wouldn’t be compensated for not being able to travel although, in the opinion of Test-Achats, they are legally and contractual obliged to. The consumer organisations started a class action and by coincidence at the next strike, in the beginning of 2016, the railway company decided to compensate travelers for the loss they suffered during the strike. Negotiations between Test-Achats and the railway company also gave a positive result for the victims of the 2014 strike.
Online comparison of the quality of Flemish hospitals
In 2016 the Flemish government started a website where consumers and patients can compare a set of quality parameters of all Flemish hospitals. Test-Achats obtained this result after a battle of years that cumulated in 2014 with a petition signed by 36,000 citizens. The fight continues to obtain the same result in Brussels and Wallonia.
Hygiene inspection results for catering industry and food retail are made public
Obtaining transparency in all possible domains is a major objective for the Belgian Consumer association (see also previous point). Getting the results of the inspections done by our Food agency public on the level of the individual operators has been a battle that has gone as far as the highest Belgian Court. Test-Achats won. Negotiations between the Food agency, Catering industry and Food retailers and Test-Achats gave birth in 2016 to a simplified and easy to understand publication of the inspection results of all food shops, restaurants and pubs.
Test-Achats forces Apple to respect the warranty rules
In 2014 the consumer organisation noticed that Apple didn’t respect the 2 years warranty period. Friendly asking them to respect this legal obligation stayed without effect. Only after bringing Apple to court they were open to negotiations and adapted their policy on warranty. Anonymous checks conducted by Test-Achats learned that Apple respects their engagement.