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Senior citizens, PWDs now entitled to discounts in online transactions

Senior citizens and persons with disabilities (PWDs) are now entitled to discounts not only for over-the-counter purchases but also for online transactions.

According to Athena Imperial’s Friday report on “24 Oras,” several government agencies issued a joint memorandum circular that granted senior citizens and differently-abled individuals a 20 percent discount and an additional 8 percent value-added tax (VAT) exemption for online purchases, phone calls, and mobile applications.

The discount also covers teleconsultations, digital bookings of land transport, sea and air travel services, and online payments to hotels and restaurant reservations.

It likewise covers selected products, including coffee, sugar, rice, cooking oil, detergents, and prescribed medication.

The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) said targeted individuals need only upload or present their senior citizen or PWD IDs online before making their purchase.

“Kahit online seller ka lang na ordinary, you'll just have to provide the mechanism. Halimbawa sa chat, para ma-verify mo ‘yung identification niya. ” DTI Undersecretary Ruth Castelo explained.

(Even if you’re an ordinary online seller, you’ll just have to provide the mechanism. For example, you can chat and this is how you will verify their identification.)

Sellers can only confirm if their buyers are included in the discount after the delivery.

Authorization letters are also allowed.

"Kailangan maipreseta mo yung IDs. Otherwise, babayran mo kung wala ka namang authorization letter," added Castelo. "[Pwede ang authorization letter] kasi baka naman nakahiga si lola na hindi naman makabangon at sumalubong du’n sa delivery. Kailangan nagtutugma silang lahat, ‘yung documents na ibibigay mo.”

(You need to present the needed IDs. Otherwise, you will pay the full amount if you don't have an authorization letter. You can use an authorization letter because, maybe, grandma is bedridden and can't accept the delivery. The details in the documents presented should be aligned.)

The DTI reminded senior citizens and PWDs to only purchase from verified online platforms to avoid having their personal details used for other purposes.

Meanwhile, senior citizens and PWDs lauded the development as this would be a significant help for them.

“Malaking bagay ‘yun kasi usually pag mga senior ayaw na lumabas ng bahay. usually nagpapadeliver,” Erwin Gonzaga, a senior citizen, said.

(It’s a great help to us because usually if you’re a senior citizen, you don’t want to leave the house anymore. You always opt for delivery.) — Sundy Locus/DVM, GMA News