I've been here a couple of years now and have become fairly good a avoiding being gouged by anyone trying to sell me something. (Pretty much anyone here)
On landing here I learnt my lesson quickly.
But today I got totally shafted.
My car blew a top radiator hose outside work, too far to limp home so asked the garage over the road to sort. Very friendly people.
So theres me thinking, new hose $50, plus fitting, say all up $200-250 maybe. Ahem, try $1000.
I know my way around cars, so when the garage rang to say worth changing thermostat (ok, sounds like a good idea but not at $190 in parts) and your front pads are gone. (Fair enough) I expected a bill of say 500$
Did not expect brake pads to cost $350 in parts, in fact they don't, but when you 'have' to change brake fluid (!!?!?) to change pads of course they do.
Oh, and the courtesy car wash cost me $50 in labour. And $80 in 'distilled water' for the radiator.
My rough guess is that they are charging at least 100% markup on parts and then some. Before I moved I took the car to a specialist and was quoted 363$ for a part I bought retail from the same supplier in town,retail, for 114$.
At least the beer is cheap... Oh wait...