SINGAPORE: A bridal agency has closed suddenly, causing affected customers to lose more than S$55,000 in prepayments, the Consumers Association of Singapore (CASE) said on Thursday (Jan 31).
Since Nov 7 last year, CASE has received 26 complaints from customers that the owners and representatives of The Aisle Bridal Boutique and The Aisle Bridal Studio have become uncontactable.
At least S$56,770 in prepayments have been lost by the affected customers from the sudden closure, the watchdog confirmed.
Both companies are still live on Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority's (ACRA) registry.
CASE added that a new company has taken over The Aisle Bridal's premises at 59 McNair Road.
Affected customers have been told to pay additional fees ranging from S$900 to S$2,250 should they wish to proceed with the original wedding packages they had signed up for, according to CASE.
Another bridal agency, Lovette, has registered 59 McNair Road - The Aisle Bridal Boutique's previous address - as its own address on its website.
Channel NewsAsia has contacted Lovette for comment.
On Aug 14 last year, The Aisle Bridal announced on its Facebook page it was "going through a change of management".
"Please rest assured that we will definitely honour the deals you had with The Aisle Bridal," it said.
"As we are in the midst of the transition period, there is bound to a little uneasy (sic) in your heart."
Another post on Sep 5 advertised "great deals coming up for 2019/2020 couples". Subsequent posts invited potential customers to a month-long open house.
"Celebrating our change of management by introducing our 2018 packages to all upcoming wedding couples (before they sell out)!" one such post said.
The last post was on Sep 25, before the page went silent.
Affected customers may file a claim at the Small Claims Tribunals while The Aisle Bridal is still live on ACRA, CASE confirmed. They can also approach the watchdog for assistance on 6100 0315.
"We would like to encourage consumers to consider purchasing insurance that covers business insolvency when they take up bridal packages," CASE added.
"This will ensure that their prepayments are protected if the bridal agency closes down abruptly. Consumers should also do their own research on whether the bridal agency has a good track record of delivering their services promptly and effectively."