Dutch shops tend to round to the nearest 5 eurocents, so a bill coming to â‚¬4.89 would be rounded to â‚¬4.90. This is shown as afronding – literally, “rounding” – a correction of up to two cents either way.
The net result is that 1 and 2 eurocent coins in the Netherlands are rare (although they are still in circulation).
I’m not sure quite when the decision was made to do this; I’ve been aware of it for a few years now and, frankly it’s a great way to cut down on coppers.
If the price was, say, â‚¬4.87 then it would be rounded down to â‚¬4.85 – ie. the customer “gains” two cents. This should balance out but I suppose it depends on the use of psychological prices (the whole 99 cent pricing strategy clearly works in the shop’s favour) and how many items you buy (three items at 99 cents each would benefit the customer).
Somebody, somewhere has earned a PhD from this I’m sure!
I would be curious to know if there have been other effects of this. Are charity pots (not that I’ve seen any) less full as a result?