CANBERRANS have redeemed more than $1 million ChooseCBR vouchers since the problem-ridden website went live again today (June 18).
Technical difficulties brought the ACT government's ChooseCBR discount voucher scheme offline less than two days after its launch on June 9.
Taking a week to fix, the scheme was brought back online this morning and was met with a demand from subscribers who spent almost $500,000 in a number of hours.
This adds to the $300,000 spent in vouchers prior to the scheme going offline.
An email that was sent to ChooseCBR customers yesterday (June 17) explained that "improvements to the system’s ability to deal with the high volume of customer and business activity" had been made over the last seven days.
The email urged customers to be "patient as businesses get back online".
However, the scheme, which offers ACT government-subsidised discounts of up to 50 per cent, has attracted heavy criticism from the Canberra Liberals and some businesses.
"For weeks the business minister has been talking up the revamped scheme and urging businesses and Canberrans to get on board, yet when they did, the system crashed, with the minister saying it was all too much," shadow business minister Leanne Castley said.
“The ChooseCBR trial was a dud and the revamped ChooseCBR scheme is a complete farce."
IGA Deakin agreed with this sentiment and said it was no longer accepting ChooseCBR vouchers, according to a sign at the front of the store, which reads: “The system is unreliable and causes too much distress for our staff and customers.
“We apologise for trying to participate in this program. Please understand this is out of our control.”
A spokesperson for the ACT government said the relaunched system was "performing well".
"The popularity of the program has meant that already $1 million in vouchers have been redeemed, including over $600,000 today (June 18)," said the spokesperson.
"The amount claimed today alone exceeds the total from both days last week, further highlighting that the system is performing well and we are continually monitoring the system."
Of the six businesses that withdrew from the scheme last week, three had chosen to rejoin, the spokesperson added.
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