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    Category: At The Checkout

    The customer has seemed normal and maybe even intelligent throughout the shopping purchase. But then they get to the checkout and as soon as human interaction is required it all falls apart. The checkout operators really are our first line of defense against the stupid customer!

    Drinking Responsibly

    | Pittsburgh, PA, USA | At The Checkout, Food & Drink, Underaged

    (While perusing the selection of beer at my local grocery store, I cannot help but notice the enormous, brightly-colored signs posted on every available surface which proclaim: “WE CARD EVERYONE”. After choosing what I want, I head for the checkout, being sure to get my ID out along with my credit card.)

    Me: “Just this, thanks.”

    (The employee looks at me nervously. I’m 29, but look a good bit younger.)

    Employee: “Now because this is alcoholic, ma’am, I am going to need to see your ID.”

    Me: “Of course, got it right here.”

    (The employee blinks in surprise, then smiles enormously and happily rings up my six-pack of hard cider.)

    Me: “Do people really give you that hard a time about this? You have huge red and yellow signs EVERYWHERE. Not to mention it’s kind of, you know, the law?”

    Employee: “Honey, you have no idea. Thank you for being smart. Here’s your receipt, and I hope you really enjoy that!”

    Needs To Stop And Take A Minute

    , | Sydney, NSW, Australia | At The Checkout, Crazy Requests, Food & Drink, Money

    (I work at a fast food chain, where most of the food just needs to be assembled on order. However, some items are rarely ordered, so we don’t prepare them since we’d have to throw them out if nobody purchases it within a certain time. It normally takes five to seven minutes to cook these items.)

    Customer: “Hi, I’d like a [food item], please.”

    Me: “Sure, that’ll be [total].”

    Customer: *hands money* “Thank you.”

    Me: “No, problem, here’s your change. Just wait over there until your order is ready.”

    (The manager comes over as I’m making drinks for the customer.)

    Manager: “Did you inform the customer that there will be a five minute wait on [food item]?”

    Me: “I wasn’t aware there was, but I’ll let him know.”

    Manager: “It’s fine. I’ll talk to him; you’re busy.” *to customer* “Excuse me, sir, did you order [food item]?”

    Customer: *irritated* “Yeah, what’s the problem?”

    Manager: “We have to make that item fresh, so it’ll be about five minutes. Is that alright?”

    Customer: “No, it’s not f****** alright! You should have told me earlier. Now I don’t f****** want it!”

    Manager: “I’m sorry, sir. I told you as soon as I found out. If you like, I can offer you a refund, or you can have something else.”

    Customer: “F****** h***. Can’t you do anything right?! I’m not going to f****** wait for my d*** food.”

    Manager: “I’m sorry, sir; it’s not my fault. I’ve given you the option of getting a refund if you’d like one.”

    Cook: *yells to manager* “The [food item] is ready!”

    Manager: “I’m really sorry about the wait, sir, but your food is ready! Would you like it?”

    Customer: “No, just give me my f****** money back.”

    Manager: “It’s ready though. Wouldn’t you rather—”

    Customer: “I want my f****** money! This has been terrible service with your f****** smug tone and inconsiderate attitude. You think you’re better then me and can just f****** act that way!”

    Manager: “I’m sorry you feel that way; have a nice day.”

    Customer: “Yeah, yeah, f*** you.” *stomps out with his money*

    Manager: *to me* “I’m going for a smoke.”

    Price-Rise Of The Machines

    | OH, USA | At The Checkout, Crazy Requests, Technology

    (We recently had a coupon printer installed that gives out coupons to customers. It says “Please take your coupon” whenever it prints.)

    Coupon printer: “Please take your coupon.”

    Customer: “NO! SHUT UP! I’M NOT TAKING MY COUPON!”

    Me: “But… don’t you want your coupon? It’s good for 50 cents off a granola bar.”

    Customer: “I would rather pay full price than do anything a robot tell me to!”

    Lack of Register Does Not Register, Part 2

    | Flemington, NJ, USA | At The Checkout, Extra Stupid, Technology

    (I am a cashier at a retail store, keeping an eye on the self-checkout area. I am not supposed to ring up customers on the machines, only assist whenever there’s a problem. A woman comes up to me with a few items.)

    Customer: “Hi, you need to ring me up.”

    Me: “This is the self-checkout. The ladies over there would be happy to take you if you don’t want to use the machines.”

    Customer: “This is self-checkout?”

    Me: “Yes, ma’am.”

    Customer: “Oh, I hate these self-check things. Can’t you just ring me up at that register there?”

    (She points at a computer monitor, lying on the floor near the garbage cans, with a large crack easily visible across the screen. I think she’s joking but realize she’s serious.)

    Me: “Um. No, I can’t, sorry. If you don’t want to use the self-checkout, the cashiers right behind us can—”

    Customer: “Why can’t you ring me up at that register?!”

    Me: “Well, because that’s not a register, ma’am.”

    Customer: “You don’t call that thing over there a register?”

    Me: “Nope, I call that a broken computer monitor.”

    Customer: “What’s the difference?”

    Related:
    Lack of Register Does Not Register

    Checks Are Out At The Checkout

    | Portland, OR, USA | At The Checkout, Family & Kids, Money, Top

    (I am a cashier at a big grocery store. I have a customer in with her daughter in her mid-teens. The customer writes a check, but because of a store policy, a manager has to override an error that will pop up if the customer does not have at least $700 of checks in the system. My manager is at the check stand right next to me helping a customer, and knows that I need her assistance.)

    Customer: “I can’t believe this is happening again! This happened last time!”

    Me: “I’m sorry. Our system is just very particular. You must write a certain amount of checks or spend a certain amount of money every month in order for it to not need an ID and a manager override. I know it is a pain, and I’m sorry.”

    Customer: “Well this is just f****** ridiculous. I don’t think I’m going to shop here anymore.”

    Me: “Again, I’m sorry that we have to do this. My manager will be here in just a second; she just needs to finish helping another customer.”

    Customer: “And this is just so stupid because I’ve written checks here before!”

    Me: “I understand. Our system is just very picky when it comes to checks and—”

    (At this point the customer begins to dramatically flip through her checkbook, and shoves it in my face so I can see all of the entries.)

    Customer: “SEE?!”

    Me: “Again, I understand, but the system says you only have $300 in the system, and it needs at least $750. I know it is a bit ridiculous, but in the end it is for the company’s and your safety, and there isn’t really anything I can do about it.”

    Customer: “I know it’s not your fault, but—”

    (To my surprise, the customer’s daughter suddenly speaks up in my defense.)

    Customer’s Daughter: “Then why are you being such a b**** to her, mom? You are so embarrassing. Maybe you should use a debit card like normal people. I’ll be in the car waiting.”

    (The mother and I both stare in shock while my manager comes over and runs the check through with no further hassle. Sometimes, it’s nice when someone says exactly what you’re thinking, especially when you can’t say it yourself!)

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