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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!

    Rage Before Beauty, Part 2

    | Maine, USA | At The Checkout, Family & Kids, Money

    (A customer in her late 60s walks up with her granddaughter, who is probably 18-20 in age.)

    Customer: “I want to return this crap!”

    Me: “Alright, ma’am, do you have your receipt?”

    Customer: “No, but you’d better take it back!”

    (I page a manager to approve a no-receipt return. It gets approved and we explain it’ll have to go on a store gift card. The customer is still angry, but the granddaughter helps us calm her down.)

    Me: “Alright, ma’am, here’s your gift card. There’s $24.83 on it.”

    (The customer snatches the card from my hands. Meanwhile, she watches the POS terminal like a hawk to see how things add up.)

    Customer: “NO, NO, NO! That was buy one, get one free!”

    Me: “Sorry, ma’am let me have someone check…”

    (As I page for someone on the floor to price check, I see a line of angry people forming behind her. We’re an insanely busy store in the summer, and it’s been a good ten minutes by this point. My coworker returns from checking the price.)

    Coworker: “It has no tag, or none near it. Where did you see buy one, get one free, ma’am?”

    Customer: “A couple weeks ago!  It was buy one, get one free!”

    Me: “Ma’am, we can’t price modify for a sale a couple weeks old.”

    Customer: “You can and you will. Let me speak to your manager!”

    (I page the manager again, and they approve the modification while giving me a “Get this crazy customer out of our store” look).

    Me: “Alright ma’am, I’ve run your gift card. That leaves $10.21 remaining on your total.”

    Customer: “I should get it free for all the hassle you people put me through here!”

    (The customer throws a 20 at me. I make change and she storms off, with the total transaction time about 16 minutes. Next up is her granddaughter, who is calm and polite. She puts her nail polish on the counter and I ring her up. Whole transaction time? 20 seconds.)

    Me: “Have a nice day!”

    Customer’s Granddaughter: “You too!”

    Customer: *to her granddaughter* “Danielle, are you FINALLY done?! What took you so long?! I swear, you young people are SO inconsiderate, like that idiot behind the counter!”

    Related:
    Rage Before Beauty

    She’s No Bashful Biddy

    | Alberta, Canada | At The Checkout, Awesome Customers, Rude & Risque, Top

    (A sweet little old lady comes up to my till with her walker. She is probably in her nineties or late eighties and looks like your stereotypical sweet old granny.)

    Me: “Good afternoon, Miss! How’s it going today?”

    Little Old Lady: “Quite well, thank you! And calling me ‘Miss’, ha!  You’re such a sweet girl. Made my day!”

    Me: “Glad to be of service! Do you need a hand with your basket?”

    Little Old Lady: “Oh, no, I try to do things for myself even if they’re harder. Keeps me young.”

    (We go through the transaction, chatting away, and at the end she uses her debit card. It’s a chip card and she tries to swipe it, so I correct her.)

    Me: “Oh! That’s a chip card. The stripe probably won’t work, so can you please just slide that right up there in the bottom?”

    Little Old Lady: “What’s that, sorry?”

    Me: “Can you just slide that right up there in the bottom?”

    Little Old Lady: *deadpans* “That’s what she said.”

    (It took about five seconds before I and the other guy in line burst out laughing.)

    Other Customer: “A lady your age saying that? Nice move, ma’am!”

    Little Old Lady: “That’s MISS!” *devilish little grin* “And I’m old, not dead. Have a nice day!”

    (She slowly makes her way out of the store, slow as only the elderly can be. The other customer and I look at one another, tears still wet on my face from laughter.)

    Me: “Best older customer ever.”

    Other Customer: “F*** yes!”

    Scan-dalous

    | Kerang, Victoria, Australia | At The Checkout, Rude & Risque

    (I’m working a cash register at a supermarket.)

    Me: “G’day, how’s it going?”

    Customer: “Yeah, pretty good, thanks.”

    (I begin to scan her items.)

    Me: “So do you have any plans for the rest of your day?”

    Customer: “Yeah, I hope to get laid for the first time in three years!”

    (I look over to see she had amongst her groceries: several punnets of strawberries, dipping chocolate, oysters, condoms, and personal lubricant.)

    Customer: *beaming*

    (I return to scanning her items in silence. She pays and gathers her items.)

    Me: “Have a great night.”

    Customer: “Oh, believe me, I will!”

    Common Courtesies: Not For Commoners, Part 2

    | New York, USA | At The Checkout, Family & Kids, Wild & Unruly

    (A couple and their 5-year-old child comes into my 20 items or less lane. However, they have a large, overflowing cart with clearly more than 20 items.)

    Me: “Hi, I’m sorry but are you aware this lane is 20 items or less?”

    Customer: “Does it matter? Take care of us!”

    (The customer starts unloading her items on the tiny counter. Meanwhile, her child is standing in the cart and starts throwing things.)

    Me: *to the customer’s child* “Alright, sweetie, please don’t throw things.”

    Customer: “Excuse me? Don’t you dare tell my kid what to do!”

    Me: “Ma’am, he’s throwing things. He could hurt—”

    (At this point the kid hefts up a very large can of broth and throws it at me, hitting me in the face.)

    Customer’s Child: *laughs*

    Customer: “Oh! Isn’t he cute?! Good job sweetie! We don’t treat these people nice. It’s good to learn early to make them shut up!”

    (Another cashier took over for me so I could attend to my injuries, but before security could get there they had left the store. Thankfully nothing was broken, but I had a pretty bashed up looking face for a while!)

    Related:
    Common Courtesies: Not For Commoners

    It Pays To Be Patient, Part 4

    | MA, USA | At The Checkout, Money

    (I work in a medical uniform store. The first customer of the day comes into our store with her father; she’s making a big return on several different items. Instead of doing an even exchange, she picks out different clothes as well as adding a watch that wasn’t originally with the purchase. I’ve rung everything through and the new total is five or six dollars above $100. This is important, as the place she works at gives her a $100 allowance at our store.)

    Customer: “Are you sure the price is right?”

    Me: “Yes, ma’am, one of the tops rang up above price, but I knocked it down to the ticketed price for you.”

    Customer: “What about the money from my return?”

    Me: “It was taken out of what you were buying already. [Price] is what’s left over after the return money has been taken out.”

    Customer: “That’s still not right. I took a cheaper pair of shoes to afford the watch.”

    Me: “Let me show you how this breaks down…”

    (I take out the register calculator and add up her returns for her. I then add up her purchases total, which comes out bigger than the returns. She makes me repeat this another time. Meanwhile a line is starting to form with other customers; it’s a small store and I’m the only register open. She decides to switch tactics.)

    Customer: “I think I was overcharged when I first bought the clothes. The tag and the charge on the receipt don’t match, see?”

    (She holds out the original receipt and makes me recalculate everything again. Sure enough, she hasn’t been overcharged on anything. As the line is growing longer, she switches tactics again.)

    Customer: “I get a discount for working at [hospital] right?”

    Me: “Normally, yes, but that’s only for full priced items. All of yours are already on sale. I can’t compound discounts.”

    Customer: “But I work at [hospital]! You should give me the discount!”

    Me: “Ma’am, store policy says I cannot put a hospital discount on something that is already discounted.”

    Customer: “The girl who rang me up the first time did!”

    Me: “Ma’am, we just went through the receipt. Nowhere were you given a hospital discount when the item was already on sale. And, regardless, that was her and this is me; store policy says I cannot compound the discount.”

    (The customer opens her mouth to try again, but thankfully her father, who has been patiently waiting along with the other customers in line, intervenes.)

    Customer’s Father: “She has given you all the discounts she can. Here, I will pay for it.”

    (He hands me the money, I finish the transaction, and they leave. The next customer in line steps up and I thank her for waiting.)

    Next Customer: “You have a lot of patience, young lady! I would have kicked her out of the store a long time ago.”

    Related:
    It Pays To Be Patient, Part 3
    It Pays To Be Patient, Part 2
    It Pays To Be Patient


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