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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!

    Chipping Away Until You Get The Answer

    , | MI, USA | At The Checkout, Food & Drink, Funny Names

    (An elderly customer walks into my store.)

    Me: “Hi! I can take your order when you’re ready!”

    Customer: “I’d like some chips.”

    (The customer doesn’t have a noticeable accent so I assume he isn’t from England.)

    Me: “We don’t have chips, but would you like fries instead?”

    Customer: “No, I’d like some chips!”

    (The elderly customer then points to the chocolate chip cookies we have sitting out front.)

    Customer: “You know what I want! I want chips!”

    Me: “Oh, you mean chocolate chips!”

    Customer: “No! Chips!”

    Me: “I’m sorry, sir, I don’t understand. If you’d like I can get my manager and see if he knows what you’re talking about?”

    Customer: “I don’t want your manager! I want chips! You know they’re like chips of chicken!”

    Me: “Oh, you mean chicken nuggets?”

    Customer: “Yes! There you go! Chicken chips! See, I told you, you had chips!”

    Don’t Always Have To Scream For Ice-Cream

    | WI, USA | At The Checkout, Awesome Customers, Food & Drink, Top

    (It is a busy night in the drive thru. I am trying desperately to catch up on the significant line, and the previous customer had asked for directions at the window after receiving her food. We sometimes miscalculate and get our dessert items ready too early, so the next customer’s ice cream is getting a little ‘melty.’ I know I should re-scoop it, but the line is so long and I hope she won’t mind.)

    Me: “Here’s your ice cream. [Price], please.”

    Customer: “I don’t mean to be a b****, as I know it’s not your fault they asked for directions, but could you re-scoop this for me?”

    Me: *ashamed* “Of course. I’m sorry.”

    (I get her a new one. She produces a $10 bill.)

    Customer: “Can you break this ten into two fives for me?”

    Me: “Here you are.”

    Customer:  *only takes one of the bills* “That one’s for you! Thanks for getting me a new ice cream!”

    Me: *astounded* “Thank you so much!”

    That Reasoning Doesn’t Fly

    | Boston, MA, USA | At The Checkout, Food & Drink, Tourists/Travel, Transportation

    (I work in a duty free shop and a customer wanting to buy a bottle of cognac comes to my register. All is well until I ask for his boarding pass.)

    Me: “All right, sir, may I see your boarding pass?”

    Customer #1: “No.”

    Me: “Then you can’t buy this cognac.”

    Customer #1: “Why not?”

    Me: “Alcohol is a customs bonded item, and as such can only be bought by people leaving the country directly from this point. I need to see your boarding pass so I can make sure you are doing so.”

    Customer #1: “But I am French.”

    Me: “That does not mean you are leaving the country.”

    Customer #1: “But this is an international airport.”

    Me: “Domestic flights go out of this airport regularly.”

    Customer #1: “Well, I won’t show you my boarding pass.”

    Me: “Than you can’t buy the cognac.”

    Customer #1: “But I want to.”

    Me: “Then I need to see your boarding pass.”

    Customer #1: “NO!”

    (This goes on for five minutes and the customer leaves in a huff without his cognac. The lady behind him comes up toting a five pound bag of pretzel M&Ms, which, like all candy, is not bonded.)

    Customer #2: “Um, I’m on a domestic flight to Phoenix. Can I buy these M&Ms?”

    Me: “Sure. Candy isn’t bonded.”

    Customer #2: “Okay.” *looks at the cognac* “After that last guy you might need some of that yourself.”

    A Spoonful Of Violence Helps The Medicine Go Down

    | OH, USA | At The Checkout, Health & Body, Money, Top

    (I am on quite a few prescription medicines, one of which costs $170. I am picking up four refills.)

    Pharmacy Clerk: “This one is $1.17. The second is $7.79. And the third is…”

    (He trails off and takes a few steps back from the counter separating us.)

    Pharmacy Clerk: “Uh… do you know how much this costs?”

    Me: “If it’s the [Brand Name Medicine], then it will be about $170.”

    (He looks relieved and returns to the register.)

    Pharmacy Clerk: “Sorry. On my first week on the job, a customer assaulted me after hearing the price of his medicine.”

    Take A Swipe At Reading

    | Raleigh, NC, USA | At The Checkout, Extra Stupid, Technology

    (The card reader in my store is a little different, in that it asks you to select credit or debit before you swipe. It is much more intuitive than most, and the machine gives very explicit instructions, but it still trips people up. The following happens at least 10 times a day.)

    Me: “Your total is [total]. Go ahead and select credit or debit on the screen first, and then swipe.”

    Customer: “Credit.” *swipes card*

    Me: “You’ll need to hit the credit button first, and then you can swipe.”

    Customer: *swipes card*

    Me: “Ma’am, if you’re using credit, you’ll need to hit the blue button on the screen. After you do that, you can swipe your card.”

    Customer: *hits button on screen*

    (Screen now reads, in large letters, PLEASE SWIPE CARD.)

    Customer: *stares blankly at screen*

    Me: “Ma’am… swipe your card now.”

    Customer: *swipes card* “Why is it asking for a PIN? This doesn’t have a PIN, it’s a credit card! Why doesn’t your machine work?!”

    Me: “It’s asking for a PIN, because you hit the green debit button instead of the blue credit button. Hit CANCEL, and we can start this again…”

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