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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!

    I Say Tomato, You Say Theft

    | CA, USA | At The Checkout, Bad Behavior, Criminal/Illegal, Money

    (As a cashier one of biggest pet peeves is when people eat the items before paying for them.)

    Me: “Hi. How are you today?”

    (I instantly notice customer has three boxes of tomatoes, and is eating away.)

    Customer: “Hi…” *continues eating one of the boxes of tomatoes*

    Me: *scans all three boxes* “Your total is [total].”

    (The customer, still chewing away, swipes her card.)

    Me: “This card was declined.”

    Customer: “Can I try again?”

    (There are only two tomatoes left in box she ate from. She swipes the card again.)

    Me: “It was declined.”

    Customer: “Let me try another card.” *swipes card*

    Me: “That was declined also.”

    Customer: “Let me just go to the ATM to get cash. I’ll be right back.”

    (The customer never came back and got away with eating almost an entire box of tomatoes for free.)

    Your Explanation Has Been Declined

    | Colorado Springs, CO, USA | At The Checkout, Bad Behavior, Money

    (We are in the middle of a huge rush where all of the lines are full. We were trying to get customers out as quickly as possible. This customer has only a few items and her total is about $12. She slides her card, and it is declined. I always try to be polite and couth about it when this happens.)

    Me: “I’m sorry, ma’am. It didn’t like your card. Would you like to try it again?”

    Customer: “What do you mean?”

    Me: “The register didn’t want to take your card. You can try running it again, though, if you want.”

    Customer: “Does this happen a lot?”

    Me: “It happens sometimes.”

    Customer: *suddenly angry and much louder* “This is ridiculous! You need to fix this! It’s such an inconvenience! This always happens to me at this store! You need to fix your card reader!”

    Me: “I’m sorry, ma’am, but it’s not the reader. It read your card just fine but the purchase didn’t go through.”

    Customer: “No! This is terrible customer service! Type it in on your machine!”

    Me: “I can’t do that, ma’am. Our system won’t let us and we aren’t allowed. It read your card just fine. It just wasn’t approved.”

    Customer: “Why not?! I know I have money on this card! It’s your fault and you have to do something about this!”

    Me: “It really isn’t an issue with the card reader or with our system at all. If you want I can suspend this and you can contact your bank to find out what’s going on.”

    Customer: “H***, no! I’m not waiting in line again!” *starts fishing money out of her wallet* “This is ridiculous! Get me your manager! You need to fix your machine!”

    Me: “Ma’am, it really isn’t mine or the machine’s fault. The problem lies with your card.”

    Customer: “No, it doesn’t! I know I have money in this account!”

    Me: “I’m sorry. I don’t know what the issue is. You can try contacting your ba—”

    Customer: “No! What does your screen say?”

    Me: “It says it was declined, ma’am.”

    (The customer then turned beet red and threw money at me, then gathered up her things and went over to the manager. She yelled at him about how I was rude and embarrassed her by saying her card was declined in front of other customers. My manager never talked to me about it, though, and the next three customers in line all told me to keep my chin up and hang on, and hoped that my shift was almost over. It was, thankfully.)

    Got To Give Him Credit For Trying, Part 2

    | Montgomery, AL, USA | At The Checkout, Extra Stupid, Money

    (The credit card machines are down at the fast food place I work for. I am taking orders on the headset.)

    Me: “Thank you for stopping at [Fast Food]. Our credit card machines are currently down so we are only accepting cash right now.”

    Customer: “Oh, that’s fine. I don’t have a credit card. I have a debit card.”

    Me: *trying to hold back laughter* “I’m sorry; ma’am, but we can’t accept a debit card either.”

    Related:
    Got To Give Him Credit For Trying

    Not Going According To Phone Plan

    , | Macedonia, OH, USA | At The Checkout, Family & Kids, Technology

    (I work in a small-scale electronics store and am the only female sales associate in the place. We get paid largely on commission, and specialize in cellular phones. I helped a gentleman in his 50s set up his phone plan.)

    Me: “Well, sir, your plan is almost ready to go. Now I just need some information on who the other phone line is for and we’ll be all set.”

    Customer: *winks creepily* “The other phone is for my son. Good looking kid in his twenties going to law school. You’re a smart girl; save his number and give him a call. You’d be well taken care of.”

    Me: *laughs awkwardly* “I will keep that in mind, sir. In the mean time, let’s get your phone plan taken care of so you can be on your way.”

    Customer: *frantically dials his new phone* “Robert?! It’s Dad. Come to the [Store] right now! There is a girl here you should meet.” *pauses for son’s response* I’d say a six. Hard eight if she put in a little effort.”

    Russian Into Things

    | AZ, USA | At The Checkout, Awesome Customers, Crazy Requests

    (One evening a very obviously young teenager (15 or 16) comes in and tries to buy a pornographic magazine. After I inform him I can’t sell to him without seeing an ID he sticks around and starts chatting me up. I am a very tall woman in my mid-twenties while he was very short and petite.)

    Kid: “You know, the main reason I wanted to buy a magazine is because I’ve been deprived of the company of women for most of my life. You see…” *he leans up against the counter, looks around the room and says in a stage whisper* “…I was trained from birth in a Russian compound to be a deadly assassin.”

    Me: *trying not to laugh* “Go on…”

    Kid: “I’m the best there is at the trade. I became the youngest secret KGB agent.”

    Me: “The KGB actually hasn’t existed for several years now.”

    Kid: *nodding gravely* “That’s because I took them all out when I went rogue. Since then I’ve been freelancing. But now that I have more money than I know what to do with, I’ve been thinking about getting out of the game. You know, finding a beautiful woman and settling down in my French chateau. What do you say? Want me to take you away from all this?”

    Me: *having serious trouble keeping a straight face* “That’s very sweet. But aren’t I a little too old for you? Not to mention I’m nearly two feet taller.”

    Kid: “That’s okay. That’s the way we like ‘em in Russia!”

    Me: “Kid, you are one cocky little s***. If you weren’t underage I’d buy you a drink.”

    Kid: “Well, if you come with me we can go to a country where the legal drinking age is much lower. You know, in Russia I’ve already reached the age of consent. If you get my drift…”

    Me: “Thanks, but I’m afraid I’ll have to pass.”

    Kid: *sigh* “Oh well it, was worth a try. Do svidaniya!”

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