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!

That Benefit Went Straight Down The Faucet

| Rio Rancho, NM, USA | At The Checkout, Criminal/Illegal, Money

(I work at a home improvement store. A customer has picked out a faucet.)

Me: “Great! We have that exact one in stock. While I set up this order, I will have someone go get it from the warehouse for you!”

Customer: “That’s perfect! What do I owe?”

Me: “$103.00. That can be cash, check, or card.”

Customer: *hands me a card*

Me: “Uhm. This is a EBT card.”

Customer: “Yeah, I know.”

Me: “Uhm, food stamps only work on food and necessities. Did you mean to give me a credit or debit?”

Customer: “No, just charge the card I gave you.”

Me: “Uhm, ma’am, I cannot do that. This is a state issued EBT card. It’s not meant to be used for household fixtures, just food and some basic supplies. My computer won’t even accept it if I did enter the information.”

Customer: “I want it charged to that card! That is why I gave you that card!”

Me: “I understand that; however, that is not how these cards work.”

Customer: “Well, why not?”

Me: “Because the state issues them for families who cannot afford food, water, formula, or other needs. But it has to be for a need that is basic to supporting life, not things like faucets or even clothes.”

Customer: “But I NEED a new faucet.”

Me: “Well, if you are renting, the owner of the property should be the own who replaces it. If you own your residence, I can ring this up with cash, check, or a bank issued card.”

Customer: “Just swipe the card I gave you!”

Me: “This is a state issued food stamp card. I cannot.”

Customer: “This is discrimination because you think I am poor!”

Me: “Ma’am, I do not judge based on how much money a customer happens to have. However, I can refuse forms of payment that either do not work, will not work, or are illegal to attempt to use.”

Customer: “Illegal? Now you don’t think I am American!”

Me: “What? I said forms of payment that are illegal to use.”

Customer: “You are calling me an illegal!”

Me: “Ma’am, I cannot help you. Nor can I sell you this with the payment you offered me. You can either give me a legal, bank issued form of payment or not buy from this store.”

Customer: “How dare you!” *flounces out*

Meat Her Halfway

| NY, USA | At The Checkout, Family & Kids, Food & Drink

(I’m working the self-scan machines. A grandfather comes by with his granddaughter in the seat of the shopping cart. He takes a pack of cookies from the nearby shelf and gives them to her.)

Grandfather: “Okay, honey, what should we get next?”

Granddaughter: “MEAT!”

Me: *chuckling* “I guess she’s a little carnivore, huh?”

Grandfather: *also laughing* “Well, her mom’s a vegetarian so I can’t really give her meat.”

Granddaughter: *bouncing in the seat with a big smile* “MEAT MEAT MEAT MEAT MEAT MEAT!”

Me: “I don’t think she’s a vegetarian, sir.”

This Is Why We’re In A Recession, Part 41

| USA | At The Checkout, Extra Stupid, Money

(I’m a cashier at a grocery store. I’ve just run up this customer’s items and she slides a card through the EFTPOS. I get a ‘do not honor’ error on my screen. For whatever reason, sometimes our machines give us this error if someone enters the wrong PIN.)

Me: “I’m sorry, ma’am. Could you try that again, please?”

(She slides it through again and I see she’s selecting credit, not debit, so it can’t be the incorrect PIN. I get the error message again.)

Me: “I’m very sorry, ma’am, but it’s not going through. Do you have another form of payment?”

Customer: “Oh, sure!”

(She turns to her husband, who dutifully spreads out like a deck of cards at least 15 credit and debit cards. I stare, mouth agape, as she carefully chooses one and slides it through.)

Me: “Uh… well, that one worked.”

Customer: *laughs* “Of course it did! When you run out of money on one, you just move on to the next card in line!”

(Her husband nods and they gather up their groceries. The next customer comes up and shakes her head.)

Customer #2: “I feel sorry for the poor card rep who’ll have to explain to those idiots that money isn’t free when they’re $300,000 in debt.”

Me: “Amen, sister.”

Related:
This Is Why We’re In A Recession, Part 40
This Is Why We’re In A Recession, Part 39
This Is Why We’re In A Recession, Part 38

Noodling Around The Options

| ON, Canada | At The Checkout, Food & Drink, Money

(Our restaurant has some pretty popular combo dinners. Some people like to change some of the dishes in them. If the dish they want to substitute is close in price to the original, it’s no problem; however, if they want a more expensive dish, we do charge for the difference.)

Woman: “Yes, I want this dinner here, but what is this?”

Me: “The chow mein? That’s mainly bean sprouts with chicken, little bit of mushrooms.”

Woman: *pulls a face* “No, no, I don’t want those. I’m looking for a dish with noodles. Can I do that?”

Me: “Sure, but there’ll be a small charge for the switch. What did you want in the noodles?”

Woman: “I want to keep the chicken, and maybe some vegetables.”

Me: “Okay, that’ll be a $3 charge.”

Woman: “What? Why?”

Me: “Well, the thing with the bean sprouts is a small plate, and it’s $6, while the one with the noodles is a bigger plate, and costs almost $9. It’s just the price difference in the dishes.”

Woman: *pulls another face* “No, that’s too much.”

(She proceeds to keep the bean sprouts, add a $4 dish to her order, and then wants to pay.)

Woman: “Is a $100 bill okay?”

The Times, They Are a’Changin’

| MD, USA | At The Checkout, Bizarre, Money

Me: “Your total is $4.24.”

Customer: *hands me a twenty*

Me: “Here’s your change.” *hands back $15.76* “Have a wonderful day!”

Customer: “… Didn’t I give you a five?”

Me: “I don’t think so…”

(Customer checks her pocket and pulls out the five she meant to give me.)

Me: “Doesn’t this usually happen the other way around?”

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