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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!

    High On The Milk Of Human Kindness

    | ME, USA | At The Checkout, Awesome Customers, Food & Drink

    (I work at a small independent grocery store. I’m helping an older woman check out. The transaction goes smoothly until she gets a look of sudden realization.)

    Customer: “Oh! What do I do about unpaid milk quarts?”

    Me: “I’m sorry, ma’am?”

    Customer: “I was here the other day and I had two milk quarts but I didn’t get them.”

    Me: “You didn’t get them? Would you like to get them now? Or did you mean you accidentally left them behind?”

    Customer: “Oh, no, no. I… oh. dear. I didn’t see them in my cart and I’d forgotten I grabbed them, so I left without paying for them. I didn’t even think about it until I got home and checked my receipt.”

    Me: “Oh! Oh, I understand. Well, I could go grab a quart and ring it in with this order?”

    Customer: “Okay!”

    (I ask her what brand and kind of milk she got, then go fetch it and add two to her order.)

    Customer: “I’m sorry about that. I didn’t mean to not pay for them.”

    Me: “Oh gosh. No, don’t be sorry! Thank you for your honesty. Most people would have just been like ‘sweet, free milk’ when they realized what had happened.”

    Customer: “Well, I just couldn’t live with doing that! Your selection might not be as big as [Chain Competitor]‘s, but I’ve been shopping here since the current owner’s father was running the place. Everyone is always so helpful. I just couldn’t do something so unethical and mean!”

    (It’s not a glamorous job, but customers like her make me glad I’m working for a business like that!)

    Related:
    Low On The Milk Of Human Kindness

    A Cancer Of Society

    | Knoxville, TN, USA | At The Checkout, Bad Behavior, Health & Body

    (Our store is selling stuffed toys to give to children undergoing cancer treatment. I’m on register checking out a couple.)

    Me: “Would you like to purchase one of the toys and donate it to a child?”

    (The customer reaches for one of the toys and I think I’ve made a sale. But then she puts the toy back on the counter and says:)

    Customer: “My hunch is that kids who have cancer get enough of these.”

    Rage Against The Machine, Part 3

    | USA | At The Checkout, Extra Stupid, Technology

    (I have finished ringing up a customer’s purchase when he is paying with a debit card at the card reader. My computer tells me the customer clicked the ‘cancel’ button on the machine.)

    Me: “Sir, please re-slide your card and press the green button for credit.”

    Customer: *to his wife* “They should make these things all work the same way.”

    Customer’s Wife: “Honey, it says right there to press the green button for credit.”

    Customer: “I shouldn’t be expected to read that.”

    Related:
    Rage Against The Machine, Part 2
    Rage Against The Machine

    The Return Of The Ninja

    | NH, USA | At The Checkout, Crazy Requests, Wild & Unruly

    (I have a 14-hour shift because a friend of mine is out sick as she is having surgery. It’s about eight hours into the day, and a customer comes in, with something in a paper bag and a giant scowl on her face.)

    Me: “Hello, Ma’am. How may I help you today?”

    Guest: “Yes. I’d like to return this, please? Here’s my receipt, and I want the full amount back.”

    Me: “Yes, Ma’am. I’ll do what I can.”

    (I go to scan the receipt, and it’s declined, because she’s had the items for more than 90 days. We aren’t allowed to return things over that limit without a supervisor’s approval.)

    Me: “I’m very sorry ma’am, but my system is showing me that I can’t return these, due to the fact you purchased them more than 90 days ago.”

    Guest: “That’s f****** stupid! I demand to speak with your supervisor! I work in retail, and we return everything the guest gives us!”

    (I look over, and see my supervisor is busy dealing with another customer.)

    Me: “I’m sorry, ma’am. If you’d just wait right over here for a moment, I’m sure he’ll be with you very shortly.”

    Guest: “No! I’ll not be treated this way!”

    (She takes out her purse, and slams her bag down on the guest services counter, throwing her store card and three gift cards at my face. I catch one, and dodge the others.)

    Me: “Ma’am, I’m going to have to ask you to leave, please. We do not allow that kind of behavior here. I’m very sorry for any inconvenience.”

    Guest: “You know what? You’re simply a stupid little s*** with no chance at ever being successful, or pretty!” *storms out*

    Customer In Line Behind Her: “Well, I never! Miss, you are beautiful, very kind, and I’m in awe of your ninja skills!”

    Me: “Thank you, ma’am. I appreciate it!”

    How To Kiss Problem Customers Goodbye

    | IN, USA | At The Checkout, Bizarre, Crazy Requests, Rude & Risque

    (I normally take my lunch break when my husband gets off work. Today is a really busy day and I’m not getting my lunch break, so my husband has approached me at my checkout line. I give my husband a hug and quick peck on the cheek and say goodbye. I turn to my next customer.)

    Customer: “Where’s mine?”

    Me: “Your what?”

    Customer: *very serious* “My hug and kiss. He got one. I want one, too.”

    Me: “Oh! I only hug and kiss the customers I’m married to.”

    Customer: *disgusted* “Well, that’s not good customer service. I wanted a hug and kiss!”

    (A coworker then decides to step in. He’s a big guy about 6″ tall and very heavy.)

    Coworker: “Well, it would be a shame to let you leave unhappy.”

    Customer: “I know. It’s not fair that she kisses other men but won’t give me one!”

    Coworker: “I’ll take care of that for you.”

    (My coworker walks towards the customer with his arms out.)

    Coworker: “Let me show her what customer service is. I’ll take care of that hug and kiss.”

    Customer: “Uh… No, thanks!” *walks quickly to the front register*

    Coworker: *to me* “What about my hug and kiss?”

    Me: *smirks* “What about that marriage proposal?”

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