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!

Still Got Meat Between Their Ears

, | Adelaide, SA, Australia | At The Checkout, Food & Drink, Money

(I’m taking drive-thru orders over the speaker box. This particular fast-food chain is known for making burgers “your way” – adding or removing condiments, no matter what the request. Condiments such as lettuce and tomato are free within reason, but some customers try to get away with ordering a plain burger, and then requesting all of the condiments be added, assuming they will get a burger with everything for the price of a plain one.)

Me: “Hi, welcome to [Fast Food Restaurant]. Place your order when you’re ready, please.”

Customer: “I’ll have a hamburger, please.”

Me: “Sure thing; one hamburger is $1.10. Is there anything e-”

Customer: *”On the hamburger, I’d like cheese, lettuce, tomato, onion, and mayonnaise.”

Me: “No worries. That’s one Junior [Brand-name] burger with cheese. That’s $2.85; is there anything else?”

Customer: “… Oh, uh, I’ve changed my mind. How much is a five inch bun on its own?”

Me: “60c.”

Customer: “I’ll get a five inch bun, with sauce, mayo, lettuce, tomato, onion, and cheese.”

Me: “Sure thing. So, that’s a [full-priced burger] minus the meat. That’ll be $3.85… Drive through, please.”

Customer: “D*** IT! You guys are meant to be stupid high-school drop-outs that are easy to fool. Just give me the burger with the meat on it then, thanks.”

Very Slow Burn

| Victoria, BC, Canada | At The Checkout, Bizarre

(I am working in a large grocery store on a busy Saturday. Each till has at least eight people in line, and I can’t even see the end of the queue. I am scanning items as quickly as I possibly can and have not made any mistakes. My next customer is a lady with two overflowing carts of groceries, so I greet her and start scanning her items at my usual pace.)

Customer: “SLOW DOWN!”

Me: *startled* “I’m sorry?”

Customer: “SLOW DOWN! I don’t like it when you scan my items so quickly.”

(I double check her bill but see no mistakes.)

Customer: “And I like to watch you scan every item so don’t touch another thing until I’m done unloading!”

(The line up is still quite long behind her, and she has barely unloaded any items onto the belt. No amount of reasoning will convince her to let me start scanning her items until she has unloaded each product, one by one.)

Me: *resumes scanning*

Customer: “I said not so fast! Do I have to report you to your manager?”

(In the end I had to scan her items at a snail’s pace, several people change queues, and when she finally pays and leaves she’s still muttering about reporting me to my manager.)

Next Customer: “Please scan my items as quickly as you’d like. I don’t mind!”

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Credited With Having No Children

| Canberra, ACT, Australia | At The Checkout, Rude & Risque, Technology

Me: “Enter your PIN, sir.”

(He does, and then removes card straight away, not waiting for the machine.)

Me: “Sir, it looks like you pulled out early—”

Customer: “Story of my life! It’s why I don’t have kids.”

(The next customer and I burst out laughing.)

Has No Loyalty To Common Sense

| Reno, NV, USA | At The Checkout, Crazy Requests, Technology

Me: “If that’s all today, your total is [amount].”

Customer #1: *slides card in card reader* “Why does it say card not recognized?”

Me: *looking at card* “Because that is for [Competing Chain]. We can’t take their cards.”

Customer #1: “Well, that’s stupid. You’re both gas stations. You should honor each other’s cards.”

Me: “I’m sorry, ma’am. I don’t make the rules; I just have to follow them. Do, you have another form of payment?”

Customer #1: “Fine.” *hands over cash*

(I ring up the next customer.)

Me: “If that’s all today, your total is [amount].”

Customer #2: “Oh, I have a loyalty card.”

Me: “Okay, just slide it in the card reader and we’ll see if you have any rewards saved up.”

(Customer #2 slides their card. I see an error message that it isn’t a valid account.)

Me: “Hmm, the card reader didn’t recognize it. Let me try to enter it manually.”

(Customer #2 hands me the card. It is for a grocery chain.)

Me: “Sir, this is a [Grocery Chain] card. We can’t take those here. Do you have a [Our Convenience Store] card?”

Customer #2: “What? But the card says I can use it at the gas station.”

Me: “Yes, at their gas station out front of their store. We can only take our own loyalty cards.”

Customer #2: “Well, that’s misleading.”

(… and this is why I’m incredibly grateful that my last day on that job was last week!)

An Unrewarding Exchange

| Fort Pierce, FL, USA | At The Checkout, Bad Behavior

(At my job, cashiers are required to go through a spiel for every transaction such as offering extended warranties or store credit cards. The big thing we push is the free store Rewards program. Mostly it’s a points/rewards program, but occasionally it also gets the customer a discount as well on certain items.)

Me: “Okay, ma’am, would you like to sign up for our [Rewards Program]?

Customer: “No, you people always want me to sign up for some s***!”

Me: “Not a problem, ma’am.”

(We continue with the transaction. As I hit total, the register prompts me that the customer would save five dollars on her sweaters if she signs up for the program, which I am required to inform her.)

Me: “And ma’am, I know you said you didn’t want the rewards program, but if you sign up today at no charge, you would save $5 on your sweaters! Would you be inter—”

Customer: “NO! God-d***! I already said I don’t want your f****** card! God! Don’t you know how to listen?!”

Me: “That’s perfectly fine, ma’am. I am—”

Customer: “Just let me pay and get the h*** out!”

Me: “Okay, your total is [total]. Sorry I couldn’t help you save some money today.”

Customer: “WHAT PART OF ‘NO’ DO YOU NOT UNDERSTAND, YOU STUPID B****?!”

Me: “All right. Apologies, ma’am.”

(I finish the transaction and the customer leaves. The woman in line behind her has been very quiet but glaring at the previous woman.)

Me: “Hello, ma’am, how are you? Would you like to sign up for [Rewards Program]?”

Next Customer: “I’ll do it, but just so I can get the discount on these sweaters. And before you ask, no, thank you, I would not like the credit card, but unlike that woman, my mother taught me manners.”

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