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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!

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The Gift Card That Keeps On Giving

| Lafayette, LA, USA | At The Checkout, Bizarre, Popular

(Most purchases at my store are usually between $100 and $300. The higher purchases are usually for firearms and ammunition. Customers can place any amount they want on our gift cards, but those amounts usually vary between $20 and $100. One day, a customer comes up to my register with a cart full of fishing gear, including two $300 coolers. I ring him up.)

Me: “That’ll be [amount over $1500].”

(He smiles and hands me a gift card. He has a whole stack of them in his hands. I hold out my hand for the rest, but he holds onto the stack. I scan the first card, which takes $250 off his purchase.)

Me: “Okay, you owe [amount over $1250].”

(He smiles and hands me a second card.)

Me: Okay, now you owe [amount over $1000].

(He smiles and hands another card.)

Me: “[Amount over $750].”

(I am gathering a stack of used gift cards on top of my register at this point, and we’re only halfway through the stack still in his hands. He hands me the next card.)

Me: “[Amount over $500].”

(He hands me another card.)

Me: “[Amount over $250].”

(He hands me his second-to-last card.)

Me: “[Amount around $50.]”

(He hands me his last card. By this point, we’re both laughing.)

Me: “And you have [amount around 200] left on this card.” *I hand him his last gift card and a receipt.* “Have a good one!”

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They’re Winging It

, | MD, USA | At The Checkout, Extra Stupid, Food & Drink

Me: “Hey, how are you doing?”

Customer: “I’m not ready yet!”

(We’re trained to greet the customer, ask for his or her name, then proceed through the order, so I wait for twenty seconds or so.)

Me: “Could I have your name, please?”

Customer: “Don’t rush me!”

(A minute later.)

Customer: “I’d like wings.”

Me: “All right, could I have your name for the order, please?”

Customer: “I’m not done yet!”

Me: “We ask for the name at the beginning of the order.”

Customer: “[Name].”

Me: “All right, [Name], do you want a combo or just the wings?”

Customer: “Just wings.”

Me: “Okay, how many would you like?”

Customer: “Ten.”

Me: “All right, [Name], and will those be boneless or regular wings?”

Customer: “I want the wings.”

Me: “Yes, boneless or regular?”

Customer: “Yeah, hot.”

Me: *louder* “Boneless or regular?”

Customer: “What do you mean?”

Me: “Regular wings are the… regular… wings, like drumsticks and flats. Boneless wings are… without bone.”

Customer: “Yeah, the regular wings. That’s what I said!”

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Some Passive Aggressiveness Is On The Menu

| GA, USA | At The Checkout, Food & Drink, Popular

(I am a kitchen manager for a popular donut chain and often work the drive-thru window taking orders. It seems people don’t know that prices were on the menu board.)

Me: “America runs on [Restaurant]. How may I help you?”

Customer: “How much is [food item]?”

Me: “Just a second; let me check.”

(I walk out the back door and stand between the customer in her car and the menu board and look at the price. While still standing there I push the button on my headset and say:)

Me: “It’s [price]. Would you like a coffee with that?”

(When I got back inside, the store manager, who also had a headset on, was dying laughing. When the lady got to the window she never said a word.)