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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!

Out Of Line Behavior

| Tampa, FL, USA | At The Checkout, Bad Behavior

(The cafe is run by three people: the owner, the cook, and me, the server. At this time, there is a long line going almost out the door when a customer (Customer #1) decides to skip ahead and form a new line. I say nothing but Customer #2, the person I’m taking care of, does.)

Customer #2: “Miss, the line is back there.”

Customer #1: “We can place orders here, too”

Me: “You can wait there if you want, but I have to serve them first.”

Customer #1: “When did that change?”

Me: “It never did. I always serve those who wait their turn, not necessarily where they decide to stand.”

(Customer #1 walked out with a huff.)

How To Spot A Smoking Gun

| Shrewsbury, PA, USA | At The Checkout, Criminal & Illegal, Family & Kids

(I manage a tobacco store and the law says we cannot sell any tobacco products to anyone under 18 and MUST card if customer looks under 30. A young girl and older woman enter store and at the door the young girl hands cash to older woman. Right away I know that she is underage and older woman is buying for her which is illegal. I know I cannot sell at this point but let them come in to see how it goes down.)

Me: “Hello, how are you? What can I get for you today?”

(Both stand there staring intently at the cigarette display without speaking. After a solid minute I ask the older woman:)

Me: “What brand do you normally smoke?”

(She turns to young girl and says:)

Woman: “Well? What do you smoke?”

(I immediately address the young girl and ask for I.D.)

Woman: *very rudely* “I’m buying them, not her!”

(I state that now I know she is buying for a minor I legally cannot sell either one cigarettes.)

Girl: *starts screaming at woman* “Grandma! WHY DID YOU ASK ME THAT? Now I can’t get my smokes!”

Give It More Than Half A Thought

| Aberystwyth, Wales, UK | At The Checkout, Extra Stupid, Math & Science

(I work in a small corner shop in my university town. I was serving behind the till when a man came up with bin bags, that I wasn’t aware were on a special offer until I scanned them through the till. The following conversation took place when I realised this.)

Me: “Oh, sir, these bin bags are two for £1.20. Would you like to take another?’

Customer: “No. You see, I need double strength bags for heavy duty waste, so I only buy ten, because if I bought twenty they’d only be half strength.”

Judged Unworthy To Judge

| NH, USA | At The Checkout, Holidays, Religion

(I am wearing rabbit ears the week before the Easter holiday while I ring groceries.)

Customer: “And do you go to church on Easter?”

Me: “No, I celebrate with baskets, candy, and a nice family meal.”

Customer: “I don’t think Jesus would approve of that.”

Me: “Luckily for me, Jesus wasn’t exactly known to judge people.”

(That shut him up!)

Upgraded Complaints

, | MT, USA | At The Checkout, Bizarre, Family & Kids, Food & Drink

(I used to work at the local big-name ice cream and burger restaurant eight years ago. The night shift lead is the owner’s son that was just a little runt when I worked there. On this trip through the drive thru I order a small ice cream cone for me and a blended drink for my husband. We get the drink, but while the cashier is taking another order he opens the window:)

Shift Lead: “So, she accidentally made a large cone instead of a small one. Is that still okay?”

Me: *I raise an eyebrow and scoff dramatically* “No! It. Is. Not. Okay! You are giving me more for my money and it’s just unacceptable!”

Shift Lead: *grinning and handing me the cone* “Gosh darn us for giving you a free upgrade, right?”

Me: “Gripe, gripe, gripe. Obligatory threat to complain to your father, young man!”

Shift Lead: *laughing* “Yeah, you have a good night, too!”

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