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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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Your Overfriendly Neighborhood Grocery Store

| CA, USA | At The Checkout, Crazy Requests

(I am working as a cashier at the grocery store I work for. It is early in the day and not every busy. I have a regular customer come up to my register, who is always pleasant, and she, I, and the bagger are having a great conversation. I am at the time the fastest cashier at my store and the bagger is pretty quick as well. During this time I had several people go to different lines because there was no waiting and the regular had a larger order. All her items are bagged and ready to go as soon as the transaction is over. There is now another customer waiting in my line who seems impatient.)

Me: “Okay, you are all set for today! Have a great day!” *I turn to help the next customer* “Hi! How are you today?”

Customer: “You know, you shouldn’t talk so much!”

Me: “Excuse me?”

Customer: “That last person you had! You had other people waiting in your line that got fed up with you talking too much and had to go to other lines! You should not hold other people up just because you talk too much. It is rude.”

Me: “I am sorry, ma’am, if I made you wait too long. It was not my intention.”

Customer: “Well, next time don’t talk too much!”

(She leaves, and I turn to my bagger with a confused look, which the bagger shares.)

Bagger: “Did she just complain that we were being too friendly?”

Me: “Apparently. You know those other customers left because they could tell it was a large order and there were open lines.”

Bagger: “Well, at least working in a grocery store is never boring!”

(The best part was about a week later the regular customer came back through my line, and I had the same bagger again, and she overheard the whole thing. She told us we were wonderful, and that she was actually amazed by how quick we were!)

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The Only Weight I Want To Lose Is The One Behind Me

| MI, USA | At The Checkout, Bad Behavior, Food & Drink, Popular

(I am a customer in this story. I also am only 14, and look really young. I’m in line by myself.)

Me: *to cashier* “Hi! Can I have a kid soft serve and a small chili cheese fry?”

Woman Behind Me: “NO!”

Me: “…”

Cashier: “Well, what do you want?”

Me: “…I want a kids soft serve and a small chili cheese fry.”

Woman Behind Me: “I told you, no!” *to cashier* “Make that a large ice cream, and a double chili cheese fry. Also, get her a large sundae.”

Me: “But… I don’t want that!”

Woman: “Just get it.”

(The cashier leaves to make the food, while I’m in shock.)

Woman Behind Me: “So, how old are you? 10?”

Me: “I’m 14…”

Woman: “Pshh. Already counting calories? Trying to lose weight?”

Me: “…”

(The cashier comes out, holding the sundae, large ice cream, and a double order of fries.)

Me: “I can’t pay for this…”

Woman: “Kids these days, making adults pay for everything they want. Wait here. I’ll get more money.” *she walks away*

Me: “Can I have my food now?”

Cashier: “What do you mean?”

Me: “My food, not what that lady ordered.”

Cashier: “Listen, your mom knows what you should eat. Listen to her.”

Me: “I have never met that lady before.”

Cashier: *awkward pause* “I’ll change your order…”

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The Gift Card That Keeps On Taking

| Boulder, CO, USA | At The Checkout, Math & Science, Money

(I work in a grocery store as a cashier. I am ringing up a customer and we get to the end of the transaction.)

Me: “That’ll be $5.17 for you today.”

(The customer swipes his card and it gets declined. At this point I notice that it’s a Visa gift card.)

Me: “Oh, I’m sorry… It didn’t seem to accept that amount. Do you know the balance that’s left on the card? It’ll probably go through if I type in the specific amount.”

Customer: “I don’t know. You check.”

(He shoves the card at me.)

Me: “Oh, unfortunately our system is only set up to check the balance of our store gift cards. I don’t have a way to check the balance for you. Sorry about that!”

Customer: “You check. You should know the balance.”

Me: “I’m sorry, sir, like I said, our registers are only set up to check balances on store gift cards. That’s a Visa gift card, so I have no way of checking the balance on your gift card.”

Customer: “Why are you making this so difficult? It’s your job to know my balance, not mine.”

Me: “As I said before, I unfortunately have no way of checking your gift card balance on my register, since it’s not a store gift card.”

(Finally the customer takes out a crumpled receipt and tosses it on the counter along with the gift card, which has the original balance written on it.)

Customer: “You do the math and figure it out.”

(I type $3.15 into the register and hit the debit button.)

Me: “Okay, so $3.15 is going on the card and I just need you to swipe one more time.”

Customer: “I already swiped it before. I shouldn’t have to do it again.”

Me: “Oh, you just need to swipe it one more time since it didn’t go through the first time.”

(He finally swipes his card. I thank him and tell him to have a good night.)

Customer: “You should learn to relax.”

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Showing Eventual Medium Returns

| BC, Canada | At The Checkout, Food & Drink

(I am the assistant manager of a fast-food restaurant. We are currently running a promotion where you can get any size soft drink for only $1. I witness this exchange between a customer and my employee. The customer is shouting throughout this.)

Employee: “Hello, what can I get for you?”

Customer: “[Soda]!”

Employee: “Okay, just one [Soda]?”

Customer: “Diet [Soda]!”

Employee: “So that’s one diet [Soda]?”

Customer: “Yes!”

Employee: “Is that a medium size?”

Customer: “No! A [Soda] and diet [Soda]!”

Employee: “Oh, you want a [Soda] and a diet [Soda]?”

Customer: “Yes!”

Employee: “Okay, are they medium size?”

Customer: “Medium! The other large!”

Employee: “Which one?”

Customer: “Large [Soda]! Medium diet [Soda]!”

Employee: “Okay, is that all for you?”

Customer: “Yes!”

(He obtains his order and leaves.)

Me: *to employee* “That was way more complicated than it needed to be.”

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Don’t Have To Deal With Your Cents-less Baggage

| Germany | At The Checkout, Family & Kids, Popular

(I am buying school supplies for my children, with my mother accompanying me. As we get to the checkout, and it is about time to pay for my stuff, the cashier asks me if I’d like a bag for 10 cents.)

Mother: “No, why should we pay for something like a bag?”

Me: “Mom, they ALSO have to pay for their bags. They don’t get them gifted from the bag factory…”

Mother: “Yes, but why should we pay for being their walking advertisement?!”

Me: *looking at my mother, wearing several brand label clothes* “Because you also pay to wear [Big Sports Clothes Brand]’s advertisements around all day.”

(She was silent after that, and yes, I bought a plastic bag.)

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