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!

Should Have Check-ed The Date

| Arlington, VA, USA | At The Checkout, Money

(I am the unlucky customer stuck behind this transaction. It’s the holiday season, so the store is very busy.)

Customer: *after all items have been scanned* “Yes, what’s your return policy on this [Large Electronic Item]?”

Cashier: “For this item, it is a 30-day return policy, but you must have the receipt and all of the original packaging.”

Customer: “So if it doesn’t work, I can bring it back tomorrow?”

Cashier: “Yes.”

Customer: “Okay, let me just get my checkbook.”

Cashier: “If you are paying by check, there is a three to five day waiting period before we can issue a refund.”

Customer: “You just said I could return this tomorrow. Which is it?”

Cashier: “We have to wait for the check to clear before refunding you.”

Customer: “MANAGER! NOW!”

(The manager shows up and the cashier explains the question.)

Customer: “I want to buy this tonight and if I don’t like it, I want to return it tomorrow.”

Manager: “That’s not possible; it takes a few days to process checks. We don’t get many, so they only get deposited twice a week.”

Customer: “Just keep it in your safe and if I don’t like it, you can just tear it up when I bring back the item.”

Manager: “That’s not how that works…”

Customer: “Why not? This is 2016! Can’t you figure out a faster way to handle checks?”

(At this point, I step in.)

Me: “Yes, it’s 2016. Who writes checks anymore? Either buy it and wait to return it or use a credit card or debit card like everyone else, but don’t hold up the rest of us because you haven’t learned that writing a check is the slowest form of payment in existence — for everyone involved.”

Customer: *shocked look* “Can she talk to me like that?”

Manager: “She’s not an employee, so…”

(The lady pulls out a credit card and pays. Really? You had one the whole time, lady?! After she has left…)

Cashier: *to me* “Thanks. I’m not allowed to say what I think!”

Me: “I’ve worked retail management; it’s my duty now to speak up when customers suck.”

Cashier: “I’m so sorry; your candy fell into the bag before I could scan it. Have a great night!”

A Cancer On Society

| CT, USA | At The Checkout, Bizarre, Health & Body

(Since it’s nearing the Christmas season, we are currently doing donations for a cancer foundation. I lost my grandfather to lung cancer earlier this year.)

Me: “Your total is $[total]. Would you like to donate a dollar to [Cancer Foundation] today?”

Customer: “No, I would not.”

Me: “Okay, no problem.” *hits ‘no’ to proceed to payment screen and am about to tell the customer she can swipe her card*

Customer: “I won’t donate because there’s already a cure for cancer. It’s the biggest conspiracy out there.” *laughs*

(All I could do was just fake laugh, smile, and wish her a good day. If you don’t want to donate, just say no. That’s it!)

Redhead Responding To Red Alert

| OK, USA | At The Checkout, Awesome Customers, Bad Behavior, Criminal & Illegal, Wild & Unruly

(I am in line behind a young man who was obviously inebriated. He is trying to buy alcohol without an ID.)

Cashier: “Sir, I’m sorry, but I can’t sell you this beer without an ID.”

Customer: “F*** you! I am old enough. Do I look like a kid?”

Cashier: “No, sir, but it’s the law and I could lose my job.”

Customer: “It’s in the d*** truck. Do you want me to go all the way to the truck and get it?”

Cashier: “Sir, if you’d like to go get your ID I’d be happy to set the beer to the side for you.”

Customer: “You f****** b****! I don’t have to—”

(He’s interrupted when a slender, red-haired woman comes up behind him, slips her arms under his and pushes forward, hard. He’s bent over and unable to move his arms.)

Redhead Woman: “Now, that’s just about enough. I let the manager know, and my daughter is calling the police.”

(He tries to pull away and she takes her knee and pushes it hard into his back, making him yelp.)

Redhead Woman: “No, I said that’s enough. You’re going to apologize to the cashier here for fouling up her day, and then you’re going to be still until the cops come.”

(The manager comes sprinting over with security in tow, who take control of the angry guy while the cashier explains and the redheaded woman brushes off the front of her dress. Her daughter hands her the phone and the woman talks to the police for a moment and hangs up.)

Manager: “Thank you, ma’am.”

Redhead Woman: “Not at all. I cashiered in college and it flat sucked. People are d***s.”

(The woman says something to her daughter in a foreign language and the kid grins and looks over at the guy. The cashier rings me up, and as I’m getting ready to leave, I walk past where the cops have the guy cuffed and sitting while they talk to the redheaded woman. I pass by the kid and smile at her.)

Me: “Your mom is pretty tough, huh?”

Kid: “My mom is a bad-a**.”

(Totally made my day.)

The Joke Is Free, But The Twist Will Cost You

| Moreno Valley, CA, USA | At The Checkout, Awesome Workers, Prank

(I want to buy my first pocket knife. I go into the local knife/sword shop in our mall and notice some cool, basic pocket knives on sale; buy-one get-one. As I go up to purchase them the second one won’t scan.)

Employee: *trying repeatedly to scan the barcode* “Odd, it seems to not want to scan. This may take a moment.”

Me: *chuckles a little but not making the “must be free” joke*

Employee: *completely straight face* “Well I’m sorry, but items that don’t scan are $100k. Will that be cash, debit, or credit?”

(I was shocked for a couple seconds before we both started laughing and he found another code to scan for the same knife. Best twist on the “it won’t scan; it must be free!” joke I’ve ever seen!)

Not So Dosa Docile

| USA | At The Checkout, Bad Behavior, Food & Drink, Wild & Unruly

(It’s spring break and I’m working as a cook at a family friend’s Indian restaurant for free as a favor for the week because I’m a student. Most of the chefs working at the restaurant are Indians that just immigrated here, and they don’t like to talk back because their English isn’t great and they fear getting into trouble. It’s a Friday night and because it’s spring break, there are a lot of people, so many so that there’s a wait to be seated. The restaurant specializes in dosas, which are like crepes, except made of rice batter and black gram. Most people like to add onions or chills to them. It’s also a restaurant that lets you see the chefs making your food.)

Customer: *orders his dosa with onions and then walks over to the counter to watch me cook*

Me: *puts the batter on the pan and then adds the onions, like usual*

Customer: “No, YOU’RE DOING IT WRONG! YOU HAVE TO FRY THE ONIONS SEPARATELY FIRST!”

Me: *taken aback by his tone, but decides to do what he says* “I’m sorry sir. I’ll make it again.”

(I have to dump out the batter I was using because it would be burnt in the amount of time it takes to fry the onions.)

Me: *fries the onions separately then puts it on fresh batter*

Customer: “NO, YOU HAVE TO MIX THE BATTER AND THE ONIONS TOGETHER. START OVER!”

Me: *losing my patience at this point* “Sir, there are a lot of customers behind you and I don’t have time to make your order again. If you don’t like the way we cook the food, you’re happy to make it yourself on your own time at home.”

Customer: *visibly angry* “I’LL HAVE YOU SENT BACK TO INDIA. HOW DARE YOU TALK TO A PAYING CUSTOMER IN THAT TONE!”

Me: *at this point, my patience is completely gone* “I’m an American citizen, so it’s highly unlikely that I’ll be sent back to India for not satisfying your dietary needs. Keep yelling, and I’ll kick you out, or better yet, file a harassment claim.”

Customer: *still not getting it* “HOW DARE YOU! I WANT TO TALK TO THE MANAGER!”

(Before I can respond, the owner comes out to see what’s going on.)

Owner: “I’m the owner. Is there a problem?”

Customer: “YES, YOUR EMPLOYEE IS BEING RUDE AND REFUSING TO SERVE ME!”

Owner: *looks at me* “[My Name], is that true?”

Me: “No, I—”

Customer: *interrupts* “SHE’S LYING. THE LITTLE B**** JUST WANTS TO KEEP HER JOB!”

Owner: “I’m going to have to ask you to leave. First of all, [My Name] doesn’t even work here officially. She’s just helping out as a favor. And second, I don’t serve customers who swear at my employees anyway. So, are you going to leave or do I have to call the police?”

Customer: *thinks for a moment before storming out of the restaurant, still visibly angry*

(And the kicker? He was making such a fuss over an order worth just six dollars.)

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