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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!

An Unrewarding Experience

| St. John's, NL, Canada | At The Checkout, Bizarre

(I work as a supervisor at a grocery store, and we have just launched a new rewards card for the store, and started asking every customer with their order if they want to get the new card. I am called over to this exchange between a cashier:)

Me: “Hi, is there a problem?”

Customer: “Your cashier is trying to track me.”

Me: “Excuse me?” *I exchange glances with my cashier, who is very confused, too*

Customer: “What don’t you understand?”

Me: “How is she trying to track you?”

Customer: “She wants me to sign up for this card so the government can see everything I buy and everywhere I go.”

(I almost start laughing, before I realize he is serious.)

Me: “Sir, this card is just a rewards card for us to keep competitive with [Competitor].”

Customer: “I don’t shop there because they’re trying to track me, too. This government wants to get me. I’ve gotta get out of here.”

(The customer proceeded to walk out of the story, leaving his groceries behind, and I haven’t seen him since.)

Big Mac Attack

, | Fond du Lac, WI, USA | At The Checkout, Food & Drink, Health & Body

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

Customer’s Wife: “Oh! No onion on that.”

Customer: “Oh, yeah, no onions. I’m really allergic to them.”

Me: “You know that there’s onions in the Mac Sauce, right?”

Customer: “Really? Wow, well that explains why I feel funny every time I eat a Big Mac…”

Be My Guest And Just Leave

| San Francisco, CA, USA | At The Checkout, Bad Behavior

(I work at a national chain store that sometimes offers promotional gift cards for certain purchases. These change constantly and people are always getting them wrong; they buy the wrong brand, wrong size, or don’t buy enough to qualify. If they point out a problem during the checkout there’s usually something I can do (ranging from figuring out where they went wrong to just giving them $5 off something if they complain enough). Once the transaction is over, however, it’s over. I can’t do anything.)

Woman: “Um, I was supposed to get a $5 gift card?

Me: *holding the receipt for the completed transaction* “Oh, really? What do you think was supposed to show it? It didn’t come up on the register.”

Woman: “These!” *waves small packets of feminine hygiene products*

Me: “Actually, I think the promotion is on the larger size. It didn’t come up.”

Woman: “You think, or you know?”

Me: “Well, these promotions change all the time and it didn’t ring up, so…”

Woman: “Can you just give me the gift card?”

Me: “Well, this transaction is actually completed. However, if you want to go upstairs to Guest Services I’m sure they’ll be able to sort it out for you.”

Woman: “Are you kidding me? I have to go to Guest Services for this? I don’t want to go that far!”

(We’re at the foot of the escalator that drops people off right in front of Guest Services. She’d have to walk about a hundred feet, not counting the escalator.)

Me: “Uh, okay. I’m really sorry, but there’s nothing that I can do about it now. The transaction is over.”

Woman: “I’m not going to Guest Services! Just take the [Product] off. I don’t want them!”

Me: “Ma’am, I can’t—”

Woman: “I only bought them for the gift card. If I’m not going to get the gift card I don’t want them, and I want them taken off.”

Me: “…Okay, so. Returns are upstairs at Guest Services.”