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!


Coupon And On And On, Part 4

| TX, USA | At The Checkout, Crazy Requests

(It is a few days after our last sales have ended and new sales were added. We have to take down old sale tags and throw away paper ads with coupons in them and make way for the new ones. I’m opening, so I perform my usual duties and get the store ready for customers. I have just thrown away some old paper ads that were under my register because someone had forgotten to the other night. No biggie. I continue opening and finally get the sign on and prepare for the day. Within 10-15 minutes, a customer comes in. I politely greet her, but she ignores me and goes down an aisle. Eventually she comes to my register, ready to check out, and I’m about to complete it.)

Me: “All right, that will be $28.52, ma’am!”

Customer: “Hang on a sec.”

(I watch her walk over to our trash bin and dig out the old paper ads.)

Me: “Umm, what are you doing?”

Customer: “There’s coupons in here I can use.”

Me: “I’m afraid there isn’t. Those are expired, so their codes will not work in the system anymore.”

Customer: “That’s ridiculous.”

(I figured she was going to give up and come and pay for her purchases but I see her starting to tear out coupons from the paper ads. I take a deep breath, knowing what I’m about to have to deal with. She comes back to the register and puts the expired coupons on the counter. I try not to notice what she just did.)

Me: “All right, $28.52, please.”

Customer: *pushes the expired coupons towards me* “You forgot these!”

Me: “I’m sorry ma’am, they’re expired. There’s no way I can accept them. The computer will reject their codes.”

Customer: “You could’ve told me that ten minutes ago!” *storms out of the store, leaving behind her items*

Manager: *pops his head out of his office* “Uh… what just happened?”

Me: “It’s a Monday morning. That’s what happened. Only seven more hours to go…”

Coupon And On And On, Part 3
Coupon And On And On, Part 2
Coupon And On And On


Being Nice Is Free

| Jeffersonville, IN, USA | At The Checkout, Bad Behavior, Food & Drink

(I’m unfortunately with the person who is causing this scene. The fast food place is closed on the inside due to a leak of some sort in the lobby, so only the drive-thru is open. It’s the busy time of day and the line is very long but I have no problem waiting. I’m in the car with my step-dad, who is one of those entitled people, and regardless of where he goes thinks he deserves something free. When we finally get up to the window, he starts shouting at the poor lady.)

Step-Dad: “I should get something for free for you making me wait so long. What are you going to give me for free? Give me a Diet [Soda]. I’ll take that for no charge since you made me wait so long.”

Employee: “You know, sir, I have no problem with that at all if you could just ask nicely instead of saying that you ‘should’ get something for free. I apologize for the wait; our lobby is closed, we are doing the best we can, and we are also currently understaffed.”

Step-Dad: “I don’t care! You made me wait! So I SHOULD get something for free, and it’s not my problem you are understaffed; hire more people!”

Employee: “Again I apologize. I will get you a drink for no charge, but if you were nicer with the way you treat people, it would go a lot further for you.”

(I really was hoping she would give him nothing, and just dump the soda on him because he didn’t deserve it and I could tell she was already stressed out, I assume, from people all day yelling just about the same thing. I called and asked to speak with her as soon as I got home and apologized to her for his behavior and that she did nothing to deserve that. She was very sweet and said the two cars ahead of us had been the same way, and many other people throughout the day. The car ahead of us had even thrown something at her. I told her to keep up the excellent work they were doing and try to stay positive, and that I thought she should have just thrown the soda at him, so we had a good laugh about that. I wish I could have offered her more than an apology for him, but it was the best I could do. I just hope it somehow helped to keep her day from being ruined by him, and other people like him, because she, or anyone in her position, doesn’t deserve to be treated that way.)


Arts And Crafty

| FL, USA | At The Checkout, Criminal & Illegal, Liars & Scammers

(I’m the closing manager for a craft store and one of my cashiers calls me to the front. A woman with a baby carriage is attempting to return a collection of high-priced marker sets without a receipt or the original card. I’ve seen this enough to know that she’s stolen these sets and wants the cash. I explain the store policy and refuse most of the return, only allowing about $42. Without a security team, there’s not much else I can do. After following her around the store for about three hours, she comes up to the till.)

Me: “Oh, did you find everything you need? Oops, there’s a marker set on the bottom of the carriage. Let me get that for you.”

Customer: “Oh, thank you! I forgot I put it down there.”

Me: “Of course! Looks like some items slipped under this bag. Let me get this out of the way so you can grab the other items.”

(She purchased about a third of the items, $42 worth, from the carriage and swiftly left the store. The remainder, including what I pulled from under the carriage? About 250 dollars worth of various marker sets and small items. Huh. Glad for the confirmation about that earlier return! I personally thanked all my employees and passed along a note to the head manager.)


The Gift Card That Keeps On Giving, Part 3

| USA | At The Checkout, Crazy Requests, Hotels & Lodging

Customer: *on phone* “Say, can we pay with a gift card?”

(I recall that people have paid with a gift card.)

Me: “As long as when I swipe it, it goes through.”

Customer: “Great!”

(Hours later…)

Customer: “Hi! Here’s my card!”

(I swipe it and it says declined.)

Me: “I’m sorry, but it was declined. You’ll have to pay it another way.”

Customer: “But you said that I could use it!”

Me: “If it goes through, I said.”

Customer: “Details, schmetails…”

The Gift Card That Keeps Giving, Part 2
The Gift Card That Keeps Giving


Razor Sharp Rewards

| CA, USA | At The Checkout, Wild & Unruly

(I work at an auto parts store. Just like any retail store, we get plenty of returns a day, and it’s our job to verify that the return is valid and make sure parts are not used. A customer comes in to return a roll of window tint.)

Customer: “Hi, I would like to make this return. I didn’t need it after all.”

Me: “Okay, I’ll be happy to do that.” *starts opening package to make sure everything is there*

Customer: “Oh, don’t worry. I didn’t open it.”

Me: “Sorry, sir, just have to make sure.”

(While checking I noticed that the roll has already been cut and there is less than half left over.)

Me: “Sorry, sir, I won’t be able to do this return. The product has been used.”

Customer: “What do you mean? It’s complete!”

Me: *walk over to the aisle to get new package for comparison* “You see, sir, it’s less than half.”

Customer: “Fine, throw it away! I’m never coming here again. At [Other Main Auto Parts Store], they always return what I buy! Better yet!” *starts ripping apart the roll of tint, trying to cause a scene*

Me: “Here, sir, I have a razor you can use. It will probably be easier to cut it with.”

Customer: *takes razor angrily and cuts the roll* “And here’s your rewards card! I won’t need it since I’m never coming here again!” *starts to try to tear the card apart*

Me: “Here, you can still use the razor!”

(The customer stormed out angrily! Funny thing was, a few months later, he came back to the store to buy something. When he was paying I asked for his rewards card and he said he threw it away because last time some girl didn’t wanna do his return! He said he’s sure she got fired because he hasn’t seen her since!  I guess he didn’t recognize me.)

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