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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!

Code Red

| USA | At The Checkout, Extra Stupid, Technology

(A customer comes in with his son to purchase Xbox currency. At our store, whenever someone buys any DLC (downloadable codes) a screen pops up on our pin-pad that lets the customer know they cannot return DLC once it’s purchased and to verify that it’s the correct item for the correct system. We also voice what the pad says, to save the customer time from reading it. The customer must hit accept before we can continue the purchase.)

Me: “Okay! All that’s left is to hit accept on the pad, which is just letting you know once you purchase this item, you can’t return it.”

Customer: “But I haven’t swiped my debit card yet…”

Me: *confused* “No, this is for the currency that you are buying. We have a policy where you can’t return it since it’s just a code, and we just need you to accept that you understand that.”

Customer: “But… I haven’t swiped my debit card yet.”

(His tone of voice by this point makes it sound like he thinks I’m dumb and don’t understand what he’s saying.)

Me: “Right, we haven’t gotten that far yet. Before you can pay for it, you need to accept this message here, as I said.”

(He continued to tell me the same thing, until his son chimed in and told him what he needed to do. We were finally able to finalize the transactions. The kicker? He came back the next day trying to return the code saying it wasn’t working. After my manager called our customer service number, who told us the code had been redeemed, the son told his dad that they had already redeemed the code. The father looked pissed and left in a huff.)

Not Giving The Staff Enough Credit

| IL, USA | At The Checkout, Bad Behavior, Money

(I work at a clothing store, we have a pinpad where customers can swipe their cards but we have to swipe the card at the register. And we have to ask if it’s credit or debit, and if it’s credit we need to ask to see the customer’s ID.)

Me: “Is that credit or debit?”

Customer: *says as if I don’t understand English* “This is a… credit… card. It’s American Express.”

Can’t Put A Price On A Priceless Reaction

| OR, USA | At The Checkout, Money

(I work in a small store, all of our pricing is done with pricing guns that print stickers to the product. We have six+ different pricers, and occasionally mistakes are made, the same item ends up with two different prices, etc;)

Customer: “Look! These are the same thing, one is $1.25, one is $1.50! Why is that!?”

Me: “Oh, I’m sorry. Sometimes things get mis-marked by mistake. But the correct price is $1.25.”

Customer: “I don’t want any, just wanted to know WHY they were different!”

Manager: “Well we have several different pricers. Sometimes they just go off of memory or forget the latest update. I’m sorry for any confusion.”

Customer: “Ah, thank you! I think some of them need to go back to kindergarten, yeah?” *laughing, he gestures towards me*

Manager: *without laughing, stares, unmoving at the customer…*

Customer: *slowly stops laughing, gets uncomfortable and leaves*

Cancel My Previous Statement

| USA | At The Checkout, Technology

(I work at a well-known retail store. We work with pin-pads for debit and credit. I like to walk people through each step, because if you select the wrong thing you’ll have to slide the card again and this annoys customers.)

Customer: *swipes card*

Me: “Now if you could select debit or credit.”

Customer: *selects debit*

Me: “Now then—”

Customer: “EXCUSE ME! I’M NOT STUPID! I don’t need you to walk me through this. I know how to do it!”

Me: “Oh, I’m sorry; I didn’t mean—”

Customer: “I use my card all the time. I think I KNOW HOW TO USE A PIN-PAD!”

(I decide to let it go. I don’t talk again until I look at the screen.)

Me: “Um, excuse me, ma’am—”

Customer: “WHAT!”

Me: “Did you find something wrong with the price?”

Customer: “No. Why?”

Me: “Because you just cancelled the entire transaction.”

Lack Of Register Does Not Register, Part 6

| CA, USA | At The Checkout, Crazy Requests, Time

(At my store, the place you punch in is at the registers. However, the storage for the employee’s items is in the back. You need to go to the back to put your items in before punching in. I have just clocked in and am going up to my supervisor to see what register I’m on and what duties I have. Before I get to her, I’m stopped by a customer.)

Customer: “Are you an employee?”

Me: “Yes.”

Customer: “Why aren’t you at a register?”

Me: “I just clocked in two seconds ago. I’m going to—”

Customer: “Well, I saw you walking past. Why weren’t you on the register?”

Me: “I’m sorry. It’s store policy for the employees to put their things in the back before clocking in.”

Customer: “Have you seen this line? I want your manager. There need to be more employees on the register. What I want to know is why you aren’t on a register now.”

Me: “Because I’m busy talking to you.”

(In the time it took for her to complain, I could have gotten on my register and checked her out.)

Related:
Lack of Register Does Not Register, Part 5
Lack of Register Does Not Register, Part 4
Lack of Register Does Not Register, Part 3

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