Category: Money

Because… Math

| Toronto, ON, Canada | At The Checkout, Math & Science, Money

(The prices of the items are posted in huge numbers on the front of the display counter, impossible to miss. Our boneless chicken breasts are usually quite large, a fact which I always point out to people who are not regular customers.)

Customer: “Can I have some boneless breasts?”

Me: “Sure thing! They’re quite large, about a pound each. How many would you like?”

(The breasts are $5.99/lb, I’m trying to prevent sticker shock.)

Customer: “I’ll take six.”

Me: *bags and weighs six chicken breasts* “Okay, it comes to $36.”

Customer: “What?! Why is it so much?”

Me: “Because six times six is thirty-six.”

Exempt From Reality

| CT, USA | Bad Behavior, Crazy Requests, Money

(I work at a store that has tax-exempt status, and we welcome people to use theirs if their business is as well. We do require an actual copy of the permit as proof, though.)

Me: “All right, the total is $21.27.”

Customer: “$20. I have tax-exempt.”

(Customer hands me a piece of cardboard with the numbers written on it.)

Me: “Sir, I can’t accept this.”

Customer: “Why not?”

Me: “Our finance department requires that we submit a copy of the actual permit with the receipt.”

Customer: “Well, it’s at my store!”

Me: “I’m sorry, there’s nothing I can do.”

Customer: “You have to keep yours here. How do you people do it?”

Me: “We make a copy of it.”

Customer: “Well… [Similar Store] accepts this!”

Me: “Every store is run differently. We need an actual copy.”

Customer: “Whatever. Just give me my change. I’ll be back tomorrow with a copy and you can give me my $1.27 back.”

Me: “Uh… I can’t do that.”

Customer: “Why not?”

Me: “Because me just handing you money from the register is illegal.”

Customer: “I’ll be back tomorrow for my money.”

(The manager walks up after he leaves.)

Manager: “You handled that well.”

Me: “What do you want to do if he comes back?”

Manager: “If he actually shows up, I’ll give it to him… all in pennies.”

(The customer never came back.)

E(B)T Phone Home

| USA | At The Checkout, Money

(We have a department that handles people on the Lifeline program, which gives a free phone and minutes to low-income people. Normally I handle the paid customers, but on occasion the free phone people end up in my queue. Shenanigans invariably ensue.)

Me: “Thank you for calling [Company]. How can I help you?”

Customer: “I want to know if my [Store] Food Card can be used to pay for minutes?”

Me: “Pardon me, your what kind of card?”

Customer: “My [Store] FOOD Card. You know, you get it from the government to pay for food.”

Me: “Oh. Do you mean an EBT card?”

Customer: “Yeah!  My EBT card! I just scan it at [Store] and it pays for my food. Can I get a plan with it?”

Me: “Um, no, sir.”

Customer: “Well, WHY NOT?! It’s a government phone. It’s a government card. Now, you let me pay for my plan!”

Me: “I’m sorry, sir, but I can’t. The EBT program is only for food and other edible products, not for telephone plans.”

Customer: “Well, just run it through and see. I bet it takes it.”

Me: “No sir, I can’t do that. Do you have an airtime card, a credit, or debit card? I can use those.”

Customer: “Well, this EBT is a card! Take it!”

Independent From Your Day

| Vancouver, BC, Canada | Canada, Holidays, Money

(Vancouver sees a lot of American tourists. Just like American businesses, we are concerned about counterfeit bills, so typically $50 and $100, US or Canadian, are rarely accepted and there are signs to this effect. This story takes place on a July 4. Exchange rates [generally quite unfavorable] are posted in case they use USD.)

Box Office Box Office Attendant: “Your total is $25 for 2 tickets.”

Customer: “Can you break this $100(USD)?”

Box Office Attendant: “I’m sorry; sir, but we cannot accept bills of that denomination. Do you have anything smaller?”

Customer: “No, and no one takes them. What can I do?”

Box Office Attendant: “You could take it to a bank and exchange it for Canadian.”

Customer: “How? Banks are closed today.”

Box Office Attendant: “Why would they be closed?”

Customer: “It’s a holiday!”

Box Office Attendant: “July 4th is not a holiday in Canada, sir. Today is a regular weekday.”

Customer: “I can’t believe you don’t celebrate Independence Day! Why don’t you?”

Box Office Attendant: “That’s your holiday; we have Canada Day on July 1. Banks are closed that day.”

Customer: “It would be lot easier if you followed our holidays.”

Box Office Attendant: “We’ll keep that in mind. Perhaps you have a credit card?”

Totally Checked Out

| GA, USA | Crazy Requests, Money

(I am working on the customer service desk; we cash payroll and tax return type checks. The phone rings.)

Me: “Customer service, how may I help you?”

Customer: “Yeah, I just got my state tax refund check. How much do y’all charge to cash checks?”

Me: “It’s $3 up to $1,000; after that it’s $6.”

Customer: “Oh, well, see, my check is only $4… How much do you charge for that?”

Me: “It’s still a $3 fee. I’m sorry.”

Customer: “Can I give you the $3 in cash, so it doesn’t come out of my check?”

Me: “Uh… it’s… gonna automatically take it out. You’re probably going to be better off finding a bank to cash it.”

Customer: *huff* “Fine.”

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