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Pressed For Cash

, , , , , | Right | May 20, 2022

It’s 2020, and in the midst of the first lockdown. In order to keep us – and our customers – safe, our managers have decided to implement a rule which means we cannot take cash. The safe in the office is empty. We have no money in our till drawers. We cannot take it at all. There are signs all around the shop stating this (several on the front windows, two on the front doors, one on the hand sanitiser, on the fridge doors – basically everywhere). Still, we get customers who think they are an exception. With this, being berated for mask laws that aren’t our choice, and trying desperately to calm panic buyers who want a dozen packs of toilet rolls, we are fed up.

I am serving a line of people when a man comes to my till, scans through the shopping, and then tries to hand me a £20 note.

Me: “I’m very sorry, but we’re not accepting cash at the moment.”

Customer: “What?!”

Me: “We cannot accept cash. You can pay by card, or if you don’t have it on you I can pause the transaction and keep your shopping to the side while you get it.”

Customer: “Just take the money!”

Me: “I’m sorry, but we have no change to give you; we have no cash anywhere on the premises.”

Customer: “This is ridiculous and illegal! This whole rule is just a f****** disgrace and you should be ashamed of yourself! Just take the f****** cash and do your job!”

At this point, a supervisor who is standing nearby steps up beside me.

Supervisor: “I won’t tolerate you talking to anyone like that. We have no change in the drawers or anywhere in the shop. It is the manager’s rule, so either pay by card or just get out.”

The man silently paid by card and left, and I was honestly shocked. My supervisor was a friendly, fairly quiet guy who I had never heard talk back to anyone. It was just a sign of how fed up we all were with being verbally abused by customers. I quit retail not long after that. The icing on the cake was hearing how some of my younger colleagues, not long out of high school, had to be picked up from work after their night shift because a customer made them feel too afraid to walk home.

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What is the absolute most stupid thing you’ve heard a customer say?

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