Cash Back Coupon Attack

, , , , , | Right | May 7, 2018

(A cashier comes up to me at the service desk with a suspended order.)

Cashier: “I’m sorry. I talked to our coordinator about it, but I just can’t handle this anymore. The customer wants to get cash back on a coupon, and we can’t do that. I’m sorry.”

Customer: *furiously* “You know about that sale last week right? With the iPads? And how you got this coupon?”

(The customer waves the coupon around so I can hardly read it. I can make out that it was $135 off their next purchase. That means you have to make a purchase of over $135 in order to use it, since it does not give cash back.)

Me: “I’m sorry; I’m not familiar with that.”

Customer: *more angry* “What do you mean, you’re not?! How do you not know what sales are going on in your own store?!”

Me: “Ah, well… I guess there’s just so many that’d it’d be impossible to remember all of them.”

Customer: “Well! It never stated anywhere in the paper that you couldn’t get cash back on this coupon, so it’s very misleading!”

Me: “Unfortunately, you can’t get cash back on those kinds of coupons. You have to spend over $135 in order to use it.”

Customer: “That’s not fair! Ask your manager, then!”

Me: “Okay.” *calls manager* “So, I have a customer here who wants to get cash back for a $135-off coupon on a $38 transaction.”

Manager: “Yeah, we don’t do that. We’ve never done that. Tell them no.”

Me: “I’m sorry. My manager said that we cannot do that.”

Customer: “Get him up here! I need to speak with him!”

Me: “All right.”

(I call the manager back. While I’m calling him up, the woman mutters “bring it on”.

Me: “Hey, she wants to speak with you.”

Manager: “Okay, I’ll be right there.”

(The manager arrives.)

Customer: “Are you the manager?!”

Manager: “Yes, I am. Well, of this department.”

Customer: “You see, I want to use this on my order, but it won’t give me cash back, and that is very misleading, since it said nowhere in the paper that I couldn’t! You guys are just trying to scam me! I spend so much money here. I bet you don’t even make how much I spend here!”

Manager: “We have never given money back on a coupon.”

Customer: “That’s not true! I’ve done it before!”

Manager: “Ma’am, I’ve been here over 37 years. We have never given money back on a coupon. You have to spend over that in order to use it. That is just how it works.”

Customer: “Get me your manager! This is absolutely ridiculous! I’m going to tell all my friends about this. And they were loyal shoppers, too!”

(My manager calls up the store director in charge. He explains to her the situation, and she also refuses to let the woman get cash back.)

Manager: “She said that we cannot do that.”

Customer: “Get her up here! I want to talk to her personally!”

Manager: *calls her back again* “She said she’s going to be a few minutes, but she’ll be here.”

Customer: “Whatever. As long as I can talk to her.”

(A good five or more minutes pass until she is able to make it up front. I see the store director talking with my manager and coordinator off to the side before she confronts the woman.)

Customer: “Are you the store director?!”

Store Director: “Not the main one, but I’m in charge right now, yes.”

(The customer explains her situation again, shouting about how the store is trying to rip her off.)

Store Director: “I’m sorry, but we cannot do that. I can take down your name and number, and you can talk with the main store director on Monday.”

Customer: “No. I want this done now! I live in [City I’ve never even heard of]. And this is just too far of a drive!”

Store Director: “We cannot, nor have we ever before done cash back on a coupon.”

Customer: “This is just asinine! I need to pay for my stuff, then!”

(She was brought over to an empty lane, and the cashier began to re-ring her order. The woman pulled out her phone and began to record the cashier, the service desk, and the managers, while screaming and degrading the cashier. I ended up getting caught on her film so, I shot her the dirtiest look I could give. I called my manager to let him know that she was filming this, and he said that she most likely wouldn’t do anything with it. Later, he told me that he wished he’d known sooner so he could have flipped her off.)

Does Not Vouch For The Voucher

, , , , , | Working | May 1, 2018

(A few weeks ago, I received vouchers that can be used for ANY restaurants in a certain shopping mall. The vouchers have the mall’s official stamp, issue date, expiration date, and a seal, so it’s not a fraud. One day, I decide to use it in one of the restaurants.)

Cashier: “May I have your order?”

Me: *orders*

Cashier: “That will be [amount].”

Me: *pays using vouchers*

Cashier: “I’m sorry. We don’t accept that voucher.”

Me: “Look at the voucher first. It said that this voucher can be used at all the restaurants in this shopping mall.”

Cashier: “Sorry, but we don’t participate. See? Our restaurant name was not listed in the voucher.”

Me: “That’s because it’s stated clearly in the voucher that it can be used for all restaurants in this shopping mall! See? It even has the official stamp and seal of this shopping mall.”

Cashier: “Yeah, but—”

(She then tries to find any fault in my voucher.)

Cashier: “Ah, see? This voucher has expired.”

Me: “Uh, that’s the issue date! The expiration date is printed next to it, and it’s still good for three more months.”

Cashier: “Uh…”

(She then tries to read the terms and condition to find another fault. When she can’t find one, she calls for her shift leader.)

Shift Leader: “Hi, sir. I’m sorry, but we don’t accept that voucher.”

(I repeat the explanation above one more time to the shift leader, once again pointing out that this voucher was officially issued by the shopping mall and that it has an official stamp and seal. Finally, after several minutes arguing back and forth…)

Shift Leader: “Okay, sir, if you can wait, I’ll call the shopping mall first.”

(I wait while the shift leader takes the telephone and calls the shopping mall manager. I don’t hear the conversation, but I hear the shift leader asking him about how to redeem the voucher. At that moment, I know that I am right and the voucher can be used. Finally, he finishes his phone call.)

Shift Leader: “Our apology for the inconvenience, sir. We were not informed by either our own management or the shopping mall management about this voucher. But yeah, we can accept the voucher.”

Me: “Finally!”

(They finally accept the voucher. The cashier, however, still tries to make it difficult by complaining that she doesn’t know how to handle the voucher. Thankfully, the shift leader is still there and tells her how to handle it. After the payment process is finished, I wait for the food. But suddenly, the cashier bursts out:)

Cashier: “JUST SIT DOWN! THE FOOD WILL BE DELIVERED TO YOU! YOU’RE BLOCKING THE OTHER CUSTOMERS!”

(I could no longer hold my anger, and I began complaining furiously to that shift leader! The shift leader could only apologize over and over again, but the cashier just stood there in her station refusing to even look at us. I don’t think I will come back to this restaurant anymore, free voucher or not. It’s a shame, though; the food is actually good.)

20% Discount, 100% Understanding

, , , , | Right | April 25, 2018

(This grocery store is running a small promotion in which you can get a flyer from a newspaper with sale stickers — 20%, 10%, and 5% off — and you are free to apply them to anything you buy. The young woman in front of me has apparently collected a few of these flyers and covered her whole weekly shop in the stickers.)

Cashier: “I’m sorry, ma’am, but there’s been a policy change; we’re only allowed one 20% sticker per transaction, five 10% stickers, and as many 5% stickers as you want.”

Woman: “Oh, God. I think most of this is 20% and 10%. Let’s sort through it.”

(The woman and cashier try to figure out how to best scan all the items with the stickers while I’m unloading my cart.)

Woman: “Would it be all right to just break it all up into separate transactions for each 20% sticker I have, and then add as many 10% as we can?”

Cashier: “Sure, we could do that.”

(Figuring this out takes a while, and adding to it, the woman pays with a credit card, which means an entire new receipt to sign every time.)

Cashier: *to me* “I’m sorry for the wait. I can call to open another line if you want.”

Me: “It’s fine. There’s no one behind me, and I’ve got all the time in the world today.”

Woman: *while paying for her last transaction* “I’m so sorry, really, but I don’t think I could’ve afforded all this without the reductions.”

Me: “Trust me, I understand. You’re buying diapers, baby food, and staple food items. It’d be ridiculous not to use as many coupons as you can to stock up! I would’ve done just the same. And as I said, I’ve got time to wait today, so I don’t mind.”

Woman: “Thank you for understanding! Actually, I still have one 10% sticker and a few 5% left. Would you like them?”

Me: “You bet I do!”

(The cashier had a good laugh about it and was obviously glad I didn’t get angry, and I got a few of my more pricey items reduced. I considered it a win for all of us.)

The Couponator 5: Online Decline

, , , , | Right | April 21, 2018

(A woman comes up to my register to pay for her items.)

Me: “Hi, is that all for you today?”

Customer: “Yes. I have a $5 coupon on my phone; I just need to pull it up.”

Me: “Okay, great, no problem.”

(I see her struggle to load the page; after a few moments she shows me a blank screen.)

Customer: “It’s not loading, but it’s right here.”

Me: “I’m sorry. Since that’s just a blank page and there’s no barcode or sku number, there’s no way I can actually put the coupon into the system.”

Customer: “There has to be a way you can honour it! Can I speak to a manager?”

Me: “She’s not in right now; it’s just me. But even if she was, there’s no way our system will let us use the coupon since we can’t actually see it.”

(I spend a few more minutes trying to help her get the page to load. After a moment, I realize she’s connected to a Wi-Fi hotspot several blocks away.)

Me: “Do you have LTE?”

Customer: *blank stare*

Me: “Do you have mobile Internet on your smartphone? If you do, you’ll be able to connect to the Internet, as we don’t have Wi-Fi here.”

Customer: “I don’t have that.”

Me: “Okay, then, I’m sorry. It’s not possible for me to take your coupon today.”

Customer: “That’s ridiculous! What good is a coupon if I can’t even use it?!”

Me: “I’m sorry, ma’am. Next time be sure to print the coupon, or take a screenshot next time you are connected to the Internet.”

Customer: “This isn’t fair! You should be able to honour it!”

Me: “It’s not our fault that you don’t have Internet, ma’am. I’m sorry that you feel inconvenienced.”

(I ring up her purchase.)

Me: “Thank you. Have a nice day.”

Customer: *mumbles incoherently, snatches her bag, and storms off*

Related:
The Couponator 4: Deadly Discounts
The Couponator 3: Rise Of The Coupons

Politeness Saves From Hair-Raising Situations

, , , , , , | Working | April 13, 2018

I got a very nice coupon emailed to me from a beauty supply store that I like to visit. The location by my house has a salon, and I intended to get a haircut there after my next paycheck came through. Unfortunately, the email link for printing the coupon didn’t work by the time I was really ready to use it, so I called up their customer service line to see what had happened, figuring it was either my browser being buggy or the link having expired.

As protocol, I was as polite and clear about my issue as I could be with the woman I ended up talking to, and we both ended up agreeing that the link breaking was very odd. It took a couple of check-ins with a supervisor, but she managed to confirm my details and that the coupon had indeed been sent to me. For all my waiting, I got an e-gift certificate matching the dollar amount of the coupon.

It hit me afterwards that she might have thought I was lying about having gotten the coupon in the first place, but politeness seems to get you everywhere with people on the other side of the phone.

My hair thanks you, customer service lady!

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