The Couponator 13: Coupons Of Purchases Past

, , , , , | Right | March 12, 2019

(Recently our registers started printing out coupons and promotions along with the receipts. Once a customer hits a certain dollar amount, they get an extra coupon. We are currently giving a coupon for 50% off a regular-priced item for customers spending over $20. We are in the middle of the expiration dates listed on the coupon, so it is “live” and can be used immediately. However, the fine print specifically states that it cannot be used on a previous purchase. I’ve had several people want to immediately return what they just purchased to and then repurchase with the coupon they just received, but this transaction goes above and beyond. A woman approaches the register with a store bag full of yarn. Seeing all of the signs of a return, I greet her:)

Me: “Are you making a return today?”

Customer: “Yes, I purchased these yesterday and I got a coupon for half off, so I wanted to apply it to my purchase.”

Me: “I’m sorry, those coupons are good for future purchases and cannot be used on previous purchases.”

Customer: “Well, I didn’t have the coupon until I bought the yarn. It printed with the receipt, so I couldn’t have used it with my purchase!”

(I’m thinking, “EXACTLY!” but lately corporate has been very pro-customer and we have basically been told to never say no and to make the customer happy no matter what. So, even though it is against policy, I know that once I ask my manager, I’ll be told to go ahead and break it, return the item, and then apply the coupon. Still, I have to do a token refusal so the customer feels like they are getting their way.)

Me: “Well, let me see your receipt and I’ll ask my manager what we can do.”

Customer: “I actually don’t have my receipt; can’t you just look it up? I bought it yesterday, and my name is [Customer].”

Me: “Ma’am, I have no way of looking up a transaction by a customer’s name; we simply don’t take that information. And I wouldn’t be able to process a return without a receipt and do what you’re asking; all returns without receipt are automatically priced at the lowest price it could have been purchased at in the past 90 days, which would likely be half-off, so you would end up not getting any money back by repurchasing and applying a half-off coupon. It would zero out.”

Customer: “I just don’t understand why you can’t just give me the difference.”

Me: “Ma’am, if you show me your coupon I can show you what the conditions of the coupon are.”

Customer: “Well, I don’t have the coupon with me; it printed with the receipt, so it’s wherever that is!”

Me: “I want to make sure I understand what you’re asking. You want me to return an item you purchased, to apply a coupon you only got because you purchased the item, and you want me to do this without a receipt showing the purchase or the coupon you want me to apply?”

Customer: “Yes! That’s not hard, is it?”

Related:
The Couponator 12: The Special Competition
The Couponator 11: Barcode Of Duty
The Couponator 10: Expiration Day

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