Walk A Mile In The Wrong Shoes

, , , | Right | June 21, 2018

(I’m working the returns desk for a well-known retail chain. We have a strict return policy of 30 days, but we will sometimes bend the rules a bit if a customer is a bit outside the window. I am doing a return for an older female customer who is returning two separate orders.)

Me: “Okay, ma’am, since it’s two transactions, I’ll have to do them separately; is that all right?”

Customer: “Yes, that’s okay. Do this one first; it’s older.”

Me: *thinking it’s a few weeks out* “Okay. Let me look at the receipt.”

(I see her receipt is missing the barcode and receipt ID number. Since the customer paid cash, I offer to look up the receipt with her store rewards card, which she agrees to.)

Me: “Hmm, it can’t find your item.”

(I glance at the receipt again and look at the date; the item was purchased over three years ago. Her other receipt was for the previous week.)

Me: “Um, ma’am, I cannot return this item, as it is way outside our return date window.”

Customer: “Oh, well, can’t you just bend the rules? Just this once?”

Me: “If it were a matter of a few days, I might be able to, but this item was purchased three years ago. I cannot take it back.”

Customer: “How about for store credit?”

Me: “I’m sorry, ma’am, but this rule is from our corporate office, and I cannot do any sort of refund or exchange, even for store credit.”

Customer: “But I never used it!”

Me: “I understand, but that is the rule. The computer won’t even find your purchase outside of the return date window. I can do your other return, as it is still in date, but not this one.”

Customer: “But I never used it! Just give me store credit!”

Me: “Again, ma’am, I cannot give you any refund or exchange for this—”

Customer: “BUT I NEVER USED IT! THIS IS RIDICULOUS! I can’t wear these shoes; they don’t fit!”

(The man behind her in line has had enough.)

Customer #2: *mumbling* “And it took you three years to figure that out?”

([Customer] immediately shuts up and lets me do her other return. She is still screaming about “never using” her item as she leaves. I turn to help the next customer.)

Customer #2: “Are people really that stupid?”

Me: “I wish I could say that was a first, sir.”

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