Friday, October 10, 2008

The customer is always... annoyingly right!

I was so angry, but I stood my ground and I won!

Maybe I had something to prove after Wednesday's frustrating photo ID defeat, but I've always said that everyone should devote some time towards serving the general public at some time in their lives. I'm giving the Target checkout guy the full benefit of my doubt: maybe he's new and he didn't know about "the customer is always right" adage, or maybe he was on a toilet break when that bit got mentioned during training.

I left for the city yesterday in short sleeves. It was a gorgeous, sunny, spring day - but, in the concrete and steel canyons of our CBD, it was a little breezy, and I began to realise I was going to need to buy myself something light, yet long-sleeved, for returning home.

Finding everything else I'd been looking for (I had one purchase which had taken me to Dymocks' Broadway Centre shopping centre, on the site of the old Grace Bros department store. It was quite a nostalgic walk, past buildings that were removed (no more Tooth & Co brewery), or being removed (no more St Barnabus's church), since my days at teachers' college in Ultimo in the late 70s).

I found a light jacket I wanted to buy. It was a great price, $29.88, marked down to $19.88. But a sign said, "Buy any second item and get the second one for a further 50% off." The second jacket I found had a $29.86 price tag, with a markdown sticker of $15.86. Being of average size, I rarely find "el cheapo" clothing bargains in my size!

My problem was that that the first item rang up at its original price, and I had to prompt the guy to check the price, and then the second jacket would only scan at its high price.

"This isn't part of the sale," he said.

Huh? Even if the price tag was wrong, every item in the store was part of the sale; the sign said so. And then he elaborated, "A customer has changed the sticker from another item."

Again, and louder?: "Huh?"

Was he saying that I changed the ticket? Isn't there some rule about wrongly priced items, and similiarly, about sales signs that are incorrect?

The checkout guy was not budging so I told him he could keep the lot, including the $35 DVD I had on the counter, too. Then I had a second thought. There was another identical jacket, although of smaller size, back on the rack - and would he believe me if it had the same prices marked on it? Off I stormed, returning with a victorious grin.

Suddenly, it was no problem for him to adjust manually the price tags at the computerised cash register. I got 50% off the second jacket's reduced price, and a further 50% of the remaining amount as an apology.

Now that's bargain shopping! I'm glad I didn't have to stick by my guns and walk out jacketless (and DVDless). It was getting chilly out there on Broadway.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Good for you for sticking to your guns! I see stuff like this happening a lot lately. It annoys the crap out of me.

On Monday I went to buy half a BBQ chicken from the deli at Woolies. The guy walked over to the chickens looked at them, came back and said, "Sorry we only have quarters or whole chickens left." I couldn't believe it. When I worked in the deli at Woolies and a customer wanted half a chicken, you took one and cut it in half. It's your job to do that. Since I had a very tired toddler with me I decided not to stand there and tell him what his job was. I just left and bought my chicken elsewhere.