“Help! I’m tired of being treated rudely!”

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Last night, I got an email from a reader who is feeling some frustration. I know that I have readers here who can relate to her story, and so I asked her if I could share a portion of her email with you today for advice and encouragement.

Here’s Alicia: 

…recently when I have done shopping with coupons at certain stores, following all the rules, being polite, etc…  I have seen that I am running into more and more rude and un-helpful cashiers, and sadly to say managers.  At first I thought that this was all in my head, so I brought my husband along to watch the madness and see if I was just making it up.  We went to Rite Aid and the lady was very rude and short with me after I handed her my coupons.  Then we went to the Safeway on Pearl by my apartment and when doing the frosted flakes free milk deal (using the two print out coupons), they would not scan so the gal asked for the manager to come by to approve it.  She did, and I was thankful to both of them, but as I left the store the manager was literally glaring at me.  Again, I thought this was all in my head, but my husband was there to witness both of these situations and even he was appalled at this behavior.

Needless to say I just wanted to break down and cry after I left both stores.  I told my husband that this is just ridiculous and that I almost felt like quitting my couponing because I was tired of the ridicule that I get when I shop.  They make me feel like I am stealing when really I feel that if they did not want me to use coupons then they would not be in the papers.  I never do anything that is immoral or inappropriate when I coupon and I am by the book to try and save myself from any problems, but it seems to be getting worse.  Do you ever run into this? What would you do if you were in my situation?

Sorry this is so long winded, but I wasn’t sure where to turn.  I don’t want to give up on this because I truly do love to coupon.

Couponers, what thoughts to you have for Alicia?


Comments

  1. Shauna says

    I recently read the book, How to Win Friends and Influence People, by Dale Carnegie (its 70 years old but still oh so relevant)! I’m not telling your to read it but this book is where I am going to pull my advice from. I would take the high road. Keep doing as your doing and be as friendly as you possibly can. If it persists then I would make sure to take down the names of the cashier and the manager that are giving you trouble and I would mail them a thank you note. I would explain your feelings in this note and I would also thank them for being so gracious in taking your coupons and helping you to save money for you and your family. Maybe, they don’t have families, maybe they have never “couponed” and this would, hopefully give them a refreshing perspective on who a couponer is and hopefully make them have a more positive attitude towards you and others who come into their store. Maybe all this sounds silly but I have sent thank you cards to people who have been rude to me on many occasions and 9 times out of 10 it has improved the situation. While they are reading the card they don’t have anyone to argue with or be rude to so they can read it and absorb it and if they are decent human beings they will try to relate and adjust their attitudes. If this doesn’t work, well hon sorry to say this but take your business elsewhere! Have a great day

  2. Kim says

    Hold your chin up! There are miserable people in the world and you seem to be encountering them! Bottom line, it is your money, not theirs. You are absolutely correct in saying that if the manufactures didn’t want you to use coupons they wouldn’t print them. They store get their money back and then some. Keep your smile on, tell them to have a great day and leave the store knowing that you saved money for your family, and family is what matters most in life!

  3. Amy says

    I keep thinking that is going to happen everytime I go
    Couponing, but it has been quite the opposite. I go into the stores with my binder, when I am unsure where something is at I ask for help, when I check out, I apologize for the extra work it will be because of my coupons, (and I act like I am new to it, they are more helpful). So far, so good. Just remember tht you are doing this for your family, and that is what counts! Kill them with kindness!

  4. Sara says

    Interesting you should mention Rite Aid, as that is a place I have encountered the same rude cashier when I use my coupons. After several weeks of just taking her comments about what a pain it is to ring in the coupons and how ridiculous some couponers tend to be I decided to make a comment of my own…. I asked her if she hated her jobs since she always seemed to be so perturbed to do it. I must have caught her completely by surprise because the look on her face was priceless. Strangely, I haven’t had a problem with her since then, in fact, she tries to start conversations about couponing with me while checking out. I too coupon by the book and see no reason for stores/cashiers to be rude.

  5. Jill says

    I would simply call for the main head manager of the store or call corporate offices and let them know. The stores get money for the coupons and its not like they are loosing money if nothing else they are gaining you as a customer and if they continue to treat you that way try and find another store(s) to shop at. There are coupons that come in the newspaper or mail that don’t always scan too. Maybe remind them if they treat you badly that you will take your business else where and let others know to do the same and if they start loosing customers they will have to make changes. Just keep being yourself and don’t let them bring you down and if you feel they are just glaring at you put them on the spot and ask them loud enough for others to hear but not too loud where people think your just whining and say I’m sorry is there a problem or do you have something to say or what is your problem with a customer using valid coupons.

  6. elizabeth says

    terrific advice Shauna! well said! Alicia, you just keep doing the right things, and be proud you are saving your family money in honest ways.

  7. tiff w says

    Aw Alicia, I know that feeling! I posted on FB about this under Angela’s thread that linked to this article too.

    I’ve couponed for a few years now and have never been treated badly before. I always thought it was because I was respectful, never demanding, and didn’t hold up lines by doing multiple transactions, etc. But lately Safeway (mostly Safeway and I’m a diehard loyal shopper – part of their VIP group, whatever that is – apparently spending a lot of money there), Target, Walmart, WINCO (winco has never been all that coupon friendly IMO to be honest and I knew and worked with them – lots of behind the scenes talk among the mangers, I witnessed lots of gripe-fests) and walgreens workers have been really “out of line” rude to me. I know that feeling when you leave, kind of feelings hurt, wanting to cry and muttering under your breath “how rude.” It’s awful and it’s uncalled for! OH and a couple of weeks ago I was treated like that at the Dollar Tree when I bought a couple of newspapers (TWO) as well. I actually contacted the main office at the Dollar Tree and got an apology from them but I really don’t want to walk in those doors again…

    You have my sympathies and a “I know how you feel” nod. It’s a shame that something and somebodies have caused cashiers to resent us.

    What to do about it? I have no idea – I guess just develop a thick skin, get names of those who are rude and not hesitating to contact the head offices to voice our disappointments.

    • Hal says

      Please note that Dollar Tree does not have any music playing. No music is the rule at Dollar Tree stores. The Dollar Tree CEO walked home with about 375 Million last year. Just so you know.

      • tiff w says

        I know! I remember when an employee announced that they were taking away their music because customers were complaining. I used to LOVE the music in Dollar Tree :)

        I believe you about how much the CEO made.

      • Candra says

        I know most people will be bummed about the no music policy, but I like it! I love shopping in stores that don’t have music (well, except Walmart, but I don’t like shopping there for other reasons…)- Target is my favorite for that very reason. I can shop in peace and concentrate without being distracted by music I don’t like being played too loud. I’m 21, by the way…lol NOT 60!

  8. Tahnee says

    I have had the same problems. Sometimes, like with Albertsons, I jut won’t shop there anymore. But I would call the corporate phone number and let them know. Keep your chin up and don’t lose your cool.

  9. DJ says

    I would NOT give up. I would continue to make my life easy by using coupons and not worry about making their shift difficult by having to scan in coupons. That is their job. This is what they get paid to do. Deal with it. Our job is to find the best deals out there for our families. Who cares who we upset while we are doing it the right way and abiding by the rules they have placed.

    I tend to profile my cashiers. I avoid the older ladies and grumpy looking ones. I tend to go to the younger females. I chat them up. I make comments like “That was a great deal on this…” etc. If I get the feel like they are cool, I will even give them a coupon for something and tell them to use it on xx to get it free. They get all excited and thank me. There is one lady who I refuse to go to at my local Neighborhood Wal-Mart she is just a miserable lady. I stood in a long line one day when she had nobody in hers and I was good with it. Then I explained to the cashier who’s line I was that the other lady was always grumpy and I refuse to go through her anymore. She laughed and tried to save me even more money!

    I hope this has helped. Always profile girl! Chat them up. And try not to let them get to you. You get someone who is glaring, wave and smile as you leave. This will deflate them real fast. lol

  10. Kim says

    I’m so sorry that you were near tears, Alicia! Their bad attitude is THEIR problem, don’t let it become yours! Unfortunately, there are plenty of people in the world who are just rude or maybe they were having a bad day. Maybe they had recently had unpleasant experiences with other couponers (after all, not everyone who uses coupons is polite and ethical). There are tons of things that could cause a rude reaction. None of that has anything to do with you.

    I’ve been pretty lucky. I coupon at the same stores regularly and have gotten to know the staff at the times I normally go. Even though we’re on friendly terms, I can often tell they when they are having a rough day or other customers are giving them grief. There are a few shelf-clearers who come in and are very rude to the staff. I try to give them an extra smile or make them laugh if they seem a little grouchy. After all, I know what it’s like to have a bad day at work!

    If people are outright rude, I would report it to customer service. There’s no excuse for that type of bad behavior. But the general grouchiness, I mostly just try to let it roll off my back. Someone else’s bad day doesn’t need to ruin mine.

  11. Jess says

    Go to the Albertson’s on Pearl. That’s where I do most of my shopping, and they are very coupon friendly. If you want, feel free to come shopping with me, I live just on the S. side of 6th Ave. Most important thing, BE NICE even when they aren’t. Kill them with kindness.

    • Brandi says

      The Albertson’s on Pearl has some of the friendliest cashiers! But even there, there are a few who I would not go to their line because I have had a bad experience with them.

  12. says

    Sorry this is happening to you, it looks like most if not all of us have been through this before. It would be nice if cashiers and management could properly educate themselves about this part of their job. Maybe the grumpy ones would have a happier time if they actually knew what they were doing. There is one lady at Albertson’s that I avoid like the plague because all she does is roll her eyes and grumble when she sees people with any coupons. She is one eyeroll away from a tact but terse letter to corporate from me.
    I must say that due in part to some cashiers, I have toned down my couponing. Unless it’s doubler day I really never have more than 4-5 coupons at a time so there’s no excuse for attitude. It really surprises me when, knowing that they are on the front lines seeing people get all kinds of products for pennies on the dollar, along with the fact that they are not exactly the highest paid people out there, that they still choose to be ignorant about coupons.

  13. Amy Owen says

    Aw, I know the feeling too. There are a couple of things that I have learned.

    1. Confidence-I have learned that if I’m confident with what I’m doing, people are less likely to glare or be rude. They’re jealous that they don’t do what you do!
    2. Warn them-When I get in line with all my coupons I usually say, “I’ll apologize, right now, for all my coupons but this is a job for me!” And to the person behind me in line who says, “Why do I always pick the wrong line to get into?” Before I see an eye roll or get a sigh, I just say, “just to warn you, I have a lot of coupons and it might be an extra minute or two.” More often than not, they leave which makes me feel like the cashier doesn’t have to rush before the other customer’s head explodes. LOL I have found that by warning them, they don’t have anything to complain about and often I find that their mood is different after doing it.
    3. Brush it off. Yes, most cashiers will act like the money is coming from their paycheck, but I try not to take it personal. These days, people don’t like to do anything extra for customers, but coupons are part of their job. Unfortunately, it’s just part of what society is today. NO ONE likes to do anything extra for anyone, even if it *IS* their job.

    Hang in there. You aren’t alone!

  14. Linda says

    I like the kill them with kindness idea … even though that wasn’t my first instinct, lol! Loved the idea of thank you notes too!

    If that doesn’t work and you aren’t ready to take the store off your list (taking a store off your list is easier said than done, after all, you don’t want to miss their deals, lol), I would make a call or send a letter to their corporate office … simply explaining what happened and asking them how you can handle it better. They will probably appreciate the heads up on how their customers are being treated … they will likely address the situation … and they will probably appreciate that you didn’t call raging and threatening (my first instinct before I took a breath and counted to 10, lol), but instead trying to find a solution.

  15. clara says

    I know I get dirty looks, but I’m usually herding my kids and couponing so they feel sorry for me. If a coupon beeps, I just look at them puzzled and ask them to punch in the numbers. I’ll even tell them, “Follow your policy, I don’t want you to get in trouble.” They usually try to help me get the coupon to work. I have also been known to leave 16 boxes of Rice Krispies because my $4/4 Kellogg’s coupon didn’t work. It’s not worth it!

    At WinCo, if you have more than 10 coupons, the system automatically requires manager approval so I’ll tell the cashier, “I have a lot of coupons, do you want to call the manager now?”

    I try to chat with the people in line behind me and tell them “I’m going to be a while.” I try to be as prepared as possible so that it can go quickly too.

    And I offer to get back in line for several transactions. They usually just let me go again.

    • tiff w says

      Those are great tips! If someone gets in line behind me and I haven’t filled the belt with my stuff I usually ask them to go ahead of me. Even if they resist I say, “Really, this could take awhile.” And recently when I did this, the cashier as Safeway said, “Yes you SHOULD go ahead of her, it WILL take awhile.” (in a really rotten tone – so unlike Safeway used to be)

      • Hal says

        Safeway is a union store. The check out person is very likely in a union, certainly in WA. Remind them that they are representing their union with a diminished level of service. This could impact negotiating power and result in a lower salary.

  16. Anna K. says

    There’s some great advice here. I would echo all of it.

    I would also add a couple of things that have worked for me:

    1) I try really hard to coupon at times when I know the store won’t be busy. Besides being less of a stress to the cashier, it saves me a ton of time as well.
    2) I often say something like, “Thanks so much for doing this. I know it takes some extra time on your part, but right now my husband is in grad school and every penny matters!” I usually get a sympathetic response from that one…its not like cashiers are making tons of money either.
    3) I choose my coupon stores wisely. Like a lot of people, when I first started couponing I would drive all over town to get the best deals. Now I have only three stores that I am willing to go to, and I don’t even look at the rest of the coupon deals. My criteria for choosing stores is based on proximity to my house, quality of the deals, AND how easy/friendly it is to coupon there.

    Good luck!

    • says

      Yay! I’m doing it right! I chose my stores based on proximity to my house too. I went to Safeway today to shop, but the cashier I had was super rude. I only had about 8 coupons total too. :/ I may have to find a new grocery store to shop at.

  17. tiff w says

    Wow lots of great advice and “support” comments here! Shauna I really like yours. I too have noticed that when you diffuse a situation by over-kinding someone it really deflates the “fire” in them. I try to live this way in every situation – I have noticed in some stores lately that no matter how mature and kind I am some employees are just really rude. And it doesn’t matter if I have a few transactions, take forever at the checkout, etc – if I’m doing an honest and legal shopping with or without coupons the cashiers and managers need to act as if they appreciate my business.

    In my job I encounter some crazy demands that make me sizzle below the surface. But do I express anything but professionalism and gratitude for their business? No way! I work on commission and if I don’t sell, I don’t get paid – Nevertheless, they are a customer and even if they don’t buy from me it is my job and responsibility as a professional and a human being to treat others with respect and kindness. Even when I have to do ridiculous time-wasting things that I feel I shouldn’t have to do. There’s always time later to complain to myself or a close friend and get it off my chest. If I owned one of these stores (rite aid, target, etc) and had employees who represented my company in the negative way that I keep witnessing and hearing about I would flip out! Owners invest a LOT of money in their businesses and it’s an employee’s job to represent that company well and treat customers with appreciation. I think it does the owners a great service to let them know how their employees are reflecting on their company. I would want to know if I owned the store and I wouldn’t tolerate it for a minute.

    Wow, off my soap box now, haha. :)

  18. Lisa says

    My favorite Safeway to coupon at is Auburn because they have a self-checkout line where you can actually scan your own coupons. I have done some pretty complicated couponing there without ever talking to a cashier. Hopefully more stores get this technology. Otherwise, you need to accept that not every planned deal is going to work and be prepared to walk away without letting it get you down. I’ve learned not to drive out of my way just to work a coupon deal, and I only do them when I’m going by that store anyway. That way, if they don’t allow it or they don’t have the item it’s not nearly as frustrating.

  19. Yvonne Bush says

    I am a cashier and I try to treat all customers the same. You are all right that the store get reimbursed for these coupons so they should be happy that you are shopping there. I too am a couponer. I have had issues at Rite Aid also and sometimes at Albertsons. I usually only go to Albertsons when they have the TTV coupons and the cashiers do not seem to happy to see me when I come in. I have chatted with them and my last visit was actually pretty good. I know it does take more time when you have alot of coupons but cashiers should treat everyone the same. It is really helpful if a couponer does let the cashier know ahead of time if there is a coupon that needs a price on them. Most people who use coupons alot are good about it.

  20. Annie says

    My few notes – try the same store – but different times of the day – I used to shop sunday night – but found I was running into grumpy checkers – I moved it up to sunday around noon and it was a whole different crowd. I also profile my checkers. It takes some time – I normally start with the younger males.. they are normally excited by the savings (I know I hate to be judgmental – but honestly – its saved me). Additionally – after a particularly bad time at albertsons once (in Kirkland) I called the district manager. I was publicly “scolded” and the store manager stood by and watched it happened and didn’t stop it. I not only got a very nice hand written apology – a gift card – but I NEVER had problems there again (this is when I moved the time I went too so I wouldn’t see that woman again.. shudder)

  21. tiff w says

    One more and I will stop I promise :)

    Remember when a cashier is extra helpful, send a letter to the company and/or call a manager up from customer service to thank them! It only takes a minute to do and makes ALL the difference in the world for them and for you.

    I had a cashier at Albertsons who was SO nice and even gave me some extra coupons (and I shared some with her – this was early morning when there was no line). Wow I will drive 3 miles further to go to that Albertsons instead of the other Albertson’s because she was so great. And I wrote a letter to the company praising her!

    I did this at QFC about a year ago about the manager who was beyond helpful and friendly (I actually left the store in an overwhelmed happy-stunned state because of him). I wrote a letter to the corporate office about him and thanking him. I have no idea HOW he knew, but when I came back in he thanked me repeatedly for writing that letter! :D

  22. Tami says

    I hate to say it, but profile your cashiers and get to know them. I especially like the males cashiers that look like theya re some sort of manager (you, the guy with the tie?). They don’t want to be cashiering, but have to because there is a rush at the registers. They just want to keep the line moving and usually have the authority to just push a coupon through. Also, at Fred Meyer, Target and Safeway when the front end manager is sort of “working the lines” — you know, when they send customers to shorter lines or to a line that has just opened. When asked to move to another line, I say, “it’s ok, I don’t mind waiting because I know this cashier is coupon friendly.” I’ve also said, “no, that cashier is not very coupon friendly.” Just don’t give up.

    • Tami says

      One more comment — does anyone else have a problem with WalMart’s new coupon policy? I have been told on two occasions that if there are more than 5 coupons, they have to call a manager over to review all of the couoons to see if they are valid? The first time they told me this, I was in line more than 20 minutes. the cashier was very very nice, but I did keep apoligizing to her and to the customers in line (who all thought it was pretty stupid–cahsier included).

    • tiff w says

      Re: profiling cashiers: has anyone cashier profiled and was sorely mistaken about who they thought would be coupon friendly? LOL it’s happened to me before.

  23. kathy m says

    Hey Alicia! Hold your head up! Have fun with the coupons – they are just like money, after all! I always hand over my coupons at the beginning of my order, and by the time they scan them, any irritation is masked!
    There are several stores that are no longer taking the coupons you print out at home, due to fraudulent potential. So I no longer print them up – it’s not worth the bother to me. After all, I can’t PROVE that they are good!
    And by all means, keep track of all those rude people – ringing in coupons is part of their job, as is being polite to the customer! If you are going to write letters, I’ve found it always more successful to send them to the corporate offices. And email is just as good as a written letter, in most cases.
    Keep your head up, brush off the rudeness of others, and keep saving!

  24. says

    When I first started couponing I felt a lot of the same things. I found out later that some of the people who were especially rude had a lot of pressure on them from a boss to not mess up the transaction. If they accidentally took an expired coupon or allowed something they shouldn’t have they would really hear it from their boss. A couple of the cashiers I dealt with were so nervous about doing the deals I started to really feel sorry for them. I started coming at different times. I also have my favorite cashiers at the grocery store, and i will literally stand in a longer line to avoid a rude cashier. Yes, I’m probably overly sensitive, but life is too short. I also think it helps to start off with a little humor and prepare your cashier for the coupons. Good luck!

  25. Emilie says

    I too have gotten to know the cashiers at my store. I choose to shop there because they know me and my style of shopping. they know I will have coupons and my perks card. They know I will have my own bags or want paperc and that I always want my meat in plastic. Once one of the cashiers told me of an item that would be on sale the next day so I would save money by waiting.
    I may pay a little more but I would rather deal with polite and friendly people than the hassle at other stores.
    (Plus this store bags your groceries and will carry them to your car!)

  26. Christel says

    I have the same experience as Amy, I generally apologize upfront when I’m using coupons and cashiers generally say something like “No no, don’t apologize for saving money!”. Not that I have to apologize, but people react differently when you ackhowledge that whatever your doing causes them more work (even though it is part of their job).

  27. Jayme says

    Lots of great advice and feedback for the grocery chains out there. I work at a major retailer and coupon (I love this site by the way it helps me save money even with my crazy schedule) I don’t live in WA but have encountered the same on many of my trips to the store. I live about 30 min from Winn Co and sometimes make a special trip there for spices and bulk foods but never to coupon shop. My mom visited around Thanksgiving and we purchased about $300 worth of groceries there and had coupons only about $10 worth and apparently that amount locks up the register and required a very unfriendly manager to come over my mom was so mad (a 30 year retired cashier) at the service she couldn’t stop talking about it.p.s I havent been back.
    If you have ever worked retail you know everything is based on sales and she should have smiled and said thanks for shopping here. I know its no excuse for the behavior of these cashiers the companies do get the money back for the coupons but your total when you leave is what they get credit for at the store level when it comes to their payroll, so some of these cashiers are getting their hours cut because stores just aren’t meeting their sales goals(I have been scheduled some weeks only 12 hrs) while the managers don’t get any hours cut it really makes for a hostile and stressful work environment all the way around. Knowing this unless it is a super good almost free deal I choose to only shop and fund the payroll for the stores that treat me like a valued customer and their employees as valued members of the success of their store.

  28. Bernadette says

    I agree with what everyone has said about profiling the checkers. Trying to give people the benefit of the doubt, I will usually give a checker at least two times, people do have bad days! If they are consistently that way, I will avoid their lines at all cost – even if it means waiting in a long line. A fellow couponing friend and I avoid the 128th Albertson’s in S. Everett as much as possible – which stinks because it’s two minutes from my house! But, the women there (even the female managers) were always outright rude. They would be friendly to the person in front of me, but as soon as they saw the coupons their entire demeanor changed. When I do have to go to that store I will only go to either of the two male cashiers that tend to be there when I shop. About a month and a half ago, I had a problem with their advertised deal and the catalina didn’t print. One of the managers (I had never seen her before) took me over to another register to try to make the deal work (come to find out that that catalina machine had been giving them problems all day). She was so kind and so helpful and I thanked her profusely for being so patient and understanding with my coupons. She seemed a little surprised and I told her that she was the first female at that location to be friendly about coupons and that the few times I came to that store I always went to the male cashiers. She was shocked, and that was when she told me that she was an assistant manager and that they would be addressing it at their next meeting. It has gotten better at that location, but unfortunately, the damage was done and I am still leery about going there.
    So: 1) Be super friendly
    2) If I have someone with just a couple items behind me, I always insist they go in front of me
    3) I do warn people if I have more than one transaction
    4) Be organized! I have many checkers thank me for having transactions/coupons super organized. I have also been super apologetic in my ditzy moments when I’m not as organized as usual :)
    5) My experience at the 128th store taught me that if there are problems, talk to people in management so that it can be corrected. A problem can’t be fixed if they don’t know it exists :)

  29. Alicia Adams says

    Hello Everyone,

    What a blessing! Thank you so much for responding with your advice and comments. This makes me feel so much better since yesterday I was feeling really defeated. My husband said a lot of things similar when we talked about it last night and he said to just not frequent stores that act like that, regardless if they are by our home or not. There are a few stores that are super friendly to me, and I will be sending those thank you notes this week to show them how much I do appreciate them for being so kind and friendly with coupons. I will heed the advice that you all have given me and try it again. Again, thank you so much! It’s nice having others that have gone through this as well so that I know I am not alone :) Let’s band together and make a better couponing community so that we can reduce these types of situations!

  30. Ali says

    Most cashiers are working a minimum wage job and to be blunt, don’t care to learn the rules about mfg coupons. They are working for $15 an hr or less and when they see you (us) come into a store and use our BRAINS to get $xx worth of product for $.50, they are pure jealous. Plain and simple.

    My advice? – be thankful you have brains smart enough to shop! If they work in the stores and cannot figure out the deals, then they have serious dumbness issues. Sorry, but it’s true!

  31. Leah says

    I don’t like to profile cashiers, but found myself leaving a line if she/he seems to be in a foul mood. I learned to build a relationship with some of the cashiers at the stores that I frequent most often and look for them. I would even look for them before I start shopping and try to make sure that they won’t be on a break, by the time I’m done shopping. If I have to wait an extra 5 minutes in her line, I find it well worth not dealing with the headache of a grumpy cashier. There is one in particular that now swap deals w/ me or if I’m price matching will even let me know of a better deal. I don’t get lucky to find them on every trip, but it sure helps when I do.

  32. Tracy Wiseman says

    I have had these experiences as well and I am somewhat “thinskinned” and tend to take things personally. I have stopped shopping at the Albertson’s on Canyon Road because of their rudeness towards couponers. I believe they set themselves up for couponers with their doublers – they are profiling to get these customers and then when we show up with our coupons they treat us like a large inconvenience – so I stopped going to that particular Albertson’s and usually do not go for those deals – it’s simply not worth being treated this way.

    Also – I would submit that this situation has gotten worse since the program “Extreme Couponing” has come about. There are couponers out there that take advantage and are rude. I have an attitude that if something doesn’t work out like I plan I either ask them to remove the item(s) or pay what it costs. Either way I don’t get too excited anymore. All the ideas above are great! I also usually do smaller transactions so I don’t get so stressed and the cashier doesn’t have a big huge order to deal with along with the coupons. That is mostly for me because if I am trying to figure out too much at one time I get stressed and a headache. Anyway – hang in there.

  33. Ky says

    I have had some very similar situations. Once I was accused of photocopying coupons (I had two coupons I had printed in B/W on draft), and at the same store, they refused to accept my freshly printed new albertson’s policy. At another store, the cashier actually told me he hated these *F* B2S sales!! In front of my 3 year old even… So many times I have come home from Albertsons crying. When I felt it had gone too far, I made calls to the regional Albs director, and had a pleasantly surprising conversation, which eased the situation. And now, the cashiers at my local store have become very nice!

    PS This weekend at Rite Aid, a lady saw my binder (it was closed and my cart was empty), and she said loudly to her friends, “DON’T let me get in line behind HER!!” All you can do is laugh sometimes! :)

  34. Lisa f says

    I havn’t been shopping once in the 3 years of couponing without some type of strange look or discrepancy of sort. Hold your head high and ignore the uneducated nonsense! Eventually the stores will come to know you and the ridiculousness will stop, but there is a year long period of training you must provide to all local store managers and employees when you first start out. It goes the other way too, sometimes my outing are full of admiration and smiles.

  35. Leigh says

    I have encountered the glares and comments and I just remember the old saying, “kill ‘em with kindness.” I have learned of 2 places for me at least that never treat me like a criminal for using coupons. Publix stores here in South Carolina and the Military Commissary. I know not everyone can take advantage of the commissary, but they literally ask you if you have coupons right after they ask for ID and paper or plastic. I have never encountered anyone who has been rude to me there. Most people want to know how I did so well.. Just keep your head held high and smile… They are just jealous that you save more than they do. :)

  36. Chip says

    I agree about knowing which cashiers are the most coupon friendly. I suppose I am lucky because I the Albies that I shop at has some great cashiers who do their best to make sure my coupons and deals work the way they should. I do have one guy that I won’t go to because he is the biggest sour puss… although my wife goes thru his line and he is a nice to her… go figure. The night manager who is in charge of the crew that stocks shelves will frequently see me come in and makes a special point of asking me for my list…and then will personally guide me around the store to endcaps and displays he has set up with those products. Several of the checkers have asked me about deals and how to coupon. The same goes for my local Safeway… I know which checkers to go to AND one young gentleman there has now got into couponing so he gives me tips on some good deals. While there are some “bad apples” in the checker barrel, for the most part they are just average people trying to do a good job. PS. Try to get to know them… call them by name… and introduce yourself. Sometimes when I go to Albies I feel like I am entering the Cheers bar… many greet me by name even before I acknowledge them. I AVOID WALMART AT ALL COSTS…all of my trips there have been full of anguish…it’s not worth the savings…IMHO.

  37. Mary S says

    I want to share a story – I was at Winco in Tacoma (the new one) a few months ago. The cashier was WAY rude, as was the manager. Customers in line complaining that I was “wasting everyone’s time with coupons”….. Anyway, I calmly told the cashier and manager that I was sorry for the confusion, but that it was their job to assist their customers and if they couldn’t take a few minutes to help me, I would be glad to contact the Corporate office and get assistance from them. I apologized to each customer who had to wait behind me. When one lady said I should have tossed the coupons and just pay for my groceries, I asked if she was willing to pay for my savings. She said “sure, what is it-a buck or two?”. I smiled and handed her my receipt, pointing to the bottom where it showed I had saved almost $60.00! She was amazed, and apologized to me.

    Don’t quit couponing because of their bad attitudes – when someone’s giving you a hard time, just think about how good you feel when you’re able to take care of your family without spending every dime you have. That is all it takes to keep me going!

    • arussell says

      WOW – I’m so sorry you had that kind of an experience there – but yea, I bet you forever changed that one customer’s opinion of how much coupons really CAN save you.

      Here’s something to think about too – I just bought a week’s worth of our family’s groceries for $57 last week. You just effectively saved more on that transaction than I spent on a week’s worth of food for a family of four. That’s worth the hassle IMHO! Thanks for sharing.

  38. D'Anna says

    I feel for you w/ the Safeway thing, the manager at mine acts like I’m taking money out of his wallet every time he comes into contact with me. I also profile my clerks, I know which ones are vets at Safeway and they always override and push everything through…strangely my printed coupons scan and the ones out of the paper I get in their store never seem to.

    Wal-Mart was another place I had problems so I make sure to get teenagers or at least very early 20’s who all seem to be able to make the coupons scan without a problem.

    At the end of every transaction, no matter what store or if there was a problem or not I always tell the clerk/cashier, “You’re AWESOME! Thanks so much, have a good rest of your day”. From the responses I’ve gotten I don’t think they hear that often enough.

    Don’t give in to the meanie heads, kill them with kindness and move on.

  39. Kathy says

    Chip–I truly believe that you receive more courteous service because you are a man. My husband and I have shopped together but checked out seperately to “divide and conquer” with the coupon deals. I watch from the next lane and see that he always treated WAY better than me. Not much we can do about it–just an observation.

  40. ang says

    These are all wonderful suggestions and I am now inspired to carry thank you cards with me to fill out the cashiers name with the time and date so I can give to the nearest manager so that cashier gets recognition as I have met many really nice and understanding cashiers. Some even ask me how and where I find the coupons so they can do it too – every time the gas rises more than 0.03 we get a 5% increase in food as almost everything has to get shipped here (Alaska)….We all miss the days when stew meat was 1.00 a # instead of 3.99 # or mouthwash was 2.49 instead of 7.89. Anyways, when I get in line I ask the cashier if they prefer to scan my coupons as we go or wait until the very end? then I jot down their name and write “mid” or “end” so I know for next time I am in front of that cashier – if they roll their eyes I reply “bad day huh? you should have seen me yesterday or last week lol” That breaks the ice and gets them to rethink their “attitude” by showing compassion which hardly anyone does anymore. If I have more than one transaction (never more than 3) I apologize ahead of time letting them know and thank them for being understanding as this is the only way I can pay for my gas while getting necessities….this is always a conversation starter while we review “the good ol days” and other customers in line get involved in the conversation as well. Then I start to unload placing like items together starting with the heaviest first…..if I have more than 4 in the same transaction I let them know so they can either scan each separately or scan one and punch in the amount…. I leave all my pricematching and items that may have a problem for the very end – sometimes in their own transaction which saves a lot of time as well. When everything is done I always smile and laugh saying wow look at my savings or I can’t believe I saved this much or you’ve really made my day etc and I always thank them for their patience …..even the person behind me if they are getting impatient. If I have extra coupons I won’t be using and the person behind me has that item or has a pricematch to a store ad I have I give the coupons and/or the ad so they can get some savings too. This always makes for a fun hassle free shopping trip even when my toddler is being a pain. I have had cashiers time their break around my shopping trip, notify me of upcoming sales they heard of, share stories of other couponers lowest amounts (if you save more than 55% you have bragging rights lol) etc. I never go shopping tired, hungry or under the weather in any way – there is no such thing as a “quick” trip ….if I can’t spend at least an hour in the store I won’t go as the closest one is 15 miles away nor will I go for just a couple of items so I gotta make it count. If I can help it, I wait until the last day of the sale so I can time the shipment coming in (Wednesdays and Thursdays) and ensure the item(s) will be on the shelf or get a rain check if it had been delayed til the next shipment and try not to go the first 3 days of the month as thats when all the stores are flooded with huge shopping carts of people shopping for the month. Sometimes its unavoidable like the 2 week run of PFD sales in October, black friday in November or anytime in December. Oh be sure to find out if you can pre-order some items …some stores will and some won’t. Most here will for “bush orders” if the transaction is 300.00 or more or if they have a hard time keeping an item in stock like the 12 pk of Schick razors at Walmart selling for 2.22 – the 2/1 coupons have expired but there are 3/1 coupons going around until May……there has only been 3 shipments on them in the last 2 months with ~20 in each at my store so they really appreciated the heads up to get the people with coupons as well as the ones without just looking for a good deal.

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