Dear Pak'n Save

I am sorry I was grumpy with you earlier today.

As you helped the guy who came up to your counter AFTER me, I waited, somewhat patiently. And then I showed you my receipt and asked you for a $3.23 refund, for my scanning error.

It was for the chive cheese slices, that I bought for my husband’s lunches. Because he thinks making his lunches will save us money.

As I said at the time, I had rung up the cheese slices twice with my self-scanner, BY MISTAKE.

Now, don’t get me wrong. I love self-scanning, so I can keep an eye on my running tally. And apparently self-scanning and self-packing is how Pak'n Save helps me save money.

I was eager to get out of there and get home. You were eyeballing items in my shopping trolley and crossing them off my shop receipt, BY HAND. I asked you if you would like to do a rescan of my $207.76 worth of groceries (we’ve got the technology, after all).

I’M JUST DOING MY JOB, you said. I said, all this, for a $3.23 refund, and you were quite short, and you told me again that you were JUST DOING YOUR JOB.

I could have pointed you towards my perfect scanning re-check record at Pak'n Save. Or asked you about the customer being right.

However, I admit, after two hours of shopping in a crowded supermarket with an almost-four-year-old, I was not at my best. At the end of those two hours, I had realized that I had blown my supermarket shopping budget by $60.

So I returned a number of expensive items to the shelves. The kilo of dairy-free margarine (because you didn’t have any more of the 500g size in stock). The almond butter. The coffee. The vanilla extract. The baker’s chocolate. I’m sorry my receipt with all those voided items was so confusing.

Near the end of those two hours, I also selected and scanned a multi-pack of multi-grain sour cream and chive crisps, also for my husband’s lunches. And I said to myself, hmmm, what about those chive cheese slices. Maybe that’s too many chives for my husband’s lunches. So I took the chive cheese slices back, because, if I change my mind, I always return things to the proper shelf, and instead I chose and scanned cracked pepper cheese slices.

I didn’t know that the chive cheese slices had been scanned twice. Because it was actually my almost-four-year-old doing the scanning and I wasn’t checking his work THAT closely. Yes, I know only over 18-year-olds are allowed to use the scanners. Okay, in fact, I was supervising him VERY CLOSELY. And I checked his work again before paying. But somehow, in $207.76 worth of groceries, I missed one $3.23 item and overpaid.

It’s not like bottles of wine often don’t ring at the right price. The difference is usually at least $5. I’ve started shopping for bottles of wine that are mismarked in my favour.

I digress.

I really did not appreciate the way you slammed my $3.20 refund on the counter (we don’t have pennies in New Zealand). And then mumbled about me under your breath.

The $3.23 refund was so not worth the hassle of interacting with you. Is annoying a good customer, who admittedly is having a bad day, a new PAK‘nSAVE marketing strategy? Annoy them enough and they won’t ask for refunds?

What happened to “Everything we do, we do to save you money”?

I’m happy that you’re working and not just collecting the dole, but a little sympathy for my predicament, AS THE CUSTOMER, would go a long way. It’s called customer service. You know?


Anonymous said...


Juli said...

Anonymous, I agree with some of the points in the link you posted. Some customers can be rude and customer service is often a thankless task without any incentive to do better. However, I'm not usually a rude customer. Believe me! I usually bend over backwards to be kind. I am very sympathetic to their situation.

From AA to NZ said...

Enjoyed your post. I do hope you spoke to the clerk in your "Lazarus voice."

Juli said...

Lazarus is a department store in Ohio. The Lazarus voice is the voice you use when you are immensely frustrated with a salesclerk. Note that you are still polite and seldom resort to name-calling or profanity.