Cashiers! Put the damn receipt in the bag, and don't bother me with it!

Okay, here’s how it used to work. The cashier rang up your purchases, then hit “total”. The register spit out a receipt, which was put in the bag with your purchases. Which is where it belongs! You paid, and got you change.

But then someone came up with a new development in cash registers. Now, when you pay, the cashier enters the amount you gave him/her, and the register shows what the change should be, then the recipt pops out and is, invarably, handed to you along with your change.

It seems to me that the handing-the-customer-the-receipt thing started happening because with the tell-the-cashier-what-change-to-give registers, the receipt pops out too late in the transaction, after the bag is already filled and handed to the customer.

I don’t like this. I want the cashier to put the receipt in the bag where it belongs, and not bother me with it.

And when it comes to purchases which are not being put in bags, such as buying one candy bar, one ice cream bar, one newspaper, one magazine, or the like – I don’t want to be given a receipt at all. It used to be standard practice not to issue receipts for purchases like this, but lately, if I buy a magazine or candy bar at a newstand, I’m handed a receipt. What am I supposed to do with it, Mr. or Ms. Cashier? Huh? When the single item I’ve purchased is not going into a bag? Actually, I realize that the cashiers are just following policies set by someone higher up; I wish the policy setters would re-think this. Who would want a receipt for the purchase of one ice cream sandwich, or one newspaper? Or even an ice cream sandwich, a newspaper, and a magazine?

I think that these registers that tell cashiers how much change to dispense were a really bad idea. They’re a classic example of “fixing” a problem that didn’t exist. What cashier needs to be told what change to dispense? Making change is extreamly easy. It does not involve “doing arithmetic in your head” – all you need is to know how to do is count. Just count. All the cashier has to do to make change is count from the amount of the sale to the amount of the bill tendered. Anyone can do this; anyone can learn it in minutes.

Sorry, but I don’t want the reciept in the bag. if I need it (to return things, to send off for free offers or whatever), or if I’ve used a credit card, I really prefer to have it handed to me.

Many cashiers have asked me, anyhow.

Hazel, you must have spent a lot of time in supermarket queues mulling over this one. Why not just put the receipt in the bag?

And as for the tills showing the amount of change to give – your biggest worry here is not that some young thing straight out of high school doesn’t have to do the backwards-counting thing we used to do with change (and which I used to do in my last job sans cash register), it’s whether they’ve overcharged you.

Check your receipt before you leave the store. Something that’s a little easier when it’s handed to you.

[li]The cashier gives you the receipt because of all the customers who bitch at them for not giving them the receipt instead of putting it in the bag. Thus, stores created policies requiring them to hand them to the customer.[/li][li]The cashier gives you a receipt when you buy one candy bar, because of the customers who bitch about not getting receipts. Many stores even have “If you don’t get a receipt, you get $X off” policy now.[/li]The change to having the amount tendered entered and the change being printed on the receipt came about because of customers who claimed they were shortchanged.

Sorry, but this is absolutely ridiculous. It is NOT always easy to work out change in your head (particularly when the bill comes to 14.28 and the customer gives you 25.03), and even when it is, it’s still slower than the machine working it out for you. In a busy shop this would slow the queues down tremendously. And if you don’t think a LOT of people would be given the wrong change, you must not have ever worked at a cash register.

Hazel, I feel your pain. But I disagree. When I’m buying several items, I want the receipt in my hand, because I move my cart out of the way and then go over my receipt to make sure everything scanned correctly. If it’s just one or two items, I ask the cashier to just throw the receipt away for me. A lot of places have a policy stating that if the cashier doesn’t hand you a receipt, you get discounts or free stuff.

Conversely, when I am at my job as cashier, I ask if the customer needs a receipt. And you will be amazed at the number of people who say yes, they want one, when all they bought was a $0.25 pack of cheese and crackers, or a newspaper, or an ice cream bar. I have absolutely no idea what they do with them. Are Nascar Super Speedway Sundae Bars tax deductible? I can only assume that they think someone is going to stop them on their way out the door and ask for proof that they purchased whatever it is they’re carrying.

On a related note, let’s talk about bags. I’ll offer a bag to the guy who just bought three cans of soda and half a dozen candy bars, and been told, “No, I’m fine.” The next person in line wants me to double-bag his “Easy Rider”.

It takes all kinds to make the world go round.

I no longer carry cash–at least not to the grocery store. I use a debit card or credit card.

I do NOT want my receipt thrown into some random bag, willy-nilly. If I want my receipt in the bag, I can put it there pretty easily myself.

But then, I only go shopping once a week or so, and thus have several bags. I suppose if I only were getting one bag, and were in a hurry, and didn’t want to keep track of my receipt, then maybe I’d want it in the bag. But not enough to lose sleep over.

I can’t remember ever being asked by a cashier if I want a receipt. I wish they would ask, so I could say “no” when I’m making a small, no-bag type purchase.

No doubt there are people who prefer being handed the receipt. I’m not among them. I want the receipt in the bag, and it seems to me that the cashier should put it there; I shouldn’t have to do it myself. Maybe cashiers should ask, “should I put the receipt in the bag?”

Maybe you could ask the cashier to put it in the bag?

Just a thought.

As Hazel already noted, the shop might have a policy that the cashier is required to follow.

Many years ago I worked at Tower Records in Greenwich Village which is, as you might imagine, a very busy shop. Security decided they needed to be able to differentiate between people walking out with paid-for merchandise and people walking out with stolen goods, so they ordered cashiers to (a) issue ALL customers a bag, and (b) staple the receipt to the bag, in such a way as to seal the bag shut.

Well, a lot of customers absolutely HATED this, and the cashiers took a lot of abuse for doing it, but they had no choice - if they were caught not doing it they were written up.

Moral of the story is, ask cashiers if they can hand you your receipt/put it in the bag/whatever, but if they can’t, it’s the manager and not them you should complain to.

Well, at my store one person bags your groceries and puts them in a cart for you while the other one rings things up. The cashier can’t put the receipt in the bag, because by the time the transaction is done, my groceries are neatly bagged and in a cart about 6 feet away. Luxury.

But Jeeze…such a little thing to fret about.

SOP for me is to ask the customer if s/he would like a receipt AND ask if a bag is wanted. If they say yes to both I’ll ask if I should put the receipt in the bag (I manage to do all this without wasting time, imagine that). The only time when I automatically hand the person their receipt without asking if they want it or if it should go in the bag is if it’s a credit card receipt (we have a separate machine for CCs, so it’s a different receipt).

When I’m shopping and get the receipt handed to me with the change I just shove it in my wallet with the money most of the time and sort it out later. It’s just not a big deal to me. I’ve never had the money complain to me about being forced to share its space with a receipt for fifteen minutes until I’m out of the way and can straighten things out…

One thing that does minorly miff me is when I have mixed change (bills and coins) and the cashier places the bills and receipts across my palm and then dumps the coins on top of the bills, thus making it nearly impossible for me to put anything in my wallet because my other hand has my bag of purchases in it, so I have to shove everything into my pocket. THAT’S annoying. So when I’m at work I give the customer the coins first, THEN the bills, and then the receipt - not all at once.

Yesterday at Safeway I bought a 250g tub of creamcheese, nothing else.

“Do you need help out with that?”

Yes, please, get the forklift out from the stockroom. Yes, Safeway insists that cashiers ask everyone if they need help out with their crap,even if my order would fit in my coat pocket with room for my car keys. Also, in some greasy attempt to feign ‘personal service’ they will read your name from the receipt and say “thank you Mrs. Jones”.

  1. This is about as personal as all those intimate letters I get from Publisher’s Clearing House.

  2. I’m not Mrs, thank you very much.

  3. My name is announced (and in my case, mispronounced) for all to hear, which allows the panhandlers outside the store to address me by name when shilling for change.

Staff get disciplined if they don’t do this, so rather than piss on some wage slave I had my name removed from the horrid card they make you use to get the sale prices. It now reads " Safeway Shopper". So now when I get my receipt given to me I’m told:

“Thank you, Mrs. Shopper”.

Also allow me this opportunity to piss & moan about the change on top of the bills delivery method too. I can’t juggle bags, the receipt I’ve just been handed (which is why I want the receipt in the bag, BTW) and try to slide coins into my semi-free hand to be put away. So I’ve gotten blunt. I ask for to be given the coins first. If they don’t oblige and I’m presented with the money pizza-bills crust and coin toppings-I pluck the coins off, put them in my pocket, then get the bills. Hey, I don’t want to be a hag about it but if I ask and they don’t give enough of a shit to oblige, screw 'em.

You know why this happens now? When the till says the change is $5.30, they fish out a $5,then the 30c. In the olden days, you’d count off backwards and get the coins first; “that’s $4.70 from $10.00- 80, 90, $5.00 and $10.00”. Racinchikki,can I shop at your store?

racinchikki, I, too, want to shop where you work!

And I, too, hate being given the coins on top of the bills and receipt in one unweildy handful. I think Annie is right. I hadn’t realized it, but this, too, results from those cash registers that tell the cashier what change to give out. I’d thought it was something cashiers were being told to do by supervisors who thought it would be quicker then giving first coins, then bills. (I don’t think it actuall saves any time. Probably about every 5th person in line drops their change and has to hold the line up while picking it up. This cancels out any time saved.)

Many stores require that the customer be asked if they require assistance with anything, regardless of size, because, and I know this will seem hard to believe, but some people insist on 5 star service in grocery stores and feel that all labor concerning groceries should be done by others.

I’ve watched people ask for help out to the car with nothing much more than some bananas and bread. Makes you wonder how they managed to shop in the first place.

I have two businesses for which every receipt is a tax deduction, so I always put those receipts in my wallet. That way I don’t misplace them; every so often I empty them out of my wallet and enter them into the proper spreadsheet, then “spike” them. For personal purchases I just say “In the bag is fine.”

And for me change on top the bills works, because I have the change pocket on the side of my wallet already open; I just dump the coins in there, then slide the bills into their slot. Back when I just kept my money in my jeans, however, I preferred it the other way. The grass is always greener, etc.

I had some guy bitch at me about that-handing him the receipt instead of putting in the bag. Well tough shit. Too many people lose their receipts, so I hand it to them. That way, they can look at it if they need to. They still ask me-“Where did you put my receipt?”
I gave it to you, moron.

Hazel-if that’s the WORST thing that happens to you, you’ll be lucky. I think handing it to you personally is very polite.

And for the record, you should always take your receipt, no matter how small the item. A, it gets you into the habit, and B, if you have to run back into the store, if someone questions you, you have a receipt.

I give the change first, then count the bills back to them.

Annie-thank you for not taking it out on the employees-they wanted us to do this at Kmart and we all refused. I hate it when customers read my name badge and say, “Oh, hi Kathi.” What the fuck? You don’t know me. I know it’s on my tag, but it just feels rather creepy, I think, when a total stranger addresses you by name.

On another note-I sometimes joke if someone gets a pack of gum, “Hey, how about some help out to the car with that?” (I know, almost as bad as, “It must be free today!”)

Yeah, I’m quite sure it’s some head office moron-not anyone who, like, actually works with the customers- who dreams up this faux-personalized crap. I also sense how icky it makes the checker feel.

Alas, the evil S is the only grocery store within walking distance. The less anal store across town has checkers who manage to be pleasant and personable without reading from a script. It’s a happy place to be (oh yes, it is next to the liquor store, why do you ask?) :slight_smile:

I’m with andros. I pay for many purchases with my debit card. I need to have that receipt put into my hand, so that I can immediately place it in the special “debit card receipt” pocket of my wallet, where it will sit until I have an opportunity to transfer the information to my checkbook.

A receipt buried in one of many shopping bags is far too likely to be thrown out or misplaced. Besides, one of the ways that I know that I’ve already recorded the purchase in my checkbook is that the receipt is “loose” somewhere.

However, I will join in the rant against coins being placed on top of bills in the change. I worked my first retail job at age 14, and I still remember the training – coins into the customer’s hand first, then the bills. I have to strongly resist the urge to correct any cashier who does it the wrong way.

Since this question came up several times, I thought I’d throw in my two cents.

My SO works at a group home. He needs a receipt for anything he purchases for the group home or for his clients, whether that be a candy bar, nasal spray, or toilet paper. I’ve known several people who get reimbursed, and they always need receipts. As for me, I often pick up whatever my sister needs while I’m out, and then we add up the receipts when I get home to see how much her stuff came to. A lot of people do need a receipt for one reason or another.

I do laugh when the person at Safeway asks me if need help out with one or two items. I assume it’s store policy. They also mispronounce my last name everytime. I’m used to it, and don’t bother correcting them.

I don’t care if the receipt is in my hand or in the bag. When they hand it to me, I do wind up with a backlog of old receipts sitting in my purse and all my pockets, but then again, I could clean out my purse and pockets more often.