To the Woman Ahead of Me in Line With the Expired Coupon

To the woman with the expired coupon,

I was the guy standing behind you at the checkout line. I never made eye contact with you. I looked down at my phone. I tried to keep my composure through your little rant. I wanted to say something but just knew it would not go over well.

So now I would like to tell you that you were wrong today and you give customers like me a bad name.

See, when the cashier was scanning your products you were smiling. You were making small talk with her and being very nice. At the end you handed her a pretty big stack of coupons. She started to scan each one and then she stopped.

She told you that she could not take one of the coupons because it was expired. It was for Tide detergent. You looked at the coupon and acted like you were in shock. Maybe you were. You said that the store has taken expired coupons before and the cashier said she was not allowed to do so.

Right after you asked for a manager.

A manager came up and the cashier showed him the coupon. He looked at it and apologized to you but the store has a strict policy on expired coupons. You once again said they have done this before and the manager once again apologized and said he was not able to take the coupon.

Your demeanor changed drastically. You started to get loud. You started to say that it was ridiculous that they could not take your coupon. That you spend hundreds of dollars each week at this store and the store should not worry about a small amount off the bill. The manager for the third time apologized. You called him an idiot and asked for the corporate number.

He gave you the corporate number and you called him an idiot once again. He apologized and you said that you did not want anything and you stormed out. The cashier had to void your order out.

Let me explain to you why neither the manager nor the cashier is an idiot. The store has a policy that is clear on their walls and online that they do not accept expired coupons. Expired means past the date it is today. Just like you would get a ticket if your car registration were out of date. Just like you would pay a late fee if you did not pay your bill on time. The coupon you had, which could not have been for more than a dollar, was out of date.

You made it known to everyone around you that you are entitled to break the rules because you spend money. Well, we all spend money. I do not get a discount because I get gas at the same gas station. I cannot be rude to employees because I go to Starbucks every day. The rule was set. You choose to fight it. You acted like a child who did not get the Hot Wheels he/she desired. You could have just said you do not want the Tide detergent and got the rest of the stuff. You could have not ruined everyone's day because you your mistake. Yet, you made it into a big issue.

The manager cares about his job. So does the cashier. If he lets you use an expired coupon then he broke the store policy. I would bet that you have used an expired coupon before. People would pay the extra dollar to not hear you complain. Then this happens. You get an entitled customer.

Your bullying tactics are exactly what makes me embarrassed to be a consumer.

When would it end though?

It ends when someone follows the rules.

That is the policy. There is no reason for you to be rude. There are other places that accept expired coupons. But this was not about an expired coupon. This was about a customer who thought she was always right. You made into a big deal. Probably because you have heard that the customer is always right.

Well, you were not right. You were wrong. Customers are wrong quite often.You owe the cashier and manager an apology. You will not though. You will call the corporate number, skew your story and they will send you something in the mail because no one wants to lose a consumer for less than a dollar. It is a tough market. You probably would be a good consumer to lose.

Because you did not, I apologized to the cashier and the manager. I told them that it was good that they upheld the store policies. It was not about the insignificant dollar amount you would have saved but more about a woman who felt entitled. I also told them that I felt bad they were insulted.

The manager looked at me and said, "It happens."

I told him it should not. People should respect the expiration dates on coupons.

More than that, people should respect people.


The guy behind you at the store