Discount Rats: The Almost 100% Discount -- How a Customer Basically Robbed the Store of over $300, and did it Legally
The store was super busy -- midday on a Saturday, busiest time of the week. Almost every employee was working that day -- a few had been called in because of how busy it was. We were having a sale on all clothing items: 50% off their original prices.
There was a group of women who'd been shopping for hours, totally cleaning out the clearance section. They had so many items, it was crazy. One of the women asked my co-worker if the 50% was off of the original price or the clearance price. My co-worker answered her clearly saying, "The original price." The girl who was with the woman spoke over my co-worker and said "It's off the clearance price!" My co-worker and I both corrected her and told her that it was 50% off the original price, again. She nodded, said 'okay', and went back to shopping. Thinking we'd answered her question thoroughly, my co-worker and I went about handling our busy store.
About an hour later we hear someone yelling at the registers and both of us look up to see what's going on. It's the woman we'd spoken to in clearance and she's irate. We both just go about hanging clothes, not wanting to get involved because we're already stressed enough with how crazy busy we are. But to our dismay, we get involved anyway.
Walking towards us, with our manager at her side, is the woman who asked us about the sale. She's pointing at us, so angry she's red in the face. My manager walks over and says "girls, this customer is saying that you two told her that our clearance sale is 50% off the clearance price". We look at each other in total confusion. We'd told her the exact opposite -- we'd corrected the girl with her when she'd said it was 50% off clearance! Both of us immediately tell our manager this, but she's pissed and she's only worried about what the customer is claiming.
All of us go up to the registers to 'take care of it'. The woman told the story again -- in her version, we'd reassured her that the sale was 50% off the clearance price and, we'd corrected her friend when she'd claimed otherwise. Her friend vouched for this version of the story and, they demanded that they get the discount they'd been promised. For some reason my manager gave in, claiming (to the customer) to believe their story over ours -- she told the customer that we'd probably misunderstood her question, but that in the end, we'd been in the wrong.
As the transaction was completed, my coworker and I were made to stand behind the registers. We felt like we'd been totally put on the spot -- the women were glaring at us over the counter and, they snickered at us when my manager decided to give them their discount. It was super unfair, especially when we'd given her the correct answer in the first place.
Let me just get all these details straight before I tell you how much money these women got off their purchase. The sale our store had going on was 50% off all clothing items. The clothes in the clearance section had already been marked down from their original prices by 50%. They were already on sale -- the promotion our store was having extended that sale to all other clothing items. If you read the fine-print its obvious, it was written like this: 50% off all clothing items (original prices).
So all in all, this woman and her friends got off with the marked down clearance prices (which were already 50% off the original prices), 50% off of the marked-down prices and, an additional 30% for the inconvenience. So here's an example of how this discount worked: most of our clearance tops were $16. Half of 16 is 8, 30% off $8 is $5.6. This woman had at least thirty tops. $16 x 30 is $480! She got 50% off of that and, an additional 30%. That means that this woman literally paid $168 for a transaction that should've costed her almost $500. It's like she robbed the store of $312!
It totally blows my mind that she got $312 worth of free stuff. But hey, the customer is always right, folks.