Gift Card Hell: "I'm sorry sir, that gift card isn't for our store..."


Jason2 021

From Fa_Ling, Tales From Retail:

I work at a large retailer for crafting supplies, and have been for about 3 months as a cashier. I worked here 6 months the year prior, as well. In our plaza there are a few other large stores, so keep this in mind.

Labels: Me = Me Confused Customer = CC Large store 1 = X Large store 2 = Y Large store 3 = Z Our store = U

So basically a customer walks up to me with a whole bunch of items, which isn't unusual. And I begin my usual.

Me: "I can help you at cash 2. Hi sir! How's it going?"

CC: barely audible mumble


Me: finishes scanning items "alright, your total is (approximately, I don't remember) $80. Would that be cash, debit, or credit?"

CC : "No no, card."

Me: "alright card it is! credit or debit?"

CC:" NO. Card, card!!"

Me: "....I'm sorry sir what type of card?"

CC: "THIS ONE." flails card about

Me:"....would you mind showing me please?"

CC: grunts, flashes me the card

At this point I realize it looks vaguely like a weird gift card so I figure okay then. Gift card it is..

Me: "Oh I see, a gift card! Alright then, go ahead and swipe your card at the reader for me please."

After multiple attempts and some annoyed grunting, I realize it's being rejected.

CC:" Why won't it work???"

Me: * takes the card and reads it properly * "Ahh, sir...this card is only valid at stores X, Y, and Z. Unfortunate it won't work because it does not belong with us. Sorry about that! Would you happen to have another method of payment perhaps?"

CC: "Why not?? It says here 'X, Y, and Z!' Those stores are right there!" points outside

Me:".....I understand that but unfortunately this gift card is only valid at those stores, not ours...."


Me:"'re right...It says X Y, and Z.No where does it say U..."

He then proceeds to argue with me for another 2 minutes while I keep pointing out that he's readying the store names the card is valid on and that our is not included. Finally, he just kinda gives up all annoyed and pays credit. That was an interesting one for sure......

Tl;dr: guy gets annoyed he can't pay with a gift card that isn't for our store.





A Rant Against Gift Cards



From an RHUer:

This is an unabashed rant against gift cards.

When I was a kid, a birthday present from a grandparent would often be a birthday card with cash inside.  Apparently this tradition exists no longer -- it's been replaced by the birthday card with a gift card enclosed.  There are even special-occasion cards with a slot built-in for the gift card!  Worse, the gift card gift has now made it socially acceptable to give "money" as a gift to any friend or acquaintance, rather than some thoughtful present.

So consider this scenario:  You go into some store, pick out, say, a $20 gift card for some other store or restaurant or whatever, and give it as a gift.  Now the recipient can use that card only in the specified store!  How is that gracious?  Cash would be better.

Okay, you say, so give them a pre-paid "credit" card instead.  But now there are restrictions where you can use these.  Or how about my experience:  I used such a "credit" card for a purchase that used up the value of the card.  I don't recall whether I trashed the card or whether the clerk did, but 2 weeks later when the item broke, the card was not to be found.  Nonetheless, the store put the money from the return back onto the gift card -- with no way for me to access it.

Then there was the time, just before cell phones were in every pocket, a parent gave his kids phone cards from the Post Office so they'd have a way of calling in an emergency.  Guess what:  the cards expired after a year or so -- unused. 

And that proves to be a characteristic of all gift cards.  You pay money for a card that restricts the user where and how it may be used and expires if not used before some date.  This was brought home to one person who had been in the habit of giving such cards as gifts.  One recipient was her parent.  When the parent died, this person (the executor) found a bunch of unused and expired gift cards! 

This person learned the lesson and stopped giving cards, but the cards seem no less popular than ever.  I guess you just can't fix stupid.








Gift Card Hell: Crazy Custy Doesn't Agree with Expiration Date


Carolanne 002

From allisonelle, Tales From Retail:

So this one is from last year while i was working at a small arts supply store. We didnt have reloadable gift cards, but had paper gift certificates you could purchase that were good for 5 years. The paper gift certificates were automatically generated by the cash register once the customer paid for it - but the cashier could not manipulate the expiry date on the gift certificate.

So a woman comes in and buys a 50 dollar gift certificate (GC) for her daughter's birthday and looks at the expiry date after it has printed out and this is the exchange the customer (c) and I (m) had:

C: Why does this GC expire in four years instead of five?

M: Let me see - oh no look here the GC expires exactly five years from today

C: No - it says in expires in 2020, and its 2015. That means it expires in 4 years.

M: I'm sorry - but 2020 is five years from now ma'am , it is currently 2015.

C: Yes - but it is half way through the GC should expire in 2021.

M: Im sorry to have to disagree with you - but the date today is april 30th 2015, and the GC Expires on april 30th 2020. Thats exactly 5 years - to the day.

Then the customer gets angry...

C: Are you an idiot - or a crook? You are ripping me off of a one year that this gift certificate should be valid for.

All the while her arms are folded and she is tapping her foot really aggressively with impatience

M: I don't believe I'm either. Look if I was born today, my first birthday would be april 30 2016, second birthday april 30th 2017, 3rd 2018, 4th 2019, and 5th april 30th 2020 - correct?

C: I don't see what your birthday has to do with anything. You're a crook, and a liar, and I won't ever shop here again!

She then rips the GC in half, throws it on the ground, and storms out of the store.

Honestly if I could - I would have made the GC good for one more year if I could of - but if you didn't think your daughter was going to use the GC - why are you even buying it??

I was happy to never see her again.




Store Closing Hell: Custy Rages Over Not Being Able to Get a Gift Card Refund



From  toast778, Tales From Retail:

A few years ago I worked for a pretty popular clothing store that was struggling. Our store was closing, but others remained open and you could still shop online. Our store was mostly empty, stuff in boxes and paper on the windows. We were still selling what little product we had, and generally people got the idea that we were closing what with the store in shambles and almost nothing left There was even a sign on the door stating we were closing.

This woman came in, who was very pleasant and asked for a gift card. It had something like $100 so I give it to her and before she leaves she asks, "Are you guys renovating, why is the store like this?"

And I reply, "Oh, our store is closing."

And her face contorts into complete rage. She will be Angry Lady for short.

AL: "WHAT?! You sold me a gift card I can't even USE NOW?!"

Carolanne 068M: "Well, just our store is closing. You can still use the gift card at other stores and online."


M: "I'm so sorry but unfortunately, there's no way to do that we can't do returns anymore."

AL: "This is YOUR FAULT you didn't tell me you were closing, you ARE going to be giving me my money back."

At this point she continues to scream and berate me as I'm apologizing profusely. I call my manager over who tells her the same exact thing. She was having none of it. My manager tells me to go work on something else so I wouldn't have to be subjected to the lady's torment.

As I'm working on something else this man who had been here the entire time comes and comforts me, smiling and saying to not take it personally and how horrible working in retail can be. He said I handled it well and just made chit chat as I'm trying not to cry as she is continuing to scream about me.

She demanded both of our full names because she was going to corporate to report us, get us fired etc. I'm like jokes on you, you can't get us fired if our store is closing! Eventually she got her money back and immediately went from rage to being sickly sweet. She came over to me and said, "I'm sorry I yelled at you, I know it;s not your fault but you can see where I'm coming from right?"

-- toast778