Friday, April 16, 2010

Why I'm Growing to Dislike Shopping At Wal-Mart

I had an unpleasant experience with a Wal-Mart manager today when I tried to use the P&G $1 off any Tide coupon to buy the travel size Tide. (The travel size is $.97.) When the cashier scanned the coupon, the machine beeped and she called over a supervisor. The supervisor looked at it and said that it should be fine and that she would check on it. She came back a moment later (probably felt like an eternity to those waiting behind me) with another manager who said she would only do one and not 10. I said that I was buying 6. She said, and I'm giving her exact words here . . . "Well, for one thing, this is $.97, and the coupon is for $1. I mean, come on." And she gave me a look that said that I was trying to pull the wool over the cashier's eyes and do something wrong. My eloquent response was, "What?" Not that I was asking her to repeat; no, I was doing that beligerent, "What?" that we teachers detest from our attitude-filled students. She said that she could do $.97 but not $1. I said that if she could make the coupon valid for $.97, then I'd be fine with it. She said, "I can do one." I said, "Well, then I'll take my coupons back. You can keep the Tide. Other stores will accept the coupon." She said, "Fine," and walked away.
Her whole, "I MEAN, COME ON," really got me fired up. I don't know if she realizes that if Joe Schmo consumer bought a Tide single load packet, Walmart would gain $.97. But if I bought with my $1 coupon, P&G would reimburse $1.08. She just turned down money for her store. Oh, well, Rosalind.
I don't pretend to know all the ins and outs of how a store gets reimbursed for coupons, so I don't know what hoops Wal-Mart stores have to jump through to get their money back from manufacturers. But she was WAY nastier to me than any manager ought to be toward a paying customer. And now that I coupon, Wal-Mart is NOT the cheapest place for me to shop anymore. I used to go to Wal-Mart at least 3 times a week. I go once a week to get my newspapers, and that's usually it. (Tonight I was shopping for a baby shower for a lady who is registered at Wal-Mart.) I'll probably still get my papers from there -- it's cheaper and I don't have to worry about a coupon. (Wait, are there coupons for the paper? If there are, I want to know about them!)
I used the form on Wal-Mart's website to share my experience with whomever-receives-that-kind-of-thing. I don't know what will come of it, but I do know that I am happy to know that I can shop other places and get good or better deals. I'm not stuck shopping at Wal-Mart.
And that's my bad-attitude rant for the day.

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