Paying For Your Laziness

(I work at a four-storey mall on the third floor. An elderly woman walks up to me, asking to double-check the price of the dress she is holding, which is on sale. I go to the cash register to check it.)

Me: “It costs [amount].”

Customer: “I don’t know if I have enough money on my credit card, but I want this dress.”

Me: “We have ATMs on the first floor; you can check your balance there. Meanwhile I can hold onto this dress so when you get back, it’ll still be here.”

Customer: “But I don’t want to go to the first floor. It’s so far away.”

Me: “Ma’am, the escalators are right around this corner. There are also elevators located there—” *I point to them* “—if you find that more convenient.”

Customer: “Can’t you check my credit card balance here?”

Me: “No, I can’t.”

Customer: “Isn’t there really any way?”

Me: “Well, if you try paying by card and don’t have enough funds, the transaction will be declined, but that’s not exactly checking the balance.”

Customer: “Let’s do that, then!”

(I see what kind of customer this is, so I try to avoid misunderstanding as much as possible.)

Me: “So you’ll try paying for the item?”

Customer: “Yes!”

(I take her to the cash register and scan the dress.)

Me: “It’ll be [amount]. Are you sure you’re going to pay now? You still have time to go to the first floor.”

Customer: “No, it’s fine. Let’s do this.”

(So she put in the card, inserts the PIN code, and presses the accept button. The transition goes well, I put her dress in a plastic bag, hand her the receipt, and thank her for the purchase. She just stands there with a blank stare.)

Me: “Umm, I’m sorry, ma’am. Is there a problem?”

Customer: “Did I… Did I just pay?”

Me: “Yes, you did.”

Customer: “But… I didn’t want to pay for it! I wanted to exchange my recently purchased dress for this one!”

(Our store doesn’t offer refunds. We only offer to change the items for something else of the same value, or to make a gift card for our store in the value of the item purchased.)

Me: “Sorry, but I warned you.” *I explained her our policy*

Customer: “So I won’t get my money back?”

Me: “No. No, you won’t.”

Customer: “Why didn’t you warn me I’m going to pay for the dress for real?!”

-> Paying For Your Laziness

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