Today was an extremely frustrating shopping day for me. Over the years, I have become accustomed to dealing with cashiers that are unfamiliar with their store coupon policy as well rude cashiers because I had some coupons to redeem. I have always maintained my composure as we muddled through the transaction. Today, however, was very different and I dare to blame TLC's Extreme Couponing show.
It seemed that everywhere I went, every single one of my coupons was scrutinized. On more than one occasion managers were called in for additional guidance. Needless to say, I was becoming impatient after my fourth stop. For the first time, I actually broke out in a sweat out of pure frustration!
You see, I only shop one day per week due to the fact that "town" is 25 miles away. I make every effort to ensure that each of my shopping lists is in proper order and that all coupons are in compliance with what I am purchasing. My goal has always been to get my shopping done as quickly and efficiently as possible so that I can get home at a decent hour.
What I'm learning is that many stores are losing money due to the numerous fraudulent coupons that are handed over at the registers. At one store I was at, my cashier apologized numerous times for being so cautious with the validity of the coupons. She explained that she was fearful for her job. Apparently, this particular store had already let go four other cashiers for accepting invalid coupons.
It is unfortunate that so many people are feeling desperate enough to commit coupon fraud. Some forms of fraud have been in the form of photocopying and "doctoring" coupons so that they can purchase items at deeply discounted items. What is even more unfortunate is that those of us who are making every effort to follow the rules are now having to pay the consequences.
I am hoping that soon (very soon!) these "newbies" will quickly become tired of the extra scrutiny they will face and will let the rest of us return to "normalcy". In the meantime, we will have to learn to deal with stricter coupon redemption policies and lengthier check out times.
What has your experience been?