I just had to share this!
A couple of weeks ago we purchased four seat pillows from Walmart, and while we were shopping the other day we noticed they had been reduced 50%. So we decided to get the price difference back, since they will take them back within 30 days and then we could purchase them again at the sale price.
Sounds simple, doesn't it? You'd think we would simply be able to take them the receipt and let them refund the difference to our credit card, give us the cash, or even a gift certificate. The company I work for does this all the time, we have a 30 day price guarantee and if it goes on sale within that 30 days we simply give you an allowance for the difference.
When I approached the customer service desk, I was greeted by a young lady, who said that wouldn't be a problem, but that I'd have to make the new purchase first, then I could get a refund on the old pillows. Easy, right? Wrong.
Instead of just typing in the numbers off the receipt, she told me I'd have to go out to the store, get the other pillows, then check them out and then return them up to the desk. I thought it was ridiculous, but there was no explaining it to her. But, my fear was this- if I went out and purchased four new pillows, then walked up and tried to get a refund with the original receipt, they would think I was trying to steal something. It just didn't look prudent, and seemed quite criminal.
But I was at her mercy- she was the only one working there, so I did as she instructed, but only after tracking down my wife who could hopefully act as an alibi after I got tossed into the pokey.
Worried that it would look inappropriate, when I went to the cashier to check out the pillows, I explained to her that I would be immediately taking them to the return desk for a refund. She looked puzzled, so I explained why. Of course she thought it was as ridiculous as I did, but she rang me up and I paid, then off to the customer service desk I went as she chuckled.
When I arrived, the young lady I'd been talking to was gone, of course, but there were two others there. And of course, after seeing me purchase the pillows at the register right in front of them, questioned why I had a receipt that was two weeks old and was trying to return the pillows I just bought for a lower price.
I explained it to them, but they were as confused as the first girl. Can't blame them really, it made no sense. So finally I explained it like this:
"Pretend I bought these, left the store, and have now gone home, swapped them out with the original pillows, and am now returning the ones I bought two weeks ago. These, in essence, are the pillows from two weeks ago."
They still weren't sure of themselves, you could tell by the look in their eyes, but I guess I seemed convincing enough that it was enough for them, at least if nothing else than to get rid of me.
So the young man gave me my refund by doing a credit to my card, then he handed me the receipt. But he wasn't done. Then he pushed the pillows toward me for me to take them.
I told him it was that girl's idea for me to go through all of this, and that I would *NOT* take them all the way back to the back of the store and put them on the shelf for them. She wanted them up there, let HER go take them back.
But that was not his intent.
"You paid for these" he told me.
Then I realized he was wanting me to take the pillows home. So I explained that yes, I had paid for them, but I had returned them as well. But he insisted that those weren't the ones I returned, it was the "other" pillows. Which technically it was, but the pillows on the counter were only representing the pillows I was returning.
I explained the other pillows were still at my home, and if I took those, I would have 8 and only paid for 4. He was still confused. And by this point, so was I. Even I wasn't sure if what I was saying was correct. Grrrrr!
So finally I just told him I wasn't taking them and I walked off. I don't feel its right to take something I didn't pay for. But, I never thought I'd see the day I had to argue with a merchant that I didn't want something given to me for free.
The entire ordeal could have been avoided had the first girl put on her thinking cap and used some common sense. At my job I'm a trainer, and it just so happens the next couple of weeks are on logical and critical thinking. Needless to say, this story is going to be used as an example of what I hope my training will prevent.