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Lifestyle

July 26, 2013

What to do when the cashier doesn't know store policies

Do you take advantage of price matching when you shop? It’s a great way to streamline your shopping. You can buy at a store that’s perhaps more convenient to you, while enjoying the lower sale price you found elsewhere. At least, that’s how it’s supposed to work. What happens when it doesn’t?

Dear Jill,

Why are so many employees clueless about their own policies? One store I shop has a policy that they will match the price of any competitor’s ad, as well as some online retailers’ prices. I found a video game online that was just a great deal. But I didn’t want to pay to ship it, so I went to the store and asked them to match it. The clerk was clueless. She asked for a manager, who said they do not match prices on the Internet. I did not have their policy with me and they refused to check. I came home and called the corporate line, and they said the store was wrong. What a pain this is when you waste time and gas.

Ofelia C.

I agree that there are few things more frustrating than a shopping trip gone wrong, especially when you encounter an unexpected battle in the checkout lane. Couponers and price-conscious shoppers take the time to research stores’ policies, and at times you may feel that you know the store’s policy better than the person standing in front of you does.

While my price-matching adventures usually go well, I have learned that it’s always worth taking a few things with me too to help the trip go as smoothly as possible:

1. Take the competitor ad with you. You might think this tip would almost go without saying, but several major chains advertise “ad-free price matching.” In my experience, this opens the door for potential issues. Without the ad in hand, expect a longer-than-normal wait if the cashier has to look up or verify each item’s price. And, if you’re matching an online price, print a copy of the ad in question, or be prepared to pull up the ad on a smartphone.

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