"Cash or Credit, Sir?"

I don't go shopping very often. When I do, it's typically in our po-dunk area. So our big city shopping trip / anniversary vacation was a bit of a shock to the system. Especially so when, on more than one occasion, a cashier asked me the simple question of, "Cash or credit, Sir?

This was an easy one, as we were spending all cash on the trip.

--What!? In the big city? With muggers, and pick-pockets?! What if you got robbed? What if they broke into your hotel?! What..... --- I know, I know, I know, calm down and b-r-e-a-t-h-e.

After responding that I would be paying cash, it was the reply that really surprised me.

"Oh, you'll have to use that register for cash" - indicating that the other cashier would have to help me. Now I tend to err on the smart-ass side, so my initial thought is to ask if he/she can't count. The look on their faces did not indicate that they were in the mood to put up with any crap, so I went on about my business.

Now this did not necessarily mean that I had to wait longer or that my transaction would take longer than the card wielding shopper behind me. What it did mean was that a consumer has a cashier telling them that they cannot help them. Which is annoying for any reason.

The Mrs. being the smart person she is, had a couple hypotheses:
  1. That the store had one cash register per area, and if they opened a second due to higher demand, then it was plastic-only.
  2. With less registers stocked with cash, it's easier to open and close registers.
  3. With less registers stocked with cash, it reduces their liability for theft.
Any retail personnel out there willing to shine some light on this?


Fit Wallet said...

Whatever the reason, there should be a sign indicating it's a credit-only line. Nothing bothers me more than waiting in line, only to get to the front and have the cashier tell me I have to go elsewhere. That's just bad service!

Mr. NtJS said...

Would it really kill them to put a little sign up that says, "credit only"?

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