Sunday, August 30, 2009

Unfortunate Shopping Experience

CVS Pictures, Images and Photos
I am a serious couponer. I learned about coupons at an early age and continue to find new ways to use them to get free or very cheap items. The frugal path can often be a hard road to walk. Some people seem to be inherently suspicious of coupons and others just don't like the idea of folks not paying full price. I've weathered a few battles at customer service and have had clashes with cashiers, but most of the time, the effort is worth it. I stay at home with my kids and I try my hardest to stretch every dollar that I can. Today, I lost a huge battle and a little bit of pride...

For nearly two year, I've been shopping at the well known drug store, CVS. They have a great program that features "extra care bucks". You get money back in the form of coupons that can be used like money for future purchases. You can also use manufacturer coupons and CVS coupons to combine with these Extra Care Buck sale items. It is a little complicated, but it basically means that you can get items for mere pennies or free most of the time. I originally started shopping at CVS to earn extra care bucks to pay for diapers. Not only was I getting free health and beauty products, but I would often make a little extra that I would use towards those diapers. I frequent the same store and really like the young male cashier who rings up my purchases every Sunday.

On this particular Sunday, I made a mistake purchasing a product. Some items were mistagged and instead of checking, I just assumed they were correct and bought them. After my receipt printed out, I realized my error and wanted to return and repurchase the correct items. A new manager was called to the front and because I paid with these extra care bucks, I would only get back a refund in my out of pocket cost which was very little. It meant losing $13 in extra care bucks! That may not seem like much to most people, but it's CVS Monopoly money and it can go very far. I've made a couple of returns in the past and would receive my refund on a money card. I told the manager this, but he refused it and proceeded to be rude, angry, and loud in his refusal. I was humiliated. I left the store with my depleted extra care bucks and was proud of myself for not bursting into tears until I got into my car. (I'm not always so girlish, but he hurt my feelings!)

There really is nothing humorous about this story and I'm missing my beloved extra care bucks right now. I refuse to go back to that store, it would be just too damn shameful. That really leaves me with no options for CVS since most of the other stores near me have become 24 hours stores and all the other crazy couponers go shopping at midnight to clear the deals off the shelves. I am not interested in getting into that race. I plan to contact their customer service line so that this doesn't happen to another customer. It's one thing not to know your own store policies, it's another to berate a loyal customer over your own ignorance. It will be hard to divorce CVS and give up those free diapers, but I just have to be brave and do it.

Thanks for reading my vent. I feel a wee bit better even if my pride is still sorely wounded.


Tracy said...

Gee that manager sounds really unwise to be so rude as to make you cry! Sorry that happened to you (BTW-I cry in private too).

Daisy said...

Definitely write to the the customer service department of their home office. If you explain in detail what happened, hopefully they will give you the apology you deserve as well as the extra care bucks you lost. But I still would not go back to that store.

A.Marie said...

Oh my...I feel so bad for you. I know what it is like to be berated at a beloved store..Wags did something like this to me, just not so brutally, and it hurt my feelings. It took quite awhile before I'd go back in. I'd definitely contact Customer Service. But, don't throw in the towel just yet! Wait it out a little bit, then venture in for, oh, say some gum. Check around and see if Mr. Pain in the you-know-what is still around. Maybe he'll have been FIRED!!

Jessica said...

Tracy, thanks, I'm glad I'm not the only secret crier!

Daisy, I am planning my calm letter in my head right now. I'm not hoping for money back, but at least they can school the manager a little.

A.Marie, how did you go back? It would take me a long time to live that down. I think because I always go to the same cashier and he saw everything so I'd hate to go back and face him after that.