Author Topic: The Great Bag Debate....(no I do not want to debate it.....)  (Read 7317 times)

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Knitterly

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Re: The Great Bag Debate....(no I do not want to debate it.....)
« Reply #15 on: August 12, 2012, 02:35:11 PM »
I really do feel your pain.  Around where I live, it was a blanket policy instituted by the municipal government and had nothing at all to do with individual stores.  You wouldn't believe the abuse I've heard customers give to cashiers about it, though.  A few times I stepped in and just said something along the lines of "I'm sure she doesn't have the authority to change the municipal law.  You could probably write to [councilman/mayor]'s office about it, though."

Charliebug, I would just ignore the rant, give them a thin smile, finish the transaction without the bag and move on to the next customer.  If the rant does get abusive, offer to call the manager and then do just that.
Don't engage. 
It's really hard to be polite to rudeness.

Phoebe

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Re: The Great Bag Debate....(no I do not want to debate it.....)
« Reply #16 on: August 12, 2012, 08:15:54 PM »
So how many customers bring in plastic bags from the competitors' stores (complete with their logo) to use?  >:D

BC12

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Re: The Great Bag Debate....(no I do not want to debate it.....)
« Reply #17 on: August 13, 2012, 12:18:58 AM »
I worked in the hospitality industry for a long time, and a lot of the training I received said to sympathize with the complainer using statements like, "Oh, gosh, yeah, I can see why that would cause you trouble/concern/annoyance." Of course I'm just paraphrasing here, I'm pretty sure that wasn't the wording I was instructed to use. But I found that being "buddy-buddy" with them and not using "customer service-y" language really seemed to work for me and made them more receptive to any resolution to their problem I had to offer. They felt that I was on their side and listening to them.

I'm surprised you were officially encouraged to do that. One of my co-workers at the library tends to do the same thing, though I'm pretty sure it's just her nature and not the result of customer service training elsewhere. I can see how it could help with some customers, but with a lot of our patrons it just encourages them to keep going on and on about their complaints because they've found a sympathetic ear.

Well, the point is to try to resolve the problem and get them on their way, not to let them go on and on about whatever is bothering them. You've got to gracefully stop them at some point.

WillyNilly

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Re: The Great Bag Debate....(no I do not want to debate it.....)
« Reply #18 on: August 13, 2012, 01:37:24 PM »
Well first of all I hate the idea of a bag penalty instead of a no bag incentive - Whole Foods for example gives you 10 cents off for every bag you don't need from them, so a small grocery trip is a dime, but a bigger shop could be 50 cents off.  Its only a few cents but I never take their bag, even if it means groceries in my purse!

But the situation at hand, I think just a bit of sympathy, a solution and a smile are the way to go: "yes I agree, its is an unfortunate policy, but its up to management not me.  If you'd like I can get you a manager to complain to.  Also, just FYI for just a few cents more we sell re-usable bags so you won't get caught next time.  Thanks so much for your business, have a great day."

bopper

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Re: The Great Bag Debate....(no I do not want to debate it.....)
« Reply #19 on: August 13, 2012, 02:04:09 PM »
I laugh at this because I had to deal with it when we moved to Germany from the USA.  Fairly quickly we caught on that it was bring yoru bags or pay up for plastic ones!

Sirius

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Re: The Great Bag Debate....(no I do not want to debate it.....)
« Reply #20 on: August 14, 2012, 04:52:35 PM »
If it isn't posted that bags cost 5 cents, then I think the customers have a legitimate complaint.  I carry my own bags because I've got some nifty nylon ones that can be folded small enough to fit in a coin purse, but sometimes my purchases outstrip my bags. 

JenJay

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Re: The Great Bag Debate....(no I do not want to debate it.....)
« Reply #21 on: August 17, 2012, 09:21:37 PM »
My go-to response with angry customers was "I'm sorry for the inconvenience. I wish corporate would consult me before they make decisions, but they don't (big smile). You're welcome to fill out a comment card if you'd like, or I can page the manager." Usually they'll grumble "Oh never mind!" and leave. Occasionally they want the card and/or manager. Either way I'm off the hook and back to work.  ;)

gmatoy

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Re: The Great Bag Debate....(no I do not want to debate it.....)
« Reply #22 on: August 18, 2012, 04:19:41 AM »
So how many customers bring in plastic bags from the competitors' stores (complete with their logo) to use?  >:D

That made me laugh! And remember that, when I used to shop at Macy's and then go to Gimble's, Gimble's used to always offer me a shopping bag to carry my purchases in. DH had to explain to me that it wasn't just that they were nice, it was so it looked like I had found what I was looking for in their store!

Charliebug

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Re: The Great Bag Debate....(no I do not want to debate it.....)
« Reply #23 on: August 18, 2012, 01:49:44 PM »
So how many customers bring in plastic bags from the competitors' stores (complete with their logo) to use?  >:D

That made me laugh! And remember that, when I used to shop at Macy's and then go to Gimble's, Gimble's used to always offer me a shopping bag to carry my purchases in. DH had to explain to me that it wasn't just that they were nice, it was so it looked like I had found what I was looking for in their store!


Actually most of the bags people bring in are from other stores...and we don't mind one bit  ;D

Cleargleam

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Re: The Great Bag Debate....(no I do not want to debate it.....)
« Reply #24 on: August 18, 2012, 02:37:01 PM »
So how many customers bring in plastic bags from the competitors' stores (complete with their logo) to use?  >:D

That made me laugh! And remember that, when I used to shop at Macy's and then go to Gimble's, Gimble's used to always offer me a shopping bag to carry my purchases in. DH had to explain to me that it wasn't just that they were nice, it was so it looked like I had found what I was looking for in their store!


Actually most of the bags people bring in are from other stores...and we don't mind one bit  ;D

Here, I may have paper bags from any number of stores when I go grocery (or other) shopping - I have never had a checker care beyond being glad the bag question wasn't an issue.

Sirius

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Re: The Great Bag Debate....(no I do not want to debate it.....)
« Reply #25 on: August 18, 2012, 02:58:55 PM »
I had one checker tell me it was "store policy" that he couldn't give me the 5 cent discount per bag on any bag that wasn't one of theirs.  Since I use homemade bags this didn't go over very well with me, so the next time I came in I sought out the floor manager and asked.  They were stunned that a cashier would tell a customer something like that, and said they would reiterate what the 5 cent discount per bag covered.  I've never had that come up again, and I've shopped at that store at least once a week since, although I've never seen that cashier again. 

At a different grocery store, a cashier told me that that store had never given a 5 cent per bag discount for bringing in my own bag when I asked about it (and also acted as though I was trying to rip the store off by even suggesting it.)  Since it was only one bag I didn't push it, but the next time I came in I went to the cashier I usually went to, and she told me that what I'd been told was wrong, that the store most certainly did give a 5 cent per bag discount. 

(I've gotten mostly positive comments on my homemade bags, usually questions as to where I got them or asking if they can be washed in a washing machine, which they can.  Makes me wonder if I should go into business.)

KenveeB

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Re: The Great Bag Debate....(no I do not want to debate it.....)
« Reply #26 on: August 18, 2012, 03:21:55 PM »
So how many customers bring in plastic bags from the competitors' stores (complete with their logo) to use?  >:D

That made me laugh! And remember that, when I used to shop at Macy's and then go to Gimble's, Gimble's used to always offer me a shopping bag to carry my purchases in. DH had to explain to me that it wasn't just that they were nice, it was so it looked like I had found what I was looking for in their store!


Actually most of the bags people bring in are from other stores...and we don't mind one bit  ;D

Here, I may have paper bags from any number of stores when I go grocery (or other) shopping - I have never had a checker care beyond being glad the bag question wasn't an issue.

I always figured a store would rather have me buying from them but using the other guy's bag than using their bag somewhere else! :) 

My grocery reuseables don't have any store logo on them, so it never comes up. They're just plain purple for the regular bags, and plain black for the insulated ones. (From Flylady. :)) I only have one logo bag, which is a Target bag that folds up in a neat little pouch, so I keep it in my purse for random purchases.

ClaireC79

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Re: The Great Bag Debate....(no I do not want to debate it.....)
« Reply #27 on: August 18, 2012, 04:41:47 PM »
When the Wales wide policy came in most of the supermarkets had posters up reminding people with pictures of bags from their competitors

Slartibartfast

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Re: The Great Bag Debate....(no I do not want to debate it.....)
« Reply #28 on: August 19, 2012, 12:53:50 AM »
Most people much prefer paying an extra $0.10 in inflated prices and then getting $0.10 off for bringing their bags rather than having to buy the bags at the checkout . . . it comes out the same way, but in one instance you feel clever for saving money and in the other you feel ripped off for having to pay extra  :P 

Charliebug

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Re: The Great Bag Debate....(no I do not want to debate it.....)
« Reply #29 on: August 19, 2012, 02:52:24 PM »
But you see, you don't have to pay extra- there are many choices here. You can take all of your groceries out to your car in the cart and pack them in the car (no bags), you can bring your own bags, you can carry your smaller purchases in your purse and in your arms, you can make your kids carry stuff. Nobody is forcing you (general you) to purchase plastic bags :) This is not a conspiracy to bilk the customer...I promise!  ;D