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Thread: Bad customer experiences. AIB bad restaurant experiences

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    Chairman of the bored Maister's avatar
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    Bad customer experiences. AIB bad restaurant experiences

    Hab brought up a good point. We've all gotten poor service at some point at a restaurant or other service establishment, but this is a two way street - there are probably just as many nightmare customer stories as there are nightmare waitress tales. Back in college, one of my old housemates worked as a waitress and used to tell us these horror stories about Denny's and this other 24 cafe she worked at. She was rather buxom and had several instances where male customers would make spectacularly rude comments about this fact or even paw her without provocation. Other memorables would be the 2 am students-leaving-the-bar crowd which would on occasion beef all over the table, booth, or once even on her shoes. It sounded like hardly a day would go by where someone wouldn't ditch without leaving a tip or paying the bill - even though there were no apparent problems with the food or service.

    I'm guessing she had it worse than most just because of the quality of restaurant she was working and also that it was a college town. Maybe someone who's waited tables can confirm.

    Anywho, I'm sure lots of us have worked retail at some point and have our supply of nightmare customer stories. Let's hear 'em.
    People will miss that it once meant something to be Southern or Midwestern. It doesn't mean much now, except for the climate. The question, “Where are you from?” doesn't lead to anything odd or interesting. They live somewhere near a Gap store, and what else do you need to know? - Garrison Keillor

  2. #2
    Cyburbian clare2582's avatar
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    I've never worked in a restaurant, but as a cashier in a grocery store.
    I've had people call me names, comment on the speed of my service, and just be mean in general. My favorite scenario: A customer tried to use a coupon that was not for an item they bought. I pointed that out. She argued with me, I remained calm. She proceeded to ball up the coupon and throw it at me.
    CHARMING.
    I hope she feels good about herself!

  3. #3
    moderator in moderation Suburb Repairman's avatar
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    I had a real winner come in once to the pizza place a worked at demanding his money back loudly and cussing up a storm in front of our sit-down customers with several kids. He said that he ordered a supreme without onions. I was initially receptive and he gave me the pizza. I openned the box and there was only one slice left. I became very skeptical and asked him why it took nine slices to determine that the pizza had onions and wasn't supposed to. He became even more irate, beginning to irritate many of the customers in the restaurant. It got worse when I showed him the ticket that indicated a supreme pizza with onions. He tried to say that the waitress got it wrong. I was still skeptical, so I pulled the phone recording of the order (some of us really do record for quality assurance). Sure enough, the recording clearly stated that he wanted a supreme pizza and said nothing about the onions, even when the waitress asked. I played the recording loud enough for most of the restaurant patrons to hear. I then smiled, pointed at the sign that said we had the right to refuse service to anyone, and told him he was no longer welcome at the restaurant. He then threw the pizza box at me a stormed out the door. When you're the only pizza joint in the city, you can do things like that without fear of consequences.

    Yeah, I was a bit of a dickhead. But I was a dickhead that was right. I got several comments from customers as they left following that little event that were impressed that I didn't just cave in. That night we had the highest tip-customer ratio for the entire year excluding Super Bowl Sunday.

    "Oh, that is all well and good, but, voice or no voice, the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is tell them they are being attacked and denounce the pacifists for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger. It works the same way in any country."

    - Herman Göring at the Nuremburg trials (thoughts on democracy)

  4. #4
    Cyburbian Seabishop's avatar
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    I used to work at a department store. The cops would have to be called every so often over irate customers. Most of the customers with normal complaints were right because the store sucked. People would ask me for sneakers 10 times before I had a pair in their size.

    When I worked in the sports department I helped a mom and her 4 year old son get ice skates. When the mom took the skates out of the box the kid yelled "Mom, chop his head off! Chop his head off!"

  5. #5
          Downtown's avatar
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    Worked in retail and in food service. I never really had any horror stories, but it is just the everyday suckiness of people that eventually eats your soul.

    Although, as a waitress in the local Greek diner in our college town, I had a woman ask me, after her food arrived "Why didn't you tell me the food was going to be so greasy! I wouldn't have ordered this if I'd had known!"

  6. #6
    Cyburbian boiker's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by clare2582
    I've never worked in a restaurant, but as a cashier in a grocery store.
    I've had people call me names, comment on the speed of my service, and just be mean in general. My favorite scenario: A customer tried to use a coupon that was not for an item they bought. I pointed that out. She argued with me, I remained calm. She proceeded to ball up the coupon and throw it at me.
    CHARMING.
    I hope she feels good about herself!
    funny thing I recently learned. Most of the time, the prodcut shown on the coupon is a suggestion for what can be bought with the coupon. My wife found a website where you can enter a coupon code and it lists all that brands items the coupon is good for. It's how the coupon queens do it.

    my story is a great one. A customer caused quite a ruckus at the returns counter. It seems that the employee and 2 managers indicated they could not accept the return. After a swearing fit and a claim that he has spent $5,000 here in the last year and won't shop here again, he left the store. It turns out he had admitted he purchased the item at a different chain store and tried to return it to the chain I worked at. Also, he had no reciept, bought it 4 months ago, and it was an item that we do not carry!
    Dude, I'm cheesing so hard right now.

  7. #7
    Cyburbian
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    My favorites were always the ladies who pulled up in front of the used bookstore where I worked in their Lincolns and Caddies, stepped out dripping in furs and jewels, and demanded a senior citizen's discount. On a $1.50 Danielle Steele paperback.
    Or the women who would buy a suit--full ensemble, including shirt, shoes, and accessories, at the fancy clothing store I worked at for a while. Generally, our suspicions were aroused when someone bought the whole set, because a) they are't cheap, esp. in that store, and b) experience had shown us that 4 times out of 5, the whole thing would come back a week later, slightly wrinkled and smelling of perfume. I was always tempted to say, "So, guess the job interview didn't go so well, eh?" but always chickened out at the last minute.
    I don't dream. I plan.

  8. #8
    Cyburbian Greenescapist's avatar
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    I worked at an ice cream shop when I was in college. One lazy summer afternoon, this scantily clad woman and a gruff man come in to order sundaes. They had nasty looks on their faces. My perky coworker served them. They told her they wanted everything on their sundaes.

    When the ice cream was placed on the counter and we rang them up, the lady customer picked up the heavy sundae and screamed at my coworker, "I don't like marshmallow, you bitch. How could you do this to me?" We were dumbfounded. Then the couple took a few steps back to leave the shop. The nasty lady then turned around and came charging back to the counter. She took the large sundae in her hand and flung it right at my coworkers head! "How do you like that, you bitch?" My coworker burst out into tears.

  9. #9
    When I worked as a professional mover, we had a driver nicknamed *crash* for a habit of bumping and scraping various moving/stopped objects. Nothing serious, but there was enough to attach the *crash* label.

    Now, we didn't use his nickname around the customers because we discovered it had a tendency to put them ill-at-ease. Go figure

    Crash and my older brother loaded a COD shipment for Florida. The truck was completely full of household goods -- there was barely room to shut the door.
    South of DC on I-95 there's a long hill with a toll booth at the bottom (if you see what's coming, you must not be a highway engineer.... ). *Crash* upshifts as he tops the hill and starts down. Fast then faster. He tries to down shift. Uh uh, ain't gonna happen. He finds a tractor trailer queued for the toll booth and targets it rather than a passenger vehicle. Brakes. Squeal. Skid. Boom.

    Nobody's hurt. The tractor trailer he hit was an egg truck. Not an egg broken! Now the front of *crash's* truck is rumpled like an expandable folder. Around the back they go and open the doors. There's now 6 feet of floor space where once there was furniture and household goods. We dispatch another driver to off-load the goods and re-load them on a new truck.

    Viola, the Sunshine State. "Hey, you're not my driver and that's not my truck. What's going on?" You owe $4,500 certified check, money order or cash. "I'm not paying nothing till you tell me what's happened." $4,500 before delivery. "I'm calling the cops". Sure enough, about 45 minutes later a cruiser pulls up.

    The situation is explained to the officer by the customer. In a loud and annoying voice. The replacement driver politely informs the officer that the fee is $4,500 COD for the services and if the payment is not received 1) the customer isn't getting his goods and 2) he has no insurance. The cop advises the customer to pay and after some discussion the cop agrees to see what's happened. He pays cash and the doors open and everything's a wreck. Boxes that should measure 18" are more like 12". Every china carton rattles from spent glassware. Just about every stick of furniture is damaged. They guy goes ballistic. He wants to know where such and such box is "cause that's where I got my gun and I'm gonna kill you M-Fer."

    Turns out that was a bad thing to say. The cop promptly cuffed him, miranda-ed him and took him for a ride. What remained of the furniture was placed neatly inside the apartment and the driver dead-headed back up north.

    In the end, his mover's insurance and our insurance company settled for a hefty sum. *crash* retired, my brother became a sports writer and I decided carrying furniture was in my past. I know not of the customer.
    On pitching to Stan Musial:
    "Once he timed your fastball, your infielders were in jeopardy."
    Warren Spahn

  10. #10

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    Four days and probably an hour total listening to bad "Hits of the 80s" on hold while waiting for some poor college graduate in Bangalore to find an answer is one of the main reasons I am no longer an ATT customer.

  11. #11
    Cyburbian jsk1983's avatar
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    I worked as a cashier at a local supermarket for the past three summers. Occasionally we would get people who decided that they would pay for their groceries with a homemade check. These were inevitably poorly made and were obviously fake. Why someone would bother to go to the trouble of making a check when apparently they had never seen one before in their life baffles me. These people always tended to buy high ticket items, it seems crab legs were particulary popular, and it was obvious that they didn't have the money to be buying such items. Then of course they would act all surprised that I couldn't take the check.

  12. #12
         
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    Quote Originally posted by Greenescapist
    I worked at an ice cream shop when I was in college. One lazy summer afternoon, this scantily clad woman and a gruff man come in to order sundaes. They had nasty looks on their faces. My perky coworker served them. They told her they wanted everything on their sundaes.

    When the ice cream was placed on the counter and we rang them up, the lady customer picked up the heavy sundae and screamed at my coworker, "I don't like marshmallow, you bitch. How could you do this to me?" We were dumbfounded. Then the couple took a few steps back to leave the shop. The nasty lady then turned around and came charging back to the counter. She took the large sundae in her hand and flung it right at my coworkers head! "How do you like that, you bitch?" My coworker burst out into tears.
    I know this isnt supposed all that funny but I am crackng up at the thought of this happening...

  13. #13
    Cyburbian Plus Zoning Goddess's avatar
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    I worked 2 summers as a waitress at a Pizza Hut. It was across the street from a well-known car dealership. The (wealthy) owner would come over to have pizza for lunch once or twice a week. His idea of a big tip was maybe a quarter. Guess that's why he still had so much money...

  14. #14
    Cyburbian Floridays's avatar
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    Can't think of anything horrific but then again, I tended bar to put myself through school so I've spent lots of the time in the restaurant biz.

    There was a big fountain in the middle of one place that I worked, and some of the waiters (all ruggers) were kinda crazy...if they got a shabby tip, they'd throw the coins in the fountain in front of their customer as they were leaving.

    I also worked with a fellow female bartender who had the BIGGEST attitude problem. She'd slam a cocktail napkin down on the bar, put her hands on her hips and say, "whaddya want." No smile, no nothing. A real be-yotch. We nicknamed her "Weezer" after the character in Steel Magnolias.

  15. #15
    Cyburbian clare2582's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by boiker
    funny thing I recently learned. Most of the time, the prodcut shown on the coupon is a suggestion for what can be bought with the coupon. My wife found a website where you can enter a coupon code and it lists all that brands items the coupon is good for. It's how the coupon queens do it.

    my story is a great one. A customer caused quite a ruckus at the returns counter. It seems that the employee and 2 managers indicated they could not accept the return. After a swearing fit and a claim that he has spent $5,000 here in the last year and won't shop here again, he left the store. It turns out he had admitted he purchased the item at a different chain store and tried to return it to the chain I worked at. Also, he had no reciept, bought it 4 months ago, and it was an item that we do not carry!
    It doesn't work if the coupon is for "BRAND X" and they have "BRAND 123", or if its save $1 on two, and they only have one! Try explaining that one to irate menopausal women!

  16. #16
    Cyburbian jsk1983's avatar
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    "It doesn't work if the coupon is for "BRAND X" and they have "BRAND 123", or if its save $1 on two, and they only have one! Try explaining that one to irate menopausal women!" -Clare2582

    The thing is most cashiers arent that picky. When a customer buys a bunch of groceries it is kind of hard for the cashier to remember if they bought the right product(s). The regsiter would reject coupons if the purchase was not made, but it also rejected coupons when the customer had bought the right item. Thus if the cashier doesn't remember they would have to go back and check which of course takes time, and of course the cashier may just not care that much.
    Of course if you ask the customer they would often times say they bought it when they clearly hadn't. Sometimes they were just hadn't read it very carefully, many coupons today tend to be quite specific, and other times they were just trying to get away with something. There would always be the ones who would buy 'trial size' and then use a coupon for economy size and so on.

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