Pet Peeve...store discount cards
Moms View Message Board: General Discussion: Archive April 2006:
Pet Peeve...store discount cards
I HATE them.
Last week at my grocers, I purchased a flank steak and boneless breast of chix. Both were buy one get one free with card. (great color, not old, etc).
Well, the cashier didn't ask for my card, so I forgot, of course. Driving home I remembered that she didn't take off the $14. The next day I brought my receipt and card and the store refunded my money. No big deal....but a huge pain in the butt!
Today, I only went in the store for detergent. I bought the Tide HE. $7.99 but $5.99 with card. Again the cashier didn't ask for my card, I forgot. I get out to my car then remember. I had to go back in the store, wait in the line for my $2.00.
I think these cards are a huge pain in the butt. Then if the cashier does remember to ask you for your card and you don't have one, they swipe a generic one. CVS does this all of the time.
It drives me bananas!
I hate them too, so I do not shop at those stores unless it's a really good sale on something and then I tell them to swipe the managers card. If they won't, I leave.
The Food Lion and Martin's are really good around here about asking for your card (I keep it on my key chain rather than in my wallet). In fact, if you don't have yours they will use a store one that's on or near their register.
I forgot one time at the Food Lion (new girl) and I went down the next day. Huge bill was over $150. Told the manager what happened (they are really nice here) and she asked if I could let the receipt there and pick it up the next day. They had to figure it out by hand. I felt really stupid. I came back and she refunded me over $40. She never complained and was really nice about it.
Like I said, I keep mine on the keychain, otherwise, I'd never remember.
I only have cards for Winn Dixie and CVS and I keep them right next to my debit card, but 99% of the time the cashiers ask for them.
Occasionally I go to Save-a-center, and I don't have a card there anymore (too lazy I guess), and they always ask me for my card.
Our store won't swipe the generic cards anymore, but the cashiers are REALLY good about asking if you have a saver card. A few times I have forgotten, but it never occurred to me to go back to get my money back. My last visit to the store, I saved $3.30!
I hate them too and rarely shop at the stores where it is required. Yes, I realize it is like a coupon and you won't get the discount unless you have it. But if the cashier is supposed to ask you for it or they will swipe the manager's card then they are trying to give you the discount so what is the point in having the card at all? I just think that it is a huge pain in the rumpus.
I always automatically give the cashier my courtesy card when checking out, even when just buying a few items. Guess I'm weird! LOL!
There was a store here that used to have discount cards, but it didn't go over well, so they quit. They are supposed to generate customer loyalty, but I think you are right, they generally succeed in driving people away as well.
My store always asks for my card and will swipe a generic if I don't have it, but not automatically.
I love those cards, LOL! I've come out with almost a $70 savings in one shopping trip using a store card.
Many have little cards to put on your keychain. When you put your keys on the counter, the cashier just takes the keys and swipes the card without even asking.
It really is just a matter of getting into the habit of taking it out.
I have the same problem with coupons. I always forget I have them unitl I'm out of the store. Now, I wrap them around my courtesy card so I don't forget.
Well, the store wants to make money, so putting the responsibility on the shopper helps them make money. They can draw you in by offering great savings by using the cards, and then if you forget to use them, and you don't come back for a refund, they've made extra money. There's nothing at all wrong with it, in my opinion. They are offering you these free cards (to get coupons you usually have to BUY the newspaper) to get good savings on food and other items. It's up to you to consider it important enough to remember about it. Why don't you write 'use card' on your shopping list? My store doesn't ask for the card either, but I always remember it. It's right there in my wallet with the credit card I'm going to need to buy the groceries! If you pay with cash, put it in the area where you keep your cash.
The stores are being nice by offering the savings, and being especially nice by still giving you the discount later on when you remember that you forgot to use your card.
One of the reasons the store wants you to get a discount card is so they can send you advertising in the mail. I have a number of these cards, but I give a made-up address, phone number, etc., because I think it is just none of their business. The other reason is they track your shopping so they know what kinds of ads to send you when they send out special mailings.
What I really hate is when I use my ATM card to pay for my purchase, my name is printed on the receipt and the cashier thanks me by name. I don't want a "personal" thank you - I want privacy. As far as I'm concerned, my name is between me and my bank and is none of the store's business.
I was in Kmart recently and when I swiped my ATM card to pay for my purchase, the machine asked for my zip code. I said no, you don't need my zip code, and the cashier told me the machine couldn't process my purchase without my zip code. I walked out without my purchase, and complained vigorously to Kmart by email. The person responding to the email said if I'd give them my full name, address and phone number, they'd have the proper person respond - I said, look, if I kick up a fuss about a zip code, what makes you think I want to give Kmart my address and phone number. This went back and forth a bit, and then I got an email from the individual store's customer relations person, who said the cashier was wrong, there was a button to push to process my purchase without the zip code, but the cashier hadn't been properly trained. (She also asked for my address to send me a gift card, which I declined, since my complaint had finally been properly answered.)
I remember walking out of RadioShack a couple of times when a cashier would say he had to have my phone number in order to process - are you ready? - a CASH purchase.
I get annoyed that so many businesses want to collect personal information before they take my money. And heaven only knows what they do with the information, or how carefully they protect it from hacking, theft, etc. As far as I'm concerned, the only businesses that need accurate personal information from me are financial institutions that I do business with, my medical providers, pharmacist, and auto repair shop. For the rest of them, I either give no information or phony information.
Can you tell this is a pet peeve???
Ugh, I totally agree!! One time I applied for a discount card and they actually wanted my Social Security #!!! I absolutely declined to provide it and they "decided" to let me have the card anyway. What on earth would the grocery store need with my SSN?? They said it was in case I wanted to withdraw money with my purchases at the register, but really, gimme a break!!!
Ginny, I always give them a made up address too. I do not want my personal info out for public use anymore than it already is.
I guess I am the only one who has no idea what these cards are? lol I am way out of the loop.
Some of the bigger chains have them. They are plastic cards about the size of a credit card. You fill out a form and they give you a card. They then advertise great specials, but you can only get the special price if you get your card swiped.
Ginny, the store I used to work at did that zip code thing a few times, and for some people who didn't prefer to give out their zip, we just entered in all 1's.
The zip thing doesn't bother me as much as the phone #. The zip is just so that the company has an idea of where the people come from who shop there the most. If they get a lot of people from a particular zip that is relatively far away, they might consider opening a store in that zip.
I am typing with a band-aid on my finger- this isn't easy!
Sometimes I wonder if they use these (CVS) to keep track of people buying certain items that can be used for illegal activity. I still use my cards though. We have little ones here that fit on your keychain and that's where all 50 of mine are.
I know that at Kmart if you forget your receipt & need to return something they can use your checking account number or credit card number to look up the purchase. It will bring up every receipt that is on record with that account number.
I give false info too, but forget what number I use & end up giving my mom's number so she gets the savings credit, the stores here send you coupons for every so much spent.
I simply refuse to shop at the stores using the cards. Here they are: Albertsons, Winn dixie, CVS, that is all I can think of. I rarely see a huge price difference between the so called "card savings" compared to other stores prices. I do not like having a wallet full of cards, and have no desire to hand out personal info. I never give out my phone number. I do not make one up. I simply say my number is unlisted. I have had a credit card # stolen and used. Someone stole a check and rewrote it on me too. I rarely write checks anymore because of that. When I do, I write them with a sharpie (cannot be erased like a ballpoint pen). I am overly protective with my information now.
Ginny the zip code thing is so they can track were their costumers are coming from. So they know if they should pay to have their adds placed in the news papers of other counties.. If everyone coming in is local then they don't need to broaden their mailings but if they are getting x amount of people from surrounding counties then it pays to get their names out to those counties to draw those costumers to their stores..
The discount cards are used to track your purchases. Not just the sale items but everything you buy, so that they can use special offers for the things you use to draw you to shop at their stores. I think it is wrong and that a sale should be a sale.. They could always offer the special bonuses/coupons they all give to anyone that will agree to have their shopping tracked.. Instead of forcing us all into a tracking system..
Oh, I know why they do it, Bobbie, but, as you say, I don't want to be forced into a tracking system.
Most grocery stores, where I have shopped anyway, require these "courtesy cards" in order to pay by check or debit card. I purposely don't carry much cash and prefer to pay for a week's worth of groceries by check or debit card. I see the store discounts as an added benefit.
I have never received mailings from my grocery store directly addressed to me. Their fliers are in the newspaper, of which we don't subscribe, or in the free newspapers mailed out to general occupancies.
I don't get grocery store mailings, either. They just put their ads in the paper.
For the most part I just shop at places that I don't have to give that info to or use a card. At Toys R Us, i give them the zip of the local large city.
I used to give my phone # to Toy-r-Us but since it's unlisted, I never got any mail. I even TRIED to get on their mailing list when ds was little, but it never worked.