Well, I ended up with more than I bargained for when I went to my local VONS store this evening … nI was making a purchase (total of around $75.00), mainly consisting of frozen goods. While I was in the middle of the transaction, my wife calls to tell me that she has just picked up shopping and is heading home. I realize that she has just picked up most of the frozen items that I’m in the process of paying for and ask the casheer to stop the transaction (we only have a small freezer). nThe casheer is polite and apologetically explains that he’s already put the transaction through, but it won’t be a problem to take the items to another check stand to be refunded. So I go over to checkstand N0. 7 … where I meet the unique Mr. Stanley Hodge. nI expain to Mr. Hodge the problem, and ask him for a refund … which he starts to process. He askes for my ‘clubcard number’ … I assume to itentify my return in the computer, which I am more than willing to supply. He then removes all the items to be returned (only the frozen items) from my reciept by scanning them for the credit. All going well thus far … now I’m handed a reciept for the refund amount, with a form at the bottom for me to fill out my name and address. nAs I’m sure many consumers are aware, you are not required by law to fill out such forms … I typically will just enter my name and phone number with no address (I have a tendancy to be added to every mailing list in the land, so try and limit where I issue that information) … besides which, he had already entered my phone number (for my clubcard info) into his register … so they should have all the info they need. nMr Hodge tells me that he ‘won’t process the return without the form filled out’ … to which I remind him that I am under no obligation to do so. His collegue assures him that it is not neccessary for the return, and the money is finally refunded. nNow comes the fun bit. I am handed the return reciept (with a list of all the returned items on it) and then ask for the original reciept. He is unclear as to whether he can give it to me or not, and after I expain that if I no longer have the reciept I will have no proof of purchase of other items on it, he finally agrees to return it to me ‘after I’ve made a copy of it’ … I agree to this, and he leaves (presumably to copy said item). nTen mins later he returns, and tells me he’s not giving me back the original reciept and will not make a copy because I won’t fill out the form … I tell him fine, I’ll fill out the form and he STILL refuses to give me the reciept back! After re-stating that the reciept was needed as it is my proof of purchase he tells me that he can make me a new reciept for just the items that are remaining!! nOK, so understand the logic here?? he now wants to print me a NEW reciept as a cash sale (which he will then have to cancel so his accounting is correct) to give me as proof of purchase. So I will then end up with no reciept for my original credit card transaction (and hence no record of what was purchased and returned for my accounting records) … and then wants to give me a new reciept for a different ammount … which would be void anyway because he would have to cancel it after the reciept was printed!!! … none of this really made any sense. nAny normal store will mark the returned items on your original reciept and return it to you together with the return reciept. I have never heard of anywhere not giving back the original reciept … I thought that any form of proof of purchase such as that was the property of the customer once the transaction has completed. nI asked Mr Hodge several more times to return my reciept and he refused, stating that I needed to take it up with the manager in the morning … then stating (in a very loud manner) that I needed to leave the store!! nI asked him for his business card and he refused. nI asked him for the name of the store manager and he refused.nI asked him for the number of the store … and he told me it was printed on the reciept … when I reminded him (again) that he had my reciept (the store details are not printed on return reciepts) … he then shouted at me and told me to leave. nThankfully a security guard on duty gave me his name and the store number after the incident, and suggested I call the customer service line (which I did). nVONS customer service informed me that their policy is to return the reciept to the customer with the return reciept. They were very good about the situation and very apologetic. Mr Hodge had created such a scene with his shouting and refusal to return my reciept in the store, that another customer who saw his actions came up to me whilst I was speking to the customer service line on the phone to tell me he thought the situation was handeled badly. nJust to make the situation worse, while I was on hold with the customer service line, Mr Hodge decideds he is going to come out of the store and sit outside the entrance with a group of empoyees (I was aty my car parked 300ft away) and starts to have a conversation about me (again speaking loud enough that I can hear from that distance) to his employees!!! nIf this is VONS ‘Giving Their Best’ … I would hate to see them giving their worst … The whole situation may have originally been a small gripe (returning my reciept) … but when you have staff who are left in charge of a supermaket who don’t know how to even handle a basic return, it does make you wonder. nMatthewnLos Angeles, CaliforniaU.S.A.
9860 National Blvd Los Angeles, California U.S.A.