Monday, May 2, 2011

Me and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Target Experience

photo credit

This unfortunate event happened at the WEST Green Bay Target Greatland store, on Cormier Rd. Sorry that I didn't clarify that. I have had many people ask me, so I thought I would add that in here :)

Sitting here and thinking about my HORRIBLE trip to Target, earlier today...
I could have titled this post a hundred different things.
Like, "Super Horrible Customer Service at Target" or "Shopping at Target = NIGHTMARE" or even,
"Want to feel like you are using coupons illegally and should be carted off to jail? Then, shop at the Target Greatland store in WEST Green Bay, WI!"

My simple little 1 hour shopping trip at Target turned into a nightmare this morning.
Well, grab a cup of coffee or your favorite beverage, get cozy, sit back and enjoy my little horror story of a stay at home mom's journey to save her family money at Target.
(I really think this should be made into a Lifetime Movie...)

First let me remind you all that I always use my coupons properly; use them on the correct items, the correct size items, etc...

I will TRY to make this story as SHORT as possible, and if you have ANY questions about my experience or ANYTHING, please contact me :)

I head off to Target, this morning, around 10 am.

I want to check out what other options are available for the Charmin/Bounty/Tide $5 Gift Card offer...and I have a bunch of Target Coupon/Manufacturer Coupons to stack for stuff we need around the house.

I check the prices on the Nivea Body Wash and see that the 8.4 oz. Body Wash is priced at $2.54.
I still have some of the $3 off Nivea Body Wash coupons left. SO, I grab 6 of them. (and no, I DID NOT clear the shelf...still plenty there)


I head over to the Travel size section and see that the Visine is on sale for $1.79.
I still have 3 of the $2 off ANY Visine coupons that I can use!

I start to head over to the checkout and do ONE LAST inventory on the items in my cart and match them up to the CORRECT coupons I have in my binder. I put them in order with the Target store coupons AFTER the manufacturer coupons and get in line to checkout.
The cashier starts scanning and about 10 items into my order, she asks if I have any coupons. I say yes and she asks to see them.
Here, I am thinking...Ummmm...OK...that's odd...??
SO, thinking nothing more, I hand them over. She looks through them and says, "We cannot take these coupons because your body wash is ringing up at $2.54 and the coupon is for $3, and then the Visine is on sale for $1.79 and your coupon is for $2...It's not right for me to accept these coupons."

Not right? What??
I then ask what the issue is, if this is a new policy because I am here pretty much EVERY week and sometimes use coupons on sale items that ring up less than what the coupon amount is and I have NEVER had a problem before.
She then says, "This isn't a new policy, it has always been like this."

In my head I am thinking BULL$#&@. NO WAY. This MUST be new because this Target has been SO coupon friendly to me. Really...what the heck went wrong here??
OH, and here is when my adrenaline starts acting up on me and I start shaking and getting nervous.
I don't know WHY I get like that. I was NOT doing anything wrong.

Then a manager (one I have NEVER seen at this Target before) comes over and says NO, that they cannot take those coupons.
I ask when the policy changed and she kind of glared at me and said it never has. It's not a new policy.
I then ask them to adjust the coupon down and the cashier says that they have NEVER been allowed to do that and she has NO idea what I am talking about.

Do you guys honestly think I would make all of this stuff up so that you can make me look like an idiot in front of others???
I don't think so.

(oh yea...AND I didn't have my Target Coupon Policy on me, where it CLEARLY STATES  "Coupon amount may be reduced if it exceeds the value of the item after other discounts or coupons are applied")

So, rather than cause a scene, I tell them fine...take all of the Nivea and Visine off my order.
I proceed to dig every item out of my bags.
And there is a HUGE line gathering behind me and people are obviously getting upset...(either with me or them, I was too afraid to ask :)

The cashier continues to scan my coupons.

With every new coupon, she looks at it, looks at me and asks.."Did you get this exact item?"

She asks me this same question with  EVERY. SINGLE. COUPON.
She asks me this BEFORE she even scans it.
(See...I really think the misuse of coupons on the April 6 Extreme Couponing show REALLY has stores freaking out...NOT a good thing for us coupon users, and soooo not good for me today...)

The cashier tells me my total and I pay and leave the line.

I have read on other blogs that if you have an issue with coupons at Target, you should ALWAYS call them before you leave the store.
SO, I stop at the Cafe and call Target Corporate at 1.800.440.0680.

Remember...I am just fuming now because I was just made to look HORRIBLE in front of the other customers. I know, you shouldn't care what other people think, but when people aren't educated on the use of coupons, they COULD think that I was trying to rip off the store, which I WAS NOT DOING!
DO the cashiers or others NOT realize that the store DOES get reimbursed for every coupon PLUS an extra $0.08? Sorry Mr. or Ms. Cashier. That money does NOT come out of YOUR The store you work for DOES get their money back from the manufacturer.

The rep. on the phone listened to me and said that I can't use coupons that aren't meant for a different product.
Really? Hmmm....I had NO idea! (sarcasm)
And this was NOT what I was calling about. I obviously know how to use coupons...

I go on to explain FURTHER that I had the correct items with the correct coupons.  
The cashier wouldn't even try to scan my coupons.
The Corporate rep. then said that they should have taken my coupons BUT I am not allowed to be given cash back and that if the coupon amount is for MORE than the product, that the remaining amount will be taken off of my total order.
(Yes, THANK YOU. I already knew

He went on to give me a reference number and asked me to go to the Customer Service area and ask them to call them back with that reference number.

SO, I take all of my items to my van, so I can TRY to settle down a little more, and re-enter the store.

I explain to the Customer Service rep. (in the store) my situation and she lays out my coupons and finds the items and says that the cashier SHOULD have taken my coupons because they are obviously for the correct products. But just to be safe, she calls Corporate and gives them the reference number.
And whaddya' know. They agree with me!!!
SO, she rings up my order and then I see the manager that wouldn't let me use the coupons, walk over.
She looks at me, looks at the items on the counter and says, "Nope. We cannot take HER coupons."
(and yes, she did say it like that...HER...)

The Customer Service rep. then went on to say that I called Corporate as did she and they said that they CAN accept them, but it is really up to the head manager (or GSTL, GTSL or whatever they are called).
At this point, I am like...SERIOUSLY? THEY NEVER said that to me! And why didn't the Customer Service rep. TELL ME that they said THAT to her??? this point, I was ready to say FORGET IT and grab my coupons and walk out.

A nasty, NASTY time wasting, energy wasting NIGHTMARE.

At that moment I say..."OK. I write a blog about coupons and how to use them properly and about saving money, for the Green Bay area. I have plenty of readers that would like to know what the bottom line is on this policy..."

The Customer Service rep. smiles and asks what the blog is called, so I tell her :)

I owe it to all of you to find out WHAT coupons we can or can't use on what products, know what I mean?
ANYWAY...I then ask if this will happen EVERY TIME I use a coupon that has a value of more than what the product is (correct item=correct coupon) and they say YES!
OK. I have to laugh right now...LOL....LOL.
SO, they are outright telling me that using coupons at Target is NOW a hassle.
The cashiers will not accept the coupons and are told NOT to try and scan them either. AND that the final decision is up to the lead manager on duty at that time.
And what if this manager is NOT coupon friendly? What if this manager is having a craptastic day?

Seriously??? So, should I then toss out YOUR Corporate Coupon Policy?

Man, Target. JUST when I was so loving do this to me...

I apologize to all of you. This turned into ONE LONG post and I didn't intend for it to be this long. BUT I do think it's MY JOB to report back to you, my readers, as to what is going on with the stores that we frequent.

Please, leave a comment or contact me if you have a similar story or just want to be heard :)

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  1. Holy Crap! That is BULLSH$T! So they take the word of the manager and not corporate? I was thinking about going to Target with my coupons for the first time today but not anymore! I'll stick to Walgreens and Walmart, or Copps or Pick N Save who doubles coupons every Wed and Sat up to 5 coupons.
    This weekend I went to Walgreens with a TON of coupons, and it took FOREVER to scan all my items and coupons. The checkout lady was SO NICE and was talking to me the whole time about how I cut and save every week. By the time I was done there were 10 people behind me,& the lady closest to me giving me dirty looks. I felt like sticking out my tounge but I am 36, so I just shot a dirty look back. The check out lady told people to go to the beauty section so they wouldn't have to wait but they all ignored her so she was laughing. What made my day when I was walking out of the store with TWO carts full of toilet paper and other good stuff a little girl about 6 screamed really loud at me saying "You saved alot of money lady"! And I said "yes I did isn't it great!"

  2. That sounds absolutely horrible! I do understand your frusteration, and whatever happened to the customer is always right? I can just imagine your pain and I don't know if I could have been so patient as you were! Good job though, keep up the good work!

  3. Wow, if I lived in your area I would totally boycott this store :( I hope you have more near you! Maybe they'll eventually lose enough business that they'll stop being so ridiculous about things. I agree, I hate that Extreme Couponing show...nothing but bad stuff coming from it for legit couponers.

  4. Ya know...and any other day, I would have just said...whatever and walked out. BUT I am just SICK of stores changing their policies overnight and the employees not being on the same page with the coporate policies.
    AND it is my duty to give all of you the correct information about stores and coupons. I never did get a bottom line answer about the policy with them...only that it is up to the manager. THAT is THE WORST policy ever, then, in my opinion. Because, like I said...if that manager isn't educated on coupons or having a cruddy day...they can pass on that cruddiness to me or you, the customer. Being a store manager doesn't automatically make you Mr. or Mrs. Nice Guy or Gal. They are people, too, and it's VERY hard to leave your bad attitude at the door when you get to work. just stinks because I KNEW I WAS RIGHT.
    You just have to fight for it I guess. Shouldn't have to...but the people who misuse coupons are giving people like me a bad rep :(

  5. My Target seems to be like this with overage coupons as well. I don't even try to use them now there.

    I was also recently told that they won't take Smart Source coupons because they don't have the yellow dots behind the expiration date like the ones.

  6. This is sad, espeically seeing as Walmart is adjusting their policy for the better. I guess Target is trying to lose popularity, because that is some of the crappiest service I have ever heard. The policy should not be left to the manager, that is why people work in customer service at the corporate level, to avoid this hassle. I am sorry you had to go through that!

  7. Mary Jo you poor thing! I would've been sweating and going crazy in there, I get so flustered when faced with problems like that. Luckily I've never come across something that bad. Lesson there for us other couponers, take the policies huh. I would write a letter to corporate, do you remember the manager's name? Explain to them how the manager made you feel in front of other customers too, they could've at least gone somewhere less conspicuous to talk about it. You are right, the extreme couponers have given us honest folk a bad name. Hope everyone else has better luck at Tg!

  8. I had the same issue there about 2 weeks ago. Again, with the Visine coupons. Well, I ran over to the east side Target, which I NEVER go to b/c the prices are higher, low and behold, they had the Visine at $1.79 and I had 2 Q's for it, I also had the Q's for the Allegra D. I got 2 of each and a soda. They never blinked an eye that I got all of it for about $1.90 with tax! I think I might be going to that store from now on. The West side has become a pain in my behind.


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