Things You Should Never Say to a Cashier

When walking up to a register, my cashier said “hello.” I replied with, “Hi, how are you?” After this seemingly run-of-the-mill exchange, they told me I was the first person to ever ask them how they were without them asking the customer first. The lesson here is to be nice to cashiers. While you’re at it, don’t say the following things to cashiers. They’ve heard it all before, many times over.

Do you work here?

Male cashier with customers

Take a moment to determine if a person works at a store. | Noel Hendrickson/iStock/Getty Images

Use your deductive reasoning skills and common sense to determine whether or not a person is a cashier before asking this question aloud. Are they wearing khakis and a vest? Maybe a lanyard and a nametag? Then they probably work at that particular grocery store.

I have a coupon at home

Woman In Grocery Aisle

Don’t use this common phrase. | bowdenimages/iStock/Getty Images

Cashiers know you’re lying. They’ve heard this line before. They’re not naive. Being very nice to your cashier may get you a discount, Time Out says.

I’d like to speak to a manager

Wegmans aisle

See what your cashier can do for you. | Wegmans Food Markets

Probably one of the most dreaded phrases cashiers hear is ‘I’d like to speak to a manager.’ “I know the rules and procedures better than most of them [managers], and they’re just going to repeat the same thing I said,” according to Time Out. Before asking to speak with a manager, talk with your cashier to see how they can help you. Remember to be polite. They’ll be more inclined to help you if they like you.

Nothing at all

Man talking on mobile phone

Don’t talk on your phone while checking out. | Rawpixel Ltd/iStock/Getty Images

Don’t be on the phone while checking out at the register. End your conversation and acknowledge your cashier. Otherwise, you’ll come across as rude. “Hang up your phone and notice that I’m a real person with a real brain, not a robot here to do your bidding,” Time Out says.

No tag, must be free

Woman taking deep frozen food from a freezer

If you put an item without a tag in your cart, it’s not free. |Minerva Studio/iStock/Getty Images

Know that you’re not the first person to crack jokes about an item without tags. You obviously know the item isn’t free. “By the 106,435th time it happened, I was ready to strangle someone,” a Reddit user said. Keep the jokes to a minimum and simply be courteous to your cashier.

Can you open up another register?

cash register

Not everyone can work a register. | iStock/Getty Images

This thought comes to many customers’ minds when they take a look at the long lines of the few opened lanes. I myself have wondered why my local grocery store has so many checkout lanes while only a few are open at a time. Grocery stores can’t have any old employee hop on a checkout lane to address a long line.  “Not every other employee knows how to work a register or should be trusted with several thousand dollars in cash,” Time Out says.

Why is it so expensive?

Hundred dollar bills money

Don’t ask a cashier why an item costs so much. | SARINYAPINNGAM/iStock/Getty Images

Cashiers don’t control the prices of grocery store items. Remember this before asking them why items are expensive. One Reddit user adopted a simple but effective tactic. “I usually just stare at them,” the Reddit user wrote. “ I don’t answer the question. Make them rethink what they’ve asked me,” they added.

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