I was at a local Taco Bell the other day to buy lunch. The drive through line was pretty long, so I parked and walked inside. There was hardly anybody inside, and the small crew was working hard to fulfill the drive through orders to keep the traffic line moving.
The woman working the window soon noticed me standing at the counter, and took my order. After paying, I stepped to the side to wait for my order. As I stood watching the food preparations, another customer entered and stood at the counter. The lady at the window turned and asked if she could help him.
He told her he had just been in the drive through and she gave him the wrong change. He said that she had given him back all the money in change that he had given her to pay for his meal. So he parked and came in to pay for his meal.
The woman behind the counter did not initially get it, so the guy had to repeat himself that he wanted to pay the proper amount for his meal. The woman then understood, took his money, and smiled from ear to ear.
I spoke up to the person paying for his meal, and told him he had just made my day. He asked if I worked there, and I said, “Nope. But I am happy to meet an honest man.”
I hardly ever pay for things with cash anymore, credit cards are much easier, but when I used to pay with cash, I occasionally received the incorrect change and would have to correct the cashier. It seems like at least 50% of the time, the cashiers would err by giving me too much money in change. And almost every time they would be defensive about not making a mistake until I showed them that they gave me too much change and I was trying to give the extra money back.
I distinctly recall one instance in a grocery store where I gave a cashier $10 and expected around $6 in change. The cashier handed me $16 in change! The cashier had already moved on to the next customer when I stated that she had given me too much money. At first she looked annoyed until I explained that I had only given her a $10 bill, and not a $20, so I wanted her to take back the extra $10. As soon as she understood, she took the $10, smiled, and gave me a big “Thank You!”
I always check that I am charged what I expect at the store, laser scanners often make mistakes, and I always count my change if paying with cash.
Have you ever received excess change that you’ve given back?