I keep getting emails from readers about their experiences with “price-scanning mistakes” at the checkout counter. These readers want to share what happened to them, so that we can all be vigilant when shopping.
Here are a few of these emails:
“I have shopped at a popular market since it opened. About a month ago, I bought several varieties of chocolate from the bulk bins. When the cashier rang up my purchase, the amount seemed high. I checked the monitor and noticed that one of the bags of chocolate was rung up four times.
“The cashier immediately apologized and took off the overages and I went on my way. A week or two later, a different cashier, at a different register again rang up an item several times, also chocolate from the bulk bins. This time I called a manager over and again, an apology and the amount was quickly corrected.
“The third time this happened, the manager checked the product codes on the bin and determined that the register was at fault. The register didn’t accept the listed code and the cashier kept ringing up the item without realizing that the register was accepting the dollar amount.
“Now I love chocolate, but $40 for a pound of dark-chocolate-covered cashews, not so much. Had I not been vigilant, had I not reacted immediately, I would have been robbed. As I said, the first time, I accepted the problem as human error. The second time, I began to wonder. The third time … I can’t believe this happened only to me.
“So, notice to customers … check your receipts very carefully.” — Dena
“I liked your article on spotting price-scanning mistakes. One thing that was not mentioned, that occasionally happens to me, is that I would pick an item from the shelf and when paying for it, the price is higher and this was due to someone placing the item at the wrong location.
“It could have been a shopper just putting it in the wrong spot from where they got it or it was stocked in the wrong location. This happens frequently at some popular stores.
“Sometimes, if I am concerned, I take a photo with my cellphone of the product with the price below the product and show it at the cash register.
“At a store, the situation is that they don’t have the correct price as the product matches what the price on the shelf has, but the cash register does not reflect that price. By showing the photo and zooming in, they honor the corrected price.” — Phil
Another scam going around: Someone calls and pretends to be you grandchild “with a bad cold.” Then they say they had an accident and need money.
A reader named Lilly called me and said she didn’t fall for it. She received two calls that her grandson was hurt and needed immediate money for his treatment. Good job Lilly. You did the right thing HANGING UP!
Carmen Caldwell is executive director of Citizens’ Crime Watch of Miami-Dade. Send feedback and news for this column to firstname.lastname@example.org, or call her at 305-470-1670.