Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Almost Cheated by the Cash Register: A Battery-Charged Story

Cash register tapes can lie, deceive & cheat. Therefore, it's important to speak to the store manager when you need a price check. Those are the lessons I picked up from a recent shopping trip for double-A batteries, which my middle son needed for a project (don't ask). Of course, we were out. Even our life-in-Miami, hurricane-emergency supply drawer was depleted.

So I walked to CVS. Big mistake. Sometimes, that chain has great deals, fabulous deals on merchandise. But not on that specific trip. I thought I had stumbled into a gift shop in the lobby of a South Beach hotel or at a theme park! I was shocked by the prices for a package of AA batteries. Even the no-name brand batteries were a copper-coated fortune.

So I walked to Walgreens, which had batteries that seemed affordable. I found a package for under $3, but when I got to the register, the computer scanned in $6. I approached a manager, who kindly escorted me to the battery section.

The problem: I had picked up one of the store's "last chance" orange-ticket markdown items. Unfortunately, the discounted amount was not yet keyed into the computerized scanning system. So my bargain evaporated under the red beam of an inflated digital scan.

The manager escorted me back to the cash register and told the cashier to manually override the system. I thanked him and recorded another entry for my $2 a Day Savings Challenge.

Full price of the batteries: $5.99

Sale price: $2.79

My savings $3.20

The lesson: Priceless! (Sorry, Mastercard.)


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alexgirl said...

Whoa! This column totally got me hooked. I had no idea batteries could be priced so differently. Well, to my credit, I use rechargeable batteries--woo hoo! But that was awesome. Thanks for the tip.

Tracy said...

I hate it when things don't ring up the right price! This seems to happen to me a lot.

Great blog! Want to exchange links? I already added you to my blogroll, here is my link: http://mymoneystory.blogspot.com/

Mrs. Micah said...

Good job paying attention! That's a big difference. And it's your $2 for a day as well. One thing I love to see is the self-scanner taking off money because I'm using my savings card.

calgirlfinance said...

Good catch. Since I started blogging, I started paying a lot more attention to the register. I've found that the key is to check your receipt before you leave the store.