It's no secret: I pinch pennies. Our family has to pinch pennies in order to survive on my husband's income while I stay home with our kids. So when a retailer repeatedly acts in a way that is corporately irresponsible or unethical, and those actions cost me the pennies I have worked hard to pinch, I feel like I should let those around me know.
Target stores have lost my respect. They will also lose my business.
MULTIPLE TIMES I have gone to Target and been charged more than their advertised price on a particular item. Last time this happened to me, I didn't realize it until I was home and looked at my receipt. It wasn't worth my time, gas money and effort to return to the store and get the price right, but the experience left a bad taste in my mouth. I wrote to Target corporate and told them about my experience. They sent me a form letter back and made no effort to make the wrong right.
Today I was shopping in Target with my two kids. We stopped at the snack bar to get a bite to eat for lunch. As always, I carefully calculated how the three of us could eat for the least amount of money. When the cashier told me the total, it was more than it should have been based on what their huge sign advertised. I brought it to her attention and she said, "Sorry, that's how the register rings it up. I can't do anything about it." I paid the amount and we ate our food.
Afterward, I went to customer service and asked to see a manager. When she came, I told her what had happened and showed her the receipt and how I had been charged more than the sign advertised on all three items I had ordered. I told her that although I do work hard to pinch pennies and even a small mistake like this matters to me, this was more about the principle than the actual amount of money that I had been overcharged. I told her I felt that Target was being deceptive to its customers if they advertised one price but actually charged another.
This Target employee (whom I'm not even sure was a manager) made no effort to make this right. Neither she or the original cashier offered to refund me the small amount that I had been overcharged. She made no apology for the deceptive sign/ charge system in the cash register. She simply told me she would bring it to her supervisor's attention. Somehow I doubt that ever happened.
Is it Target's corporate practice to charge a little more than their signage advertises on a regular basis and hope that no one notices? From my experience, I am starting to feel like this might be a corporate-wide issue. Their lack of willingness to act in good faith with one consumer (me) most likely indicates that similar situations are happening in their hundreds of stores.
Over the past several months, I have become more and more disillusioned with Target because of their rigid return policy and frequent charging mistakes. This disillusionment has now turned to a total lack of respect for this corporation.
In the future, I will be taking my business away from Target whenever possible.
**Update** I received a personal e-mail letter back from Target Corporate saying that they are checking into the pricing issues at my store. I was pleased that they took the time to respond. It seems to me that they should have made some offer or effort to repay me for my time and trouble in some way, but they did not. But at least they personally responded to me!