Monday, March 23, 2015

Why do people think it is okay to be abusive to people price matching or couponing?



I save a lot of money doing couponing and price matching.  Along with the savings comes abuse from other customers and sometimes the cashiers!

Today I had a good and bad experience at Walmart.   I got in line with a very full cart.  You could clearly see I had a lot of stuff.  Lady gets behind me with 6 items and two kids.



I tell her right away; “I am couponing and price matching.  It might be faster if you go through the express checkout right beside us.“
 “No, I don’t mind, I am fine!”
“Okay, just so you know, I have a lot of stuff today”

The cashier was wonderful.  She had no issues with my cart load of things to price match and coupon.  She was fast!  I had a hard time keeping up with her, and I was very organized.  Had my coupons all ready, and all my price matching was clipped in Flipp and she still had me on my toes.  My order went through quickly.

As a side note:

  • I saved about 40% of my order: I spent $104, saved $69.  My order would have been $172.  I probably actually saved more because some of the items were on sale at Walmart and I did not need to price match to save.
  • I had 14 unique items.  Some I had multiples of.  Mostly 2 but did have 5 of one item.
  • 6 of the items were price matched saving me $38.
  • 9 of the items had coupons saving me $31.

We had two issues, both to do with price matching.  She wanted to make sure I could price match my pop and had to call for a customer service manager.  Who was there right away, no waiting at all.  Quick easy question and we were off again.  The second problem was on the very last item.  She wanted to know the address of a store, which I have to admit I was not prepared for.  Flipp will only let me price match locally so I knew it was a local store but could not find the address on the flyer.  It was just too small on the screen.  I had an idea of where it was, but was not a 100% sure so I wanted to give her the right address.   Just as I found it she asked another cashier if he knew where the store was.  He did and she was off again.

The lady behind me who was okay with me price matching and couponing started yelling at me because I should have been more organized and I was holding everyone up.  WHAT?  Nope sorry, but I have no idea how much more organized I could have been.  I told her that it was going to take some time, but she decided to stay in line behind me.  I have to admit I was confused.  The cashier was so fast that it took less time with all my coupons then some of my smaller orders without coupons or price matching. 

I had one little problem, trying to find the store address.  The issue took less than a minute from beginning to end.  As soon as I let the cashier know I did not know for sure the address but would look it up she was asking the cashier beside her.  So as far as delays and issues it was a really small one.  The lady’s reaction to the whole thing was not.  Yet she felt perfectly comfortable yelling at me. 

This lady decided that because I had coupons and was price matching it was okay to be extremely rude to me.   Why was it okay for her to yell at me, because she had to wait in line behind me?  This was not the first time something like this has happened.  I have had cashiers give me attitude and make comments, even on just a small order with one or two coupons or price matching.  I have had people come up behind me and then leave in a huff because I was couponing or price matching.  Some become abusive like the lady today.  
 
Some people love watching how much I save.  Some cashiers are wonderful, nice, kind, considerate and even coupon and price match themselves.   So I know it is the individuals who have the issue, not all shoppers or cashiers.

It is still disruptive and embarrassing when someone takes the opportunity to be abusive, cashier or other customers.  But that is not going to stop me.  I save way too much money by couponing and price matching.  

Friday, March 13, 2015

East Side Mario's One of the worst dinning experiences we have had in a very long time


We had decided to go out for dinner as a treat.  My daughter has been bugging us for months to go to East Side Mario's.  We had planned to go to a different restaurant but as we drove by the East Side Mario's we saw the sign for their 12 for 12 special.  12 different entrees for $12 and kids would eat for free (actually was $5 off their meal off the kids menu so no it was not “free”).  We decided to go in – biggest mistake in a long time.  Horrible, horrible service and the food simply sucked.
 
It was about 5 pm, a little early for us but we went in anyway.  Because there were 5 of us we had about a 15 to 20 minute wait to be seated.  They had several empty tables that were reserved, and that was understandable.  It was once we were actually seated that the problems began.


When we were seated the waitress showed up with our menus.  I told her that we really needed to get a chocolate milk for our two year old daughter.  She was very fussy and I wanted to keep her calm.  At that point we ordered a coffee for myself, water for my husband and two fancy drinks for the older two kids.  I stressed that we really needed the chocolate milk.  20 minutes later, yes 20 minutes later she showed up with my coffee and the water for my husband.  She claimed that the bar was holding up the kids drinks.  It was another 10 minutes after that before the kids drinks showed up.  So even though we had shown up about 5 pm it was 6 pm before we got our drinks.  It was not that busy!

By then I have spent a half hour trying to keep a two year old calm.  When my husband’s water s showed up the two year old attacked it, put her hand in it and started drinking it.  The waitress saw this and still took over 10 minutes to bring us the kids drinks.  I am sorry but it does not take a ½ hour to pour a glass of chocolate milk.  She never brought my husband a fresh water, and I had drank my coffee before she showed up with the kids drinks, it was over an hour before I got a refill of coffee.



Oh, by the way, she did not take our order until after the drinks arrived.  So in a half hour she came to our table to drop off the menus and we gave her our drink orders.  She came back to drop off our drinks and then after that came to take our order.   By now the two year old is going out of her mind.  It was impossible for me to look at the menu and deal with her, hence why I had asked for the chocolate milk, to keep our two year old happy and give me a chance to look over the menu.

She dropped the kids drinks off asked if we were ready to order.  I said no I needed a moment as I was trying to choose between two items.  I was about to ask her a question about two of the menu items but she walked away and did not come back for quite some time.  I could see her standing at the other end of the restaurant by the kitchen talking.  We could see that people who came in after us had their meals before we even had our order taken.  Heck they had their meals before we had our drinks.
She eventually came back. I had been staring at her for about 10 minutes.  We quickly placed our orders but when it came to me I still had my two questions to ask.  She made it very clear she was not happy about me taking her time by asking her about the two pasta sauces.  I quickly just picked something because I was afraid that if I did not she was going to make us wait forever before she came back to take our order.

Now it is after 6 pm, our kids are used to eating at 6 pm.  The two year old is now really upset, drank her milk within a minute and had been stuck in a restaurant for over an hour, with no food and not able to run around and play.  We waited until about 6:20 before the bread arrived.  Another 15 to 20 minutes for the soup and salad to arrive.  It was about 7 pm before our entrĂ©e’s arrived.  We had been in the restaurant for two hours before getting our meals.
 


Our food was lukewarm, not hot.  The pasta was too al dente, it needed about another minute the sauces were not very good at all.  The bread was just okay.  The garden salad was tasteless, very little dressing and it was very plain.  The Caesar salad was not that good, no garlic, very bland.  The soup had no flavour at all.  Nothing tasted very good, not even with cheese added to it.  Our two year old would only eat a couple of the noodles off my plate, and the ice cream desert.  She did not touch her meal at all.  We ended up packing up our dinner and going home.  I started to feel sick after eating, so did my kids.  It took forever to get our bill.  I actually packed up the kids and went to the car while my husband waited for the bill so he could pay. 


Now understand we went to the restaurant prepared to keep our two year old occupied.  We had her Innotab with movies and games on it.  We had crayons and paper and even a few toys.  However, we never expected to be stuck in the restaurant for 2 ½ hours.  No one can expect a two year old to be stuck at a table for 2 ½ hours.  The whole experience was horrible.   It was so bad that my husband only gave the waitress a $2 tip on a $54 bill, and we normally give more than 10% as a tip.  So you know it had to be bad for us not to give a good tip.  We are never ever going back to East Side Mario's.  The food was not worth the money and the experience was just nasty.

Sunday, February 8, 2015

Why don’t people want to change their lives for the better?

I have been noticing many requests for food, diapers and other necessities on Facebook and other places.  Many people are struggling to survive.   I get it, lots of people just don’t have the money to make it from paycheque to paycheque (working or not).  I know that it is a reality, many people have to go to food banks, and even then it is easy to find yourself without before you have any money to buy more.

I always feel bad, and worry about the kids because it is usually someone with children asking for help.  Not saying that people with kids are going without more than those without kids.  I just think that a good parent is going to let go of their pride enough to ask for help when it is for their kids, where they may not if it was just for their self.  I know, I am a parent and we struggled for a long time.  For my kids I went to food banks, went without so my kids had the food or clothing they needed.  A few times in my life I have had to ask for a little help, and was lucky enough to get it.
For the local people asking for help I have offered to help them change how they buy stuff, to coupon.  I have even offered to give them coupons and take them out so that they can get to the store and learn how to get their money to buy more then it usually does.  Heck, for some things all I have to do is pay the tax.  It is how my family is able to have the food we do.  You save on what you can and use the rest to buy what you have to. 

So far not one person has taken me up on it and I don’t understand why not.  I mean, sure I cannot give you food right this second (actually some of the coupons will give you free food) but I am willing to teach you and help you so you can feed your family better using coupons and price matching.  It really works, but it does take time and a lot of effort.  It can be very difficult when you bus and have to try and buy everything for the month in one trip.  I know, I have had to do that for a long time.  I don’t understand why people are willing to ask for help, but then are not interested in making changes so they don’t have to ask for help.

I learned a long time ago that not everyone with their hand out actually needs it, some do, but some make a good living begging.  Other people are usually just fine but something happened to put them in a position of needing help for this week or month but things will be fine after that.  Others are in a position of needing help all the time, not enough money, too much debt, or they simply don’t have a clue how to handle the money they do have. 


I just find it frustrating when there are people who would benefit by making a few changes in their lives are unwilling or not interested in making any type of change.  It makes me question if I should keep offering to help.  I am sure if I said, here take the food I have worked so hard to get for my family they would be glad to take it, but are not interested in doing the work for their self.  I just don’t get it.  

Monday, January 12, 2015

Couponing and Price Matching feeds my family


There is a downside to empathy. It is hard for me to see others in need and not help.  It is hard to see the stories and videos of all the horrible things going on in the world, and my own neighbourhood.  It is hard to walk away from a child knowing they are hungry or in pain, but you are not in a position to help (not actually walking away from a child, but hearing about it is enough for me to feel as if I am).  This weekend I had one child (my daughters’ friend) ask for a drink, milk because she had not had any for some time.  I have been there a few times this last year alone, I know how hard it is when you cannot even buy milk.

Today I saw several posts from Moms out of money and food asking for help, in my town.  I get it, I have been there.  I had to change how I lived my life.  I had to learn how to budget and give up things and go without.  I had to spend the time getting the deals and going without something to stock up on something on sale because it would save us money in the long run.


The real issue is we are poor.  Even those of us with jobs can be poor.  Our income does not match with our debt load or the cost of just living.  I am lucky, I was shown how to shop, use price matching and couponing last year.  I am now able to buy more for less, sometimes even free.  In Canada it is hard work saving money that way, but it is worth it.  I joined groups that do the same thing and we all help each other find deals on food and anything else we can.


I have to admit that couponing and price matching and stocking up on stuff has saved our butts a few times when money was short, or gone.  I don’t think I could feed my family as well as I do if I was not couponing and price matching.  Even with that the cost of meat is getting to be too much.  I am going to have to learn to have meals without it most of the time now, and less of it when we do.  So we have to change how we do things again.


I know part of it is that we getting hit with the January hardships.  We (as in most of us, not us personally this year) spent too much trying to give our kids Christmas, to celebrate and give joy, instead of going without of always feeling poor.  Suddenly the money and food are low or even gone and there is still too much time before there is going to be any money. 

I wish there was some way I could change this, make things better for people and it hurts my heart and soul to see the way people live, and are going without.  Mainly because I have been there, I grew up like that and lived most of my life that way, even when I had money I did not feel like I did, that something was going to happen and I would have nothing.  My greatest fear is to be homeless, or be unable to feed my children so when I see others unable to feed theirs I want to help.  I am feeling very sad right now. There is just too much BAD going on.  

Saturday, January 10, 2015

Hate crime vs terrorist attack what is the difference:

(Charlie Hebdo attack in Paris - murder of a policeman, who just happened be to Muslim)

With the many, many different attacks going on in the world it is interesting to see the labels people use.  Some people refer to an "event" as a hate crime and others call it a terrorist attack.  When it comes down to it, what is the difference?  Both are targeted, both are designed to create fear, both are a way to try and control the actions of others and say your way is the only way and that anyone who does not follow that one life path should be harmed or killed.  It does not matter if it is committed by one perpetrator or by many, the result is still the same. 

All these types of "crimes" are the result of anger and hate: the man shooting women from a tower, bombing a planned parenting clinic, people flying planes into buildings, others using car bombs to kill people of a different religion or geographical area, the rape, torture and murder of people "on the other side" regardless of sex, age or even religious or political affiliation.  This is not a Muslim "issue", it is a continuous issue throughout history with different "players" be it Catholics versus Protestants, Christine vs Pagans, Irish vs English, or Muslims against anyone, and many more examples.  At some point every group, be it geographical, cultural or religious has either been targeted, or been the aggressor. (If I am wrong please give me examples of a people that have never been the victim or aggressor.)
No need to hate, or teach hate


I don’t have any answers on how to change this.  I don’t even know if humankind can change this part of ourselves, it always seems to be us against them.  I have to laugh because even as I write this I do so knowing that I am trying to influence others, to get them to "change" and see things my way.  Sure my ideal is to not hate, harm or kill but still it is my idea of what is good and right.  I cannot make others follow my ideals, The difference between me and people I would consider terrorists or do hate crimes is that I am not going to try and force others to change and do as I say or harm those that don't believe as I do.  
Vasco da Gama fans attack an Atletico Paranaense fan during the match in Joinville in Santa

In one way sports and other competitions seem to be a good way to fulfill the need for us vs them.  But it seems as if that need to identify with one group, and be against or better then another never goes away, just gets bigger.  There is even violent conflicts between people who like different teams, so even sports competitions don't control or reduce that need.  It is one of our greatest weaknesses.  It is a great way to control a population, give them someone to blame, to be angry at, to hate and harm.
 
The greatest example I can give is Hitler. He knew he needed a focus population to blame so he found a population that did not have a “country” to support them, the Jewish.  He used hate, discrimination and in the end mass murder to unite and control his country.  Others still use his ideas to justify feeling “We are better than everyone else, we are right, people must do as we want” and making it okay to hate, harm and kill everyone that does not fit in their ideal world.  The funny part is Hitler himself did not fit in his so called perfect race of people.  That alone in my view justifies the belief that all his propaganda was political and power motivated, not an actual belief of superiority.  The hate and us vs. them was simply a tool to get him what he wanted.
(I don't know if this is a real quote from Hitler or not, regardless idea behind it is valid, the victor writes the history books)
 

I think in most cases this is true, even when it is disguised as a religious motivation, it still comes down to “We want you to do what we think is right, not what you think it right.  Only we have the right to make choices.”  I am sure that the people actually doing the killing (and in some cases dying for their cause) really believe what they are being taught.  It is the people telling them what to do, what to think that you have to take a close look at.  It is never a good idea to follow blindly, no matter what the belief or instructions are.  Think for yourself, make choices.  And if your salvation comes at the cost of others rights, freedoms and lives is it really salvation?

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Cashier at No Frills refused to price match!


I normally like Danny’s No Frills in Hamilton, ON.  It is usually well kept, clean, stocked and I get good service.  More importantly they price match.  So today when I was shopping (Nov. 25, 2014 at 1:15 in the afternoon) I let one lady know about a great deal on TP at Walmart.  I showed her the Flipp app on my phone and the price.  She decided to buy the TP and price match.  I told her that I would meet her at the cashier and show them the sale on my phone.  I had the actual flyer but it was in the bottom of my cart under a bunch of stuff.

When she got to the cashier I politely stood to the side with my stuff (I was still shopping) and waited to show the cashier the flyer/sale on my phone.  She very loudly told me that I could not do that.  I was surprised but said okay.  I also said that the last time I was there they let me use the Flipp app to price match.    I was told, “Unless I was paying for the TP we could not use my phone to price match.”

Okay, so I dug out my flyer and went to hand it to the other customer so she could use it to price match.  At that point the cashier told me, “No, she cannot use your flyer.  To price match she has to bring in her own flyer.”  I never heard of any one refusing to let someone use a flyer, regardless if they brought it in or someone else did.  Here is the sad part.  The customer had just purchased over a $150 in items.  She had the TP separate, and it was the only item she was going to price match.  I could have price match most of the items she had and saved a lot of money, but she only wanted to do one price match and the cashier would not let her.  To me it goes against their price matching policy.  Both the other customer and I were polite and pleasant through the whole thing.  The cashier was anything but. 

I talked to one of the staff on the floor about their policy and he said he had never heard of anyone refusing to let someone price match using a flyer just because they did not bring it in themselves.  However, the cashier was actually yelling at us that the other customer could not price match using my flyer.  None of the other cashiers said anything, and trust me everyone heard the cashier.

At this point I decided I was not going to continue my shopping at Danny’s No Frills.  I was going to buy what I had in my cart and then finish my shopping at Giorgio’s No Frills.  Needless to say I made sure I did not go to her register.  I only price matched a couple of items and used a couple of coupons, but I did not want the hassle she was sure to give me if I had gone to her.  I am glad that the other shopper I was chatting to earlier took one of my flyers to price match, I had my app and did not need it.  I am sure if that cashier had seen me handing it to her she would have tried to stop her from using it.

No Frills advertises the heck out of their price matching to bring people in.  After all, every flyer is a No Frills flyer because they will price match. Nowhere does it say you can only use the flyer (or app on a phone) if you bring it in.  It does not say you cannot share a flyer, or give one away.  

I still like Danny’s No Frills but I have to admit I am thinking about not going there anymore. Not if they are going to use silly rules to prevent people from price matching.  I had no issues at Giorgio’s No Frills, and in the past they had no problems with me sharing or giving my flyer to someone else, even if they were in front or behind me in line.  So Giorgio’s No Frills is getting my business; even though Danny’s No Frills is the bigger store with more products.  Customer service counts for a lot these days. After all I can choose to price match at any other No Frills, Walmart, Target and Freshco.

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Coupons I have as of Nov 23 - Canadian Coupons

Please note that I am doing this in order of the request for coupon (the time I get the PM for it).  So if you request but then I put anothers name under it please understand they requested first.  If the trade does not go through I will have a list of each person in order of the request.  When sending me a request please include the picture number to make things easier on both of us.  Thank you.
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only a couple of the $3 k-cup coupons in the bottom left side available.
Other three coupons are gone

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