Kroger Receipt Comes With Mastercard Application Attached

Hey, grocery shopper! You look like a responsible consumer, what with your grocery buying and standing upright. Why not take a moment to fill out an impulse-buy credit card application? If you’re approved, we’ll give you $25 you can spend on your first charge!


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  1. Eldritch says:

    …that is one hell of a bad idea…

    • thelushie says:

      @Eldritch: Why? There is no identifiable information on it. You still have to go through the credit check procedure. I get them all the time. I ignore them.

      What I don’t ignore are the freebie coupons (free lettuce, free Ben and Jerrys, free artisan bread) coupons that I get in the mail for shopping at Kroger. Keep in mind, where I am we have three options: Walmart, Foodfair (which is dirty and nasty), or the recently remodeled, twice the size, has just about everything you want and if they don’t they are up for suggestions Kroger. Yeah, I shop alot at Kroger.

      • Travis Estell says:

        @thelushie: Actually, these are not just printed on the bottom of all Kroger receipts. It selects customers based on their past credit card usage in the store, and usually the customer’s name is printed on the mini-app.

  2. realserendipity says:

    Ive got King Sooper in my town but its the same thing. And I get one almost every time I shop in addition to cheap Colorado Rockies tickets offer and other “specials”. It turns a two inch receipt into at least eight.

  3. rpm773 says:

    2004 called and wants its great ideas about irresponsible credit back.

  4. xredgambit says:

    I love Kroger and I see these every now and then. I just ignore it. Only time I keep a receipt is when I use my health care spending account card.
    Maybe I should keep my receipt, I can say that I’m giving to charity when I buy milk, or else support farmers. I’m not too sure on the scam yet. I’ll think of something.

  5. ChuckECheese says:

    You look like a responsible consumer, what with your grocery buying and standing upright.

    Don’t forget breathing in and out!

  6. Grrrrrrr, now with two buns made of bacon. says:

    But can you get one with a mortgage application on the back?

  7. West Coast Secessionist says:

    Yeah, I love those huge receipts. My favorite wisecrack to use when at one of those stores: When I buy a small item or two, when they go to bag it I say “I don’t need a bag, I’ll just wrap my item(s) in the receipt.”

    Usually gets a knowing smirk, and it does work pretty well for demonstrating that you bought the crap as you walk out to any suspicious receipt-checker types.

    • bibliophibian says:

      @West Coast Secessionist: You *think* it’s a knowing smirk; it’s actually the cashier trying to conceal the nails-on-chalkboard mental agony of hearing the same “wisecrack” that every third customer thinks passes for witty repartee… over and over and over…

      As I occasionally tell my “wisecrack” prone elderly father, they’re not smiling at the humor of what you said, they’re smiling at the thought of strangling you and all the other people they hear say it (c:

  8. spankyshay says:

    Every time (4-5x per week) I get this receipt. Their reward card isn’t that bad but I haven’t bit.

  9. Anonymous says:

    I work at Kroger and we are very much encouraged to persuade customers to apply. Most customers don’t know it, but it can be very easily removed from prompting you in the future. If you go to the customer service desk and tell them you don’t want to be prompted anymore. They will scan your kroger plus card and then scan a barcode that they have at the desk and it shouldn’t prompt you anymore to sign up. I think the whole thing is a ridiculous, but they are trying some way to increase business. They use your kroger plus card to track your usage and thus pre-approving you.

  10. stopxstart says:

    I’ve worked at Kroger for about 2.5 years and they’ve been doing this for at least that long.

    If you want to be taken off of the “list” all you have to do is bring your shopper card to the service desk and they have a barcode to scan that will take you off.

    • Chris Stone says:

      @stopxstart: Same here. This isn’t news to me, nor is it to my customers. =/

    • realserendipity says:

      I would do this but I have been using the card for at least five years without actually having name to it. If Im afraid if a checker goes to change something, they will deactivate the card unless I give up name, address, etc.

      • Chris Stone says:

        @realserendipity: Cards are never deactivated. When you give them a name and address, it’s so that they can mail you coupons based on what you buy. When you give them a phone number, it’s so that you can enter it in when you misplace your card.

        Though such information would also be helpful for purposes of tracking consumer purchases, I don’t think they don’t need your name, because they can just track it through a “customer number” (the barcode). They’re not Big Brother, but they use the info to track what individual customers buy through time, and it helps the customers by taking what they buy and producing coupons for those or similar items so they’ll spend more. But they’re not going to be mad at you for not filling it out.

        • shepd says:

          @Chris Stone:

          Worse, when you give them a phone number, it’s so they can sell it to a telemarketer who you can’t stop from calling you because “You have a prior business relationship with them”.

          This is exactly what the gubbmint said when I told them I was being harassed. Instead I now just answer the phone for that number as “911 Emergency” and inform them that telemarketing to emergency services is illegal, seems to have caused the calls to taper off.

          • Chris Stone says:

            @shepd: Then why give your number to anyone? Even a friend can sell your number.

            On the official Kroger website, in the FAQ, there is a question: “Will Kroger sell my personal information?” The answer includes the following:
            “The Kroger Co. recognizes that privacy is very important to our customers and we pledge to protect the security and privacy of any personal information customers provide to us.”

            Also, speaking of informing people of doing illegal things–please correct me if I’m wrong, because I’m not too sure–but isn’t impersonating law enforcement illegal?

            • shepd says:

              @Chris Stone:

              I, weirdly enough, trust my friends not to sell my phone number to telemarketers. I used to also trust my bank not to sell my number to telemarketers. You know, being that they are a bank and, at the time, supposedly above reproach.

              How foolish of me. :(

            • shepd says:

              @Chris Stone:

              Ahh, crap, missed the last one. I never tell them I’m law enforcement, just that I’m an operator at a 911 call centre and I’m pissed that they found the non-911 phone number that connects them to us.

              I don’t believe 911 operators need a badge to work there. :)

              • Chris Stone says:

                @shepd: True, but still, I thought I heard somewhere that, even if you answer the phone like, “Hello, welcome to Pizza Hut, how may I help you?” that that’s not right. It seems like gray area and I’m not sure how to get a clear-cut answer on that, if there is one.

                And my point was simply that anyone has the ability to sell phone numbers. But Kroger, as I said, has a detailed Privacy Policy, so I trust them. And if they were ever found to be in violation, or even accused of it, they’d be in deep shit (horrible PR, possible lawsuits, etc.), so it’s not worth it for them anyway.

  11. zarex42 says:

    Why are people whining about this? A free $25 is a free $25.

    Target’s also done this for years. If you’re too much of an idiot to manage credit card responsibly, then that’s your problem. Me, I’m happy to accept the $25, and shame on anyone who criticizes Kroger for it.

    • pop top says:

      @zarex42: That’s the spirit! Maybe they’ll even give you some free M&Ms or a 20 oz. Pepsi for applying for a card you don’t need! Although if you have enough willpower, you should try holding out for the golf towels.

      • zarex42 says:


        I don’t know what your problem is, $25 is a fair deal for a new credit card, whether I “need” it or not. What’s the downside, assuming I’m not an idiot who can’t manage debt?

        Filling out a form for $1 worth of pepsi, M&M’s, or towels, is not worth my time. $25 is, and I’m sure a lot of people agree.

        • pop top says:

          @zarex42: “Deals” like that are how people have been suckered for years into getting cards they don’t need. Good for you if you know how to properly manage your finances, but it should be pretty obvious by now that most people don’t.

          It’s also not a “free” $25. You have purchase something to get it.

  12. castlecraver says:

    Target does this too, but the receipt slip indicates pre-approval and that you only need to verify your ID to get your account. If you’re too much of an idiot to jump on every store account they toss your way, shame on you. I shred these religiously.

  13. melambar says:

    I work at a Baker’s one of the Kroger companies, and these have been attached to receipts at our store for quite a while. Even employees get them, I just started receiving them on my receipts in the last few weeks. It isn’t very advertised, but you can opt out of the offer at the check stand, as long as you just got an app on your current purchase.

  14. Shoelace says:

    Free pen? I don’t want to write my identity on a supermarket register receipt if I don’t get to keep the pen.

  15. Chris Stone says:

    As a cashier, when someone’s receipt prints out such an application, I’m supposed to talk to the customer about it. Hell, the register even reminds me to. I don’t, though. I tried, and I found the dialog required to be annoying. I just don’t feel like advertising credit; it just seems inappropriate, especially lately with the economy.

    But yeah, this promotion has been going on for quite a while now… I got one myself and took it to Customer Care and had them take me off the list, which was very painless.

  16. witeowl says:

    You look like a responsible consumer, what with your grocery buying and standing upright.

    VOTE for best line in a Consumerist post. Genius, Mr. Walters. Pure genius.

  17. Eibmoz says:

    I work for Kroger, and it has been going on for awhile. I usually just laugh about it with customers, because who really wants a credit card right now? Most of the time, I dont tell them about it. Its annoying.

  18. Alexander Saites says:

    The worst part is that it turns what should be a short receipt into such a long one. Advertising the card makes since, but printing the actual application on a receipt just seem ridiculous. Even more ridiculous (in an entertaining sort of way) is the thought of actually turning it in.

  19. balthisar says:

    Sam’s does/did that whenever I use my Mastercard there, except they pitch Discover.

  20. pecan 3.14159265 says:

    I don’t have a Kroger near me but none of my stores have CC applications. All of mine advertise their own sales and such. I can see why it’s annoying.

    It turns a long receipt into a dead sea scroll’s amount of junk and I’d stop using credit at the grocery store if it did this but I hate carrying a wads of cash and feeding it through the self checkout kiosk or waiting for the cashier to count…and recount.

    • Megan Squier says:

      @pecan 3.14159265: Kroger is actually a pretty good store so I ignore the extra long receipt. They don’t argue with me about coupons like Wal-Mart does so its cool. Plus, the atmosphere is better too.

  21. Zombini says:

    The place I used to work used to offer several finance options. Anyone who was approved for a finance agreement tended to get auto-approved for a credit card, and the system would print out an application form for them to fill in. Did I have any takers? Did I cobblers. Not a single one filled in the application. Yet the company kept printing these out. And every last one went in the shredder.

  22. Matt says:

    Yeah the Smiths (owned by Kroger) in SLC does this. I’ll buy one thing and 95% of my receipt was a card application. And I don’t get where they hide the legalese for this application…

    • stopxstart says:

      @Matt: When you turn it in to the Customer Service desk, they check your ID against the information on the application and give you a pamphlet with all of the “legalese.”

  23. MFfan310 says:

    Kroger (and Scott’s, which is owned by Kroger) does this here in Fort Wayne. It’s pretty funny.

    Oh, and I happen to like Kroger a lot… real good sales on groceries, friendly people, and fresh produce.

  24. stopxstart says:

    @realserendipity: The barcode to have your plus card removed from such promos is actually a no value item (rings up $0.00 and is then cashed out) that is tracked through the company’s loyalty department. There is no information needed to have your card taken off the list for the credit card promo.