Would You Opt Out Of Tipping While An Employee Watches You?

Would You Opt Out Of Tipping While An Employee Watches You?

Reader Bill was getting some sandwiches and paying with a credit card when he noticed something new and unusual on the payment machine. It prompted him to leave a tip between ten and twenty percent, to choose his own tip amount, or to decline tipping entirely. This makes sense in a country where most of us don’t carry much cash anymore, but there’s something about it that Bill doesn’t like.


Family Wants Petco To Pay After Dog Dislocated Hip During Grooming

Family Wants Petco To Pay After Dog Dislocated Hip During Grooming

When a California woman picked up her daughter’s dog from his grooming appointment, it was obvious that something was wrong. The Shih Tzu was walking on three legs, not putting his right rear paw down on the ground. While the groomer admitted that she had pulled on that leg to get the animal into position to be groomed, nothing else seemed amiss. Or so the store claims. [More]

Teleflora On Mother’s Day: Eh, This Is Close Enough

Teleflora On Mother’s Day: Eh, This Is Close Enough

Ordering flowers to be delivered for the major flower-sending holidays, Valentine’s Day and Mother’s Day, is always taking a risk. When florists are doing such high volume, you run the risk of getting flowers that aren’t exactly what is pictured on the website, or that aren’t perfectly fresh. As long as they aren’t dead, that’s okay, right? What if they substitute in another color when the arrangement’s color is the entire point? [More]

Don’t Like 24/7 Billy Joel? SiriusXM Can Just Suspend Your Service

Don’t Like 24/7 Billy Joel? SiriusXM Can Just Suspend Your Service

Late last month, SiriusXM took ’40s on 4, its earliest decade-themed station, off the air and replaced it with a three-month temporary station that plays only the music of Billy Joel. Earlier this week, we shared a reader’s tip to complain and get a three-month refund for the inconvenience. Well, SiriusXM is on to us. [More]

(Morton Fox)

Olive Garden Suggested A Deceptively High Tip On My Receipt…Or Did It?

Raphael recently went out to eat at Olive Garden, the food and service were, he says, “fine.” He was less delighted when he looked at the receipt, though. It provided useful suggested tips for 15%, 18%, and 20%. Only these suggestions weren’t actually 15-20% of his before-tax dinner tab, which is what you’re supposed to base tips on. Or are things different on Planet Darden? [More]


Get Past Executive Customer Service Gatekeepers With Letter-Writing 101

As items in our mailbox go, April’s story is pretty mundane. She returned her broadband modem to her Internet service provider five months ago, and they caught up with her and…sent her to a collection company. No one believed April that she had returned the modem. What could she do? Write to the CEO, that’s what. [More]


Everyone Sees Themselves In This Rage-Filled Customer Service Meltdown Video

Sometimes a picture, story, or video posted online seems so over-the-top that we think that it can’t possibly be real. It has to be a viral marketing ploy, a prank, or somehow involve Jimmy Kimmel. Listening to this recording that purports to be a real customer service call to a home security company, we desperately wanted it to be a hoax…but the court of Internet public opinion has ruled that it probably isn’t. [More]

When I Finally Earned A Free Haircut, Supercuts Pulled Their Loyalty Card

When I Finally Earned A Free Haircut, Supercuts Pulled Their Loyalty Card

It was only a few short months ago that John went to Supercuts for a haircut and presented his loyalty card. They happily signed it for him. He finally had enough signatures to get a free haircut after carrying around the card for years! When he showed up to redeem the card, though, he learned that the program had ended just in time for him to lose out. Why? [More]

(Todd Kravos

Coming Soon: Withdraw Prepaid Debit Cards From The Nearest ATM

The automated teller machine is now ubiquitous and can perform most of the functions you would visit a bank branch for: withdrawing cash, transferring money, making deposits. One thing that has really never changed about ATMs is what they dispense. Cash is cash: untraceable, lightweight, and nobody charges you any fees to use it. How boring and unprofitable. [More]


Tanning Salon Tells Woman She’s Too Fat To Bronze, Won’t Give Refund

No one can escape the laws of physics, but businesses should at least try to follow the rule of “don’t sell people things that you have no intention of providing.” An Ohio woman claims that a local tanning salon sold her a monthly package for $70, then told her that she wouldn’t be allowed to use most of the beds because she’s too fat.



Well, At Least Most People Aren’t Stingy Jerks When They Tip

Tipping is a hot topic here on Consumerist, and…well, everywhere else online too. Common decency dictates that when you use a coupon or otherwise get discounted services or chow, you should still tip based on the original sticker price. Makes sense, right? And yet, a recent survey shows that 26% of adults who say that they leave tips claim that they tip based on the post-coupon total. For shame!



Coffee Shop Owner: Quit Asking Me To Offer Suspended Coffees Already

Last week, we explained why we think that the “suspended coffee” movement that allegedly began in Naples, spread all over Bulgaria, and exploded on Facebook isn’t such a hot idea. But don’t just take it from us: the owner of an independent London coffee shop weighed in on the movement. Her take: it’s insulting that people think independent coffee shops don’t already help people who look like they could use a warm cup of coffee, and you should support your local indie shop. Well, that second part was predictable.


Where did they go?

Is The USPS More Likely To Lose Boxes Emblazoned With The Word ‘Atheist’?

Here’s something odd. Would you think that packages would get lost more or less often according to the brand on the box or the words on their packaging? That shouldn’t be the case. A German company that sells handmade, minimalist shoes, did a cool branding thing and uses tape with the company’s name printed on it to seal their shipping boxes. That company’s name? “Atheist.” They noticed that a lot of packages sent to the United States were significantly delayed, and wondered why that was. So they conducted an experiment. That experiment proved that if you want a package to get lost, brand it with the word “ATHEIST.”



Nobody At Brother USA Knows How To Forward An E-Mail

Fifty years ago, while her husband was in the military and stationed in Japan, Lance’s grandmother bought a lovely Brother sewing machine. She has now handed it down to Lance’s wife. The nice thing is that she still had the manual, but that manual is only in Japanese, since the machine was only sold on the Japanese market. The machine has all kinds of advanced features that Mrs. Lance can’t access, because she can’t read Japanese. Maybe, Lance thought, Brother has the manual available for purchase, or even in digital form.



FTD Salvages Fiancée’s Birthday Present After Florist Tries To Kill Her With Lilies

Sometimes, it doesn’t matter all that much when a florist substitutes in a different flower from the one you ordered, and sometimes it matters very much. In the case of Andy’s fiancée, it’s actually kind of important for her to not get a certain kind of flower, because she’s allergic to it. It’s no fun to get flowers for your birthday if you can’t be in the same room as them. [More]

This 1-800-Flowers ‘Deluxe Fruit And Gourmet Basket’ Is Some Bruised Fruit, Beef Jerky, And Cheese Nips

Looks tasty.

It’s not that David expected earth-shattering things from a 1-800-Flowers gift basket. He didn’t expect it to look exactly like the photo at left, especially since he ordered a smaller size. He was expecting something that didn’t look like your what lazy bachelor(ette) friend who can’t cook dredged up in the back of their kitchen cabinets to bring to your Super Bowl Party. [More]

FTD Thinks ‘A Different Vase Is OK’ And ‘Change The Flowers Entirely’ Mean The Same Thing

The same thing. Right?

At high-volume times like Valentine’s Day, and at any other time, really, flower-delivery services like FTD reserve the right to substitute something similar if they don’t have the exact item in stock that you want. Mark was upset shortly after Valentine’s Day because he ordered an arrangement that had a purple container, purple flowers, and some white lilies in it. Purple is her favorite color, you see, and lilies are her favorite flower. Isn’t Mark thoughtful? Speaking for the ladies of America, he is. He’s also really mad. [More]

More Valentine’s Day Mishaps From Proflowers

More Valentine’s Day Mishaps From Proflowers

Mykel picked out a lovely bouquet for his fiancée from Proflowers, but the lovely and lush bouquet isn’t what showed up on her desk. What she got had a lot fewer flowers than it had looked like on the site. [More]