You recognize the drill. After payment for your three-month supply of granola bars and also a decade’s worth of sandwich bags, a Costco employee will ask for your receipt. She’ll glance in her cart and —I always assumed —confirm those 90 cans of Sprite to be bought and paid for. Yet there’s more going on here than straightforward theft prevention.


In fact, it might just be in her head that the trusty receipt checker think you’re trying to embezzle your mass items. According to Costco’s customer company site, there are two factors that they’re actually checking her receipt every time you departure the save (and these factors have everything to do with maintaining tabs top top cashier performance and also surprisingly nothing to perform with the concept that you’re a shoplifter).

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The first reason Costco checks your receipt is together a means of list control. Basically, through checking her receipt, Costco is ensuring the their cashiers effectively scanned each item in your cart. The 2nd reason that the receipt-checkers exist is come make sure that you’ve been charged properly for the items you’ve purchased.

Cart history

“To mine mind yes, really not just to stop civilization from stealing,” David, a former Costco employee, said Consumerist. “I hardly ever before saw people that had actually items that had actually not been paid for. Accurate maybe once or twice in a month of working the door. We would catch hundreds of dollars a mainly in overcharges, though.”

According come David, there were multiple instances during his time functioning at Costco the customers would accidentally obtain charged twice for item in their cart. In the case, a supervisor would certainly either refund the customer’s money, or send someone the end onto the floor to retrieve the correct amount that the overcharged item to add to your cart.



“With the kind of volume Costco does errors room frequent and sometimes simply can’t it is in helped. The scanners are so sensitive that it’s really simple to accidentally scan other twice and not notice,” that went on come explain. “During the moment I spent receipt checking ns probably caught well over $1000 in overcharges.”

Still, even with the expertise that Costco’s receipt-checking motives have actually next-to-nothing to perform with client mistrust, some human being still obtain pretty boil by the policy.

According to CheatSheet, one Oregon guy took things to the next level as soon as he got into a fight v a Costco employee after trying come sneak the end of the keep without showing his receipt. Wells ended up break his leg and also suing Costco for $610,000 — a jury awarded that nothing.

If you’re a diehard Costco enthusiast, shot not to take their receipt-checking plan personally. No, lock don’t think you’re a thef — it transforms out castle do have your best interests in ~ heart.

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