• Report:  #1520476

Complaint Review: Dollar Tree - Palmdale, CA CA

Reported By:
LYNND - Antelope Valley, CA, United States

Dollar Tree
40018 10TH STREET W. Palmdale, CA, 93551-3005 CA, United States
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The following occurred on 8/11/2022 around 6:30 p.m. in Palmdale, CA at the 10th St. store location: I received an email stating that my online order was ready for in-store pickup. The email contains a bar code and a receipt number for in-store use. An employee by the name of Crystal refused to allow my spouse to make this PAID-FOR pickup because they were unable to reach their manager for assistance.

Upon learning that my spouse was refused the order and was told to come back the next day, I contacted the phone number provided for order support in the order confirmation email. A man who sounded half asleep answered their toll-free number WITHOUT stating his name or the fact that he worked for Dollar Tree (almost hung up because it sounded like I had reached a random person at home).

He further reinforced the impression that he was asleep by repeating the request for the order number, which I had to read back three times. When I explained that my spouse was at the store and was refused paid-for merchandise he immediately raised his voice in exasperation, and asked me what I expected him to do to help. (I'm thinking "Hey, isn't that YOUR job?")

At no point did the phone support agent offer me any options, so the phone call became a game of 20 questions:

First, I asked if anyone could contact the Store to walk the employee through the process that "Crystal" claimed not to be able to do to. (She had told my spouse that it would be like "stealing" if he left with the order even though it was paid for online and we had the supporting documents.) I was told by the Dollar Tree customer service that calling the store was not an option.

Second, I asked the agent — who never identified himself by name — whether or not the order could be replaced with a home-shipment on account of the fact that we live nearly an hour from the store (with gas prices above $5 per gallon going back TWICE for an already-paid-for order was asking too much in time and money.

Additionally, since it was almost the weekend, I was concerned that if we didn't turn around the very next day and pick it up, the order would be cancelled give the fact that this store has cancelled orders I have had shipped there before because they don't hold them more than about two or three days). The agent then said there was no way he could help with my ONLINE order even though the phone number I had called clearly states that it is for online order assistance.

Third, I explained that I was willing to go online and place a NEW order to replace the merchandise I was unable to pick up in store — I just needed a promo code to waive the shipping since that would have amounted to almost $25 for a $27 order (Dollar Tree will ship to store for free but for home delivery the rates are obscene). He said he couldn't do that either.

Fourth, I asked if I could have the District Manager phone number so I could at least report that the employees were not properly trained and therefore turning away customers whose orders had arrived for in-store pickup. He said he could not do that either.

Fifth, I asked if ANYONE was willing to help and he stated he would make a report.

Before I could ask him if there was a case number or if anyone would call me to follow up, he asked me if I wanted the phone number. I replied that I had only asked for one phone number, and he had already told me he couldn't give it to me — so which number was he offering now?

He refused to answer the question and instead repeated "So are you going to take the number or not?" I told him his tone was unprofessional and that he NEEDED TO ANSWER MY QUESTION SO THAT I WOULD UNDERSTAND WHO I WAS CALLING. Again, he repeated the same "Are you going to take the number or not?"

I take the mystery number, and after telling him I feel sorry for the fact that he wastes his time working for an employer that does not empower him to help, I hang up. When I get off the phone, I Google the number and realize it's bogus. The only number that comes up is the number for the Dollar Tree online order help line I had just called.

What I had called is 1-877-530-8733. This jerk stuck a 977 area code in front of the same number and used his position WORKING FOR DOLLAR TREE to screw wiith a customer. God only knows who I would have been talking to if I didn't catch the fact that he was screwing with me?

I decided that since I did not have any luck calling Dollar Tree's toll-free customer service line, I would call the store. That is when I learned that Crystal needed to reach her manager, Jessica, but claimed she was unable to do so.

I tried the sympathetic approach by telling her I used to work in retail and that when my manager was unavailable, I sometimes found it helpful to reach out to other stores/managers for help. She claimed my solution wouldn't have worked because she needed a "code". I explained that there IS a code on the email pickup notice.

Just in case the bar code doesn't scan, I pointed out that in a section labeled "STORE USE" it also contains the receipt number to manually enter. However, Crystal insisted this wasn't the code she needed. She explained she had only been "a manager for two weeks" and that when she couldn't reach the store manager, she called her Dad who manages another store and he couldn't help either because each store has a different "code".

By now I'm confused because the only other "code" I can think of is the employee ID number, which allows a cash register to track who is ringing up a transaction — but apparently it wasn't that either otherwise she would have been locked out of even doing in-store purchase checkouts.

Crystal tells me the same thing she told my spouse: The only way to fix it was to call and talk to the manager the next day. (After our trouble, why the heck wouldn't she ask her manager to call us?) She didn't care that my spouse was up since 4 a.m. and had stopped in after work — before dinner — to pick up the order after a 2-hour commute back into the AV area. And she was impervious to my complaint that returning to the store would require an hour round-trip drive due to the fact that we don't live in Palmdale.

STILL she did not apologize. In fact she said there had been OTHER in-store pickups that ended the same way — customers being told to come back on a different day. (What makes this unacceptable is that online orders are not held in store for pickup beyond 2-3 days. Asking a customer to come back means risking that the order will be cancelled for failure to pick up on time.)

The next day comes and I forget to do as she instructed — call and talk to her boss before her boss goes home for the day. My spouse gets off the freeway after work (Friday) and calls to ask me if I want to try to pick up the order. I suggest he call and find out if they've figured out how to ring it up in the cash register before driving all the way over since neither of us had talked to Jessica.

He reaches Crystal who AGAIN says she doesn't have the ability to check the order out. (So apparently even though she came into work the very next day, she left it solely up to us to talk to her boss about how to pick up our order — as opposed to asking her boss to give her the "code" (or training) so that it wouldn't happen again!

Finally my spouse has had enough. He asks Crystal if he is going to have to call the cops because she's keeping him from taking merchandise he's already paid for — and hadn't offered a refund, either.

The fact that 24 hours after turning away more than one customer over this same issue that Crystal still didn't know how to input an in-store pickup into the cash register was not and never should have been a customer problem.

This was NOT a situation were we, as the customer, failed to show up with proof that the order belonged to us. We followed the pickup instructions. On top of that, Dollar Tree doesn't allow customer returns anyway so why the heck did we need a cash register receipt when we already had our online checkout receipt?

If not hassling the customer was the point, an EASY solution would have been for Crystal to have taken my spouse's receipt number down, name and order number on a piece of paper, given him the order on 8/11 when the first pickup attempt was made and THEN, the next day, ask her boss to manually enter the pickup information in the computer. We wouldn't have been there for the cash register print-out — but the inventory system would have been updated to reflect that the pickup occurred — NO NEED FOR US TO BE THERE.

Upon hearing that my spouse was threatening to make a police report, Crystal suddenly found a way to get ahold of her boss. My spouse was then "allowed" to pick up our order; however, there was NOTHING offered as a courtesy for the inconvenience of the entire situation.

While I understand the Dollar Tree is a low-end retail chain, that's really no excuse for treating customers like trash. I know they can and should do better because when I worked in minimum wage retail job, I was expected to do better: At one of the places I worked, we had 20-year-old IBM cash registers that used to go on the fritz on a fairly regular basis. Sometimes we had to run the customer transactions with the old carbon-copy credit card slider-device and make change without a working register.

It was NEVER the customer's problem when an employee/new hire got confused over how to ring a transaction or our equipment didn't work. If a customer complained about a blemish on a book or a wrinkle on a page, employees were empowered to knock as much as 15% off the price without management override.

The place I worked in college took customer service so seriously that we had a district manager who would arrive unannounced and casually walk past the store to see what the employees were up to. He would sit on a bench and blend in with mall customers to watch that we greeted every single customer who walked through the doors. Coming from that background to a point in time where even a call to the corporate help line results in nothing but rude stonewalling is saddening to say the least.

We live in an incredibly rude and selfish culture, and Dollar Tree apparently doesn't care enough to accept customer feedback. Because I have been stymied at every turn from passing this feedback to a district manager (or even corporate), I have no other choice but to leave this report.


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