A new report by the Consumer Reports Institute finds that Costco’s cashiers may be a little less trustworthy than you might think.
The institute looked at more than 40 years of Costco customer reviews, and found that the company’s cashier service is inconsistent at best.
“You have these clerks who are really easy to get to, but they’re not trustworthy,” says Bob Miller, president and chief executive officer of Consumer Reports.
“And the reason they’re trustworthy is because the customer has no idea what they’re buying,” he says.
“In some cases, you get a phone call from a customer service representative, and they can’t remember what you bought, and it’s very frustrating,” says Miller.
Costco’s cash register is one of many problems with its customer service.
The company has had complaints about its poor customer service for years, with employees complaining about low pay, the lack of customer service and even the ability to call you back after a customer’s order has been placed.
“There are a number of things that are a little bit alarming about what you have to go through in order to get your cash, and we do have a lot of complaints that we can’t be reached by the customer,” Miller says.
The problems at Costco have been documented in recent months by consumer advocacy group Consumer Watchdog.
Consumer Watchdogs has also reported problems at several other grocery stores, and now says it has compiled a list of about 150 other companies that Costco has not only had problems with customer service but also poor customer support.
“We’re seeing that the worst things you can do are just call and go,” says Scott DeSouza, director of the Consumer Watchdaws consumer advocacy project.
“You can’t really get the support you need to get through the customer service lines.”
DeSouado says Costco’s problems are not limited to the store itself.
“I’ve been doing this for over 20 years, and I’ve never had any problems,” he tells ABC News.
“I’ve had problems when people have gone through the checkout, and that’s something that Costco should be very aware of, and not be a bystander to,” says DeSo.
The Consumer Reports report is not the first to raise concerns about the cashier’s experience at Costco.
In April, the consumer advocacy organization Consumers Union found that some Costco stores were not always staffed and did not always follow the same policies.
“One of the issues that Costco faced is the high turnover, and the number of employees that came and went was pretty high,” says Consumers Union spokesperson Susan Strain.
“The customer service reps that are in the store, they are always on hand.
So, you don’t see them leaving the store.
And then, the ones that are on the phone, they don’t come to the stores.
You know, you can call them.
You can talk to them on the telephone.
You get the same answers back.
It’s really frustrating.”