True gripes: Unsolicited receipts

Share
Related Topics
A decade ago, I could go into a shop, cafe or restaurant and, should I want one, end up having to ask for a receipt. Only to be greeted with a look that showed that to provide me with one would be too much trouble.

Oh, how things have changed. Now it seems that the simple task of spending money necessitates the purchase of a receipt. Okay, if I buy a new shirt and pay cash, rather than with a credit card, then I would like to have a receipt just in case I decide to take the shirt back for any reason, (I kid myself, I have never taken an article of clothing back to any shop). Or if I buy a week's shopping from the supermarket, and have included items for my flatmate, then the receipt will be accepted to enable me to sort out who owes what later on.

Yet when I buy a packet of cigarettes which I know are pounds 2.58, as they have been for some time, the inclusion of a receipt with my change gets my temperature up. I hand over a tenner and the assistant taps the info into the till, takes the change, then waits until the receipt is printed, tears it off and somehow manages to wedge it in between the fiver and the pounds 2.42 before placing it into my hand.

What do they expect me to do? It's a packet of cigs, for crying out loud! It's the brand I've smoked for years. Am I going to bring them back and exchange them for some crisps? Are they likely to be returned as an unwanted gift? Maybe I'm going to export them and claim the tax back.

Last week I'd arranged to meet a friend in a pub I've never been to before. I was early and bought myself a pint of bitter. Handed over a fiver, and guess what I got with my change? What is the point? Perhaps it is for proof of purchase: should I find the beer cloudy and wish to return it, the receipt will prove that I didn't buy it in a different pub. What next? Receipts for lottery tickets? Return them for a refund on Sunday morning.

Meanwhile, we have pockets full of scraps of paper, written in illegible blue ink, which mingle with our loose change and make us think "I must have saved that for a reason" when we clear them out. Or we end up with streets littered with confetti.

Who knows, maybe William Harston could ask his readers to find a use for them, or a reason for them, saddest of all - a name for collectors of them?

React Now

Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Transport Administrator / Planner

£20000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This fast growing reinforcing s...

Austen Lloyd: Corporate Tax Associate - London

Excellent Package: Austen Lloyd: CITY - HIGHEST QUALITY INTERNATIONAL FIRM - A...

Austen Lloyd: Senior Law Costs - London City

Excellent Package: Austen Lloyd: CITY - EXCELLENT FIRM - We have an outstandin...

Austen Lloyd: In-House Solicitor / Company Secretary - London

Excellent Package: Austen Lloyd: IN-HOUSE - NATIONAL CHARITY - An exciting and...

Day In a Page

Read Next
 

Errors & Omissions: Magna Carta, sexing bishops and ministerial aides

John Rentoul
 

‘They’ve seen the future – and got it for a song’: the unlikely history of Canary Wharf

Jack Brown
Isis hostage crisis: The prisoner swap has only one purpose for the militants - recognition its Islamic State exists and that foreign nations acknowledge its power

Isis hostage crisis

The prisoner swap has only one purpose for the militants - recognition its Islamic State exists and that foreign nations acknowledge its power, says Robert Fisk
Missing salvage expert who found $50m of sunken treasure before disappearing, tracked down at last

The runaway buccaneers and the ship full of gold

Salvage expert Tommy Thompson found sunken treasure worth millions. Then he vanished... until now
Homeless Veterans appeal: ‘If you’re hard on the world you are hard on yourself’

Homeless Veterans appeal: ‘If you’re hard on the world you are hard on yourself’

Maverick artist Grayson Perry backs our campaign
Assisted Dying Bill: I want to be able to decide about my own death - I want to have control of my life

Assisted Dying Bill: 'I want control of my life'

This week the Assisted Dying Bill is debated in the Lords. Virginia Ironside, who has already made plans for her own self-deliverance, argues that it's time we allowed people a humane, compassionate death
Move over, kale - cabbage is the new rising star

Cabbage is king again

Sophie Morris banishes thoughts of soggy school dinners and turns over a new leaf
11 best winter skin treats

Give your moisturiser a helping hand: 11 best winter skin treats

Get an extra boost of nourishment from one of these hard-working products
Paul Scholes column: The more Jose Mourinho attempts to influence match officials, the more they are likely to ignore him

Paul Scholes column

The more Jose Mourinho attempts to influence match officials, the more they are likely to ignore him
Frank Warren column: No cigar, but pots of money: here come the Cubans

Frank Warren's Ringside

No cigar, but pots of money: here come the Cubans
Isis hostage crisis: Militant group stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

Isis stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

The jihadis are being squeezed militarily and economically, but there is no sign of an implosion, says Patrick Cockburn
Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action

Virtual reality: Seeing is believing

Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action
Homeless Veterans appeal: MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’

Homeless Veterans appeal

MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’ to help
Larry David, Steve Coogan and other comedians share stories of depression in new documentary

Comedians share stories of depression

The director of the new documentary, Kevin Pollak, tells Jessica Barrett how he got them to talk
Has The Archers lost the plot with it's spicy storylines?

Has The Archers lost the plot?

A growing number of listeners are voicing their discontent over the rural soap's spicy storylines; so loudly that even the BBC's director-general seems worried, says Simon Kelner
English Heritage adds 14 post-war office buildings to its protected lists

14 office buildings added to protected lists

Christopher Beanland explores the underrated appeal of these palaces of pen-pushing
Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

Scientists unearthed the cranial fragments from Manot Cave in West Galilee