Shopping Discussion

Home Depot Eco Fee Refund Scam

  • Last Updated:
  • Nov 29th, 2011 5:40 pm
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Newbie
Nov 16, 2011
8 posts
1 upvote
YORK
sillysimms wrote:
Nov 17th, 2011 11:34 am
:) Has nothing to do with that. Home Depot announced that they were introducing the 5 cent bag fee across Canada - it isn't a training issue at all - cashiers are required to charge 5 cents because that is what HD wants across Canada:

http://www.homedepot.ca/wcsstore/HomeDe ... onment.pdf
Plastic Bag Reduction
On June 1, 2009, The Home Depot Canada introduced a $0.05 fee for plastic bags. This fee will help reduce the number of plastic bags used by its customers and help protect the environment. Customers have the choice of purchasing a reusable bag, bringing their own bag or bin, or not using a bag at all. The net proceeds will be used to fund sustainable housing and community projects across Canada through The Home Depot Canada Foundation.


They say they are not profiting from the proceeds (but are recouping the cost of their 'bags')! Not a training issue to be resolved.

Thanks for the information. What the associates had heard was that it was because we were using the same POS and it was in fact a training issue. A few of the sotres outside of Toronto are actually not charging the plastic bag fee due to customer concerns.
Deal Expert
Jan 7, 2002
16580 posts
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Waterloo, ON
xavier3 wrote:
Nov 17th, 2011 11:16 am
Yes, unfortunately I believe we share an identical POS across the country which is most likely the reason other Home Depot stores are charging for it.
I would suggest that your POS is a POS.
Upon totalling a sale, the POS asks for the number of bags. This is a training issue that will hopefully be addressed soon.
So outside Toronto:
• I can tell the sales associate, "None under the Toronto by-law" and they'll give me as many bags as I need for free?
• At an auto-checkout system I can key in "0" regardless of how many bags I need without triggering alarm bells and other embarrassing things?
veni, vidi, Visa
Newbie
Nov 16, 2011
8 posts
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YORK
bylo wrote:
Nov 17th, 2011 12:03 pm
I would suggest that your POS is a POS.


So outside Toronto:
• I can tell the sales associate, "None under the Toronto by-law" and they'll give me as many bags as I need for free?
• At an auto-checkout system I can key in "0" regardless of how many bags I need without triggering alarm bells and other embarrassing things?
It would be up to the sales associate you asked as they may have heard a different reasoning for the plastic bag charge. I am not able to comment on the security features at self-checkout.
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Jan 7, 2002
16580 posts
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Waterloo, ON
xavier3 wrote:
Nov 17th, 2011 12:22 pm
It would be up to the sales associate you asked as they may have heard a different reasoning for the plastic bag charge. I am not able to comment on the security features at self-checkout.
So in other words,
• If I want to argue over 5¢ with a sales associate and maybe their manager, good luck. YMMV.
• At self-check every customer is considered to be a thief until they prove otherwise.

I love HD but I've had nothing but trouble with your self-checkout even though I've never tried to game the system. My question to you was an honest attempt to get a straight answer to a simple question.
veni, vidi, Visa
Newbie
Nov 16, 2011
8 posts
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YORK
bylo wrote:
Nov 17th, 2011 12:47 pm
So in other words,
• If I want to argue over 5¢ with a sales associate and maybe their manager, good luck. YMMV.
• At self-check every customer is considered to be a thief until they prove otherwise.

I love HD but I've had nothing but trouble with your self-checkout even though I've never tried to game the system. My question to you was an honest attempt to get a straight answer to a simple question.
Your response will vary greatly depending on the associate or store you are shopping at. Regarding the self-checkout, the opposite is due here. We understand mistakes happen and if you forgot to scan something we will bring that to your attention. However, I would never a consider a customer a thief if I was not aware of the circumstances.

The self-checkout is very easy once you get used to it. Just remember to place the item on the scale immediately after scanning and do not place any objects (keys, purses, etc.) or lean on the scale. Heavier objects can be scanned by the SCO cashier.
Deal Expert
Jan 7, 2002
16580 posts
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Waterloo, ON
xavier3 wrote:
Nov 17th, 2011 2:40 pm
Regarding the self-checkout, the opposite is due here. We understand mistakes happen and if you forgot to scan something we will bring that to your attention. However, I would never a consider a customer a thief if I was not aware of the circumstances.

The self-checkout is very easy once you get used to it. Just remember to place the item on the scale immediately after scanning and do not place any objects (keys, purses, etc.) or lean on the scale. Heavier objects can be scanned by the SCO cashier.

We're digressing, but since you're with HD, let me give you some examples that back up my contention that the premise behind self-checkout is that the customer is going to rip you off, i.e. is a thief. First recall that this digression started when you said, "I am not able to comment on the security features at self-checkout." That doesn't sound very trusting.

Anyway, try this: Buy several of the same item. Instead of running each identical item through the scanner, try scanning the same item as many times as the number you're buying. (You know, just like a human cashier would.) Then wait for some sales associate to scurry up to the self-check to tell you that you have to scan each item individually. It doesn't matter that some of the items have lost their bar code. It doesn't matter if the items are large, bulky, awkward or inconvenient to scan individually. (Think of someone who buys a few 2x4 8' studs and doesn't want to scan each one individually because they're awkward and swinging them around a self-checkout could even be dangerous to others. Think of someone who buys several identical bags of cement mix or water softener salt and who doesn't want to sling 20kg bags around.). Then listen to a silicon sally tell you that you have to place each item in the output area so it can be weighed or measured or whatever, again no matter how awkward, inconvenient or dangerous that may be. Remember this is HD where they sell a large amount of -- you guessed it -- large, bulky, heavy items like lumber, ladders, cement, bulk salt, etc.

Either you trust me to be honest at the self-checkout or you don't. If you trust me then stop treating me like I'm about to steal from you by inconveniencing me with silly protocols that are intended solely to thwart thieves.
veni, vidi, Visa
Newbie
Nov 16, 2011
8 posts
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YORK
bylo wrote:
Nov 17th, 2011 4:09 pm
We're digressing, but since you're with HD, let me give you some examples that back up my contention that the premise behind self-checkout is that the customer is going to rip you off, i.e. is a thief. First recall that this digression started when you said, "I am not able to comment on the security features at self-checkout." That doesn't sound very trusting.

Anyway, try this: Buy several of the same item. Instead of running each identical item through the scanner, try scanning the same item as many times as the number you're buying. (You know, just like a human cashier would.) Then wait for some sales associate to scurry up to the self-check to tell you that you have to scan each item individually. It doesn't matter that some of the items have lost their bar code. It doesn't matter if the items are large, bulky, awkward or inconvenient to scan individually. (Think of someone who buys a few 2x4 8' studs and doesn't want to scan each one individually because they're awkward and swinging them around a self-checkout could even be dangerous to others. Think of someone who buys several identical bags of cement mix or water softener salt and who doesn't want to sling 20kg bags around.). Then listen to a silicon sally tell you that you have to place each item in the output area so it can be weighed or measured or whatever, again no matter how awkward, inconvenient or dangerous that may be. Remember this is HD where they sell a large amount of -- you guessed it -- large, bulky, heavy items like lumber, ladders, cement, bulk salt, etc.

Either you trust me to be honest at the self-checkout or you don't. If you trust me then stop treating me like I'm about to steal from you by inconveniencing me with silly protocols that are intended solely to thwart thieves.
Most SCO cashiers will recognize this and reset the system. We are still required to advise you on how to correctly operate the system though. However, there will always be some instances where it is better to go to an actual cashier.
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Sep 10, 2004
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Richmond Hill
xavier3 wrote:
Nov 17th, 2011 11:27 am
I understand your frustration with the issue. This is a training issue with cashiers not being aware that plastic bag fees are not required; from what I've heard this issue has mostly been resolved.
This may be what you've been told, xavier3, but as sillysimms pointed out, it's been going on for more than two years, so it's likely not an "error". You can bet that, if it were a "training issue" that *cost* Home Depot a nickel + HST for each plastic bag, it would have been "resolved" a long time ago.

I prefer to shop at Rona. Rona has more attentive and better-informed customer service, and they don't charge for plastic bags. When I walk out of the local Rona store I don't feel like I've been scammed (as I often did with HD!).
Deal Expert
Jan 7, 2002
16580 posts
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Waterloo, ON
sillysimms wrote:
Nov 17th, 2011 11:21 am
I would be really, really surprised if they remove the 5 cent fee outside of Toronto. They've been doing it since June 2009 so have had 2 1/2 years to change this (if they wanted to...which I doubt!)
sillysimms wrote:
Nov 17th, 2011 11:34 am
Home Depot announced that they were introducing the 5 cent bag fee across Canada - it isn't a training issue at all - cashiers are required to charge 5 cents because that is what HD wants across Canada:...
I realize that this is a sample of one, but I just came back from the HD in Waterloo. I bought a bunch of stuff and paid at a human checkout. Although I had a back pack with me and would have been happy to put my stuff inside it, before I could volunteer to do so, she put all my stuff in a plastic bag. The receipt shows no charge for the bag.

I wonder if they changed their policy on charging for bags outside Toronto or if they have a training issue of a different kind.
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Jan 11, 2008
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bylo wrote:
Nov 29th, 2011 4:59 pm
I realize that this is a sample of one, but I just came back from the HD in Waterloo. I bought a bunch of stuff and paid at a human checkout. Although I had a back pack with me and would have been happy to put my stuff inside it, before I could volunteer to do so, she put all my stuff in a plastic bag. The receipt shows no charge for the bag.

I wonder if they changed their policy on charging for bags outside Toronto or if they have a training issue of a different kind.

That would be nice if they did. We were at one in Mississauga 2 weeks ago and they were still charging the fee (we brought our own bag).

On their site, they still say they charge the fee. Maybe you got a cashier that didn't care...but it would be interesting to see if it continues elsewhere:

http://www.homedepot.ca/eco-options/initiatives

In addition, since June 1, 2009, to help reduce the number of plastic bags our customers use and to help protect the environment, we have collected a $0.05 fee for plastic bags at all retail locations across the country. Net proceeds generated by this fee are allocated to The Home Depot Canada Foundation for community improvement projects.

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