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What were the best and worst consumer experiences you had this week?

Recently, I launched a best and worst consumer experience feature on The Survive and Thrive Boomer Guide.

I think looking weekly at our best and worse experiences as consumers will help us learn from our successes and mistakes.

Each week, we have dozens of consumer happenings, some good and some bad.
Here’s one each of mine for this week:

My best consumer experience: Shopping at a 50 percent off sale

Store IMG_2034

Thursday I went to Bellingham to shop at Diva Boutique, my niece Suzi’s dress shop. She was having a half-off, 10th Anniversary Sale.

It enjoyed myself tremendously. Suzi served champagne and cake. I bought a new pair of black pants and a black skirt at bargain prices.

An added bonus: I was able to visit with Suzi and her family that evening. Tyler is 5 years old and Savanah is 3. What fun.

My worst consumer experience: Spoiled dried mangoes from Safeway

Mangoes Dried pix082109_1

Before my trip to Bellingham, I went to Safeway to buy organic nuts. I found some and also picked out a package of dried mangoes.

The Brazil nuts were old and not very tasty. However, the Tree of Life mangoes were terrible. They were fermented and smelly. I couldn’t eat them.

When I returned the mangoes, I asked to see the manager of the Safeway store. I told him that the Tree of Life nuts and dried fruit needed to be rotated more frequently.

He said nothing could be done about it. The mangoes and Brazil nuts were about two days from the expiration date.

I asked him to let the company know that I had made the complaint and that I was an unhappy customer.

I was able to obtain a refund, but the Safeway managers certainly need better customer service training. They should say, “Thank you for letting us know about this. We’ll let the company know about your complaint.”

Copyright 2009, Rita R. Robison, Consumer Specialist


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Yesterday I had a positive consumer experience at Old Navy. I needed a size that wasn't available so I asked a friendly clerk and she checked on the computer, found where the size was stored and got a ladder to retrieve it for me. This was the second Old Navy I visited that day, looking for the same item. At the first store the clerk didn't check the computer, she just told me that they were out of the size I needed. It made me wonder after the help I got at the second store if they might have had some after all.


Hi Lisa,

Good customer service is great, isn't it. It makes my day.


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