Life Advice



Saying 'Thank You' at the Grocery Store

Annie Lane on

Dear Readers: We recently ran a letter from someone who complained that cashiers at grocery stores rarely thank them, the customers. I heard from many of you who have worked as cashiers at supermarkets, and I am grateful for your letters as they provide a firsthand account of the other perspective.

Below are two of those letters. The second letter addresses what it was like to be a grocery store worker during the pandemic, and the first goes almost 30 years back and discusses what it was like to work at a grocery store at that time.

Looks like we are still dealing with the same issues 30 years later. I said it in my first letter, and I will say it again: Saying thank you both ways is always a good idea. It's just showing a bit of gratitude for another human being, and being grateful is a good thing for everyone -- always.

Dear Annie: I worked for Publix Supermarket in the 1990s. I started on the line and worked as an office cashier.

I usually said "thank you" to the clients. One woman who I didn't thank said, "You're welcome." This woman was a snob and did expect a "thank you." She also came through my line a couple of other times.

I appreciated your response to the letter writer, and I do understand how she feels when the cashier doesn't thank her. I also had a regular customer who told me, "I don't see why I should thank a cashier for ringing up my groceries because they are just doing their job."

There is a lack of appreciation and "thank you's" all the way around. -- A Cashier


Dear Annie: I want to thank you for your response to "Saying Thank You." There is an entitled attitude suggesting, "I'm buying groceries, which in turn means that I'm paying your wages," which is so rude and disrespectful. I work at a grocery store chain, and when the pandemic started, and no one knew what it was, I was at work.

There were mass closings of schools, offices, restaurants and basically everything but hospitals and grocery stores. Chaos ensued, and the employees at the grocery stores risked their lives and their family's lives so people like that customer would have access to groceries. It was a traumatic time for the grocery store workers having to work and risk all while the majority of the country stayed home safely watching Netflix, learning to bake bread, playing games, etc.

They did all this while being paid by the government to stay home and enjoy. How quickly people forget what we went through, and we received nothing from the government as extra pay, as they said they'd do. "Saying Thank You" has to get off her high horse and get a hobby. Some cashiers are young kids, and some are people just getting by, so thank you for your response to the expectations of this entitled writer. -- A Grocery Store Pandemic Survivor


"How Can I Forgive My Cheating Partner?" is out now! Annie Lane's second anthology -- featuring favorite columns on marriage, infidelity, communication and reconciliation -- is available as a paperback and e-book. Visit for more information. Send your questions for Annie Lane to




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