13 ways to annoy sample servers at Costco (from a server)

13 ways to annoy sample servers at Costco (from a server)

We recently cancelled our Costco membership when it came up for renewal. It basically was not worth it for us (we need to drive too far to the store in Victoria and we prefer to spend family time doing other things).

One thing we will miss are the great samples and delicious freebies.

Samples of Southern Comfort

On Reddit, a sample server named Roland details 13 ways in which some customers get on his last nerve.

1. Why you need to have samples on napkins.

Samples are served on napkins or plates for your convenience and for sanitary reasons.
Many members take the food item being sampled and leave the napkin/ plate on the serving tray, thinking that it can be reused. In reality, not only does it have to be thrown in the garbage, but under the health code I’m also required to discard any other samples on the tray and sanitize it due to cross-contamination.

2. Throwing garbage in a can with no bag!

Yes, there is usually a garbage can next to my sample table and as members of (redacted) you are more than welcome to use it. If there isn’t a bag in the garbage can for whatever reason, I’d really appreciate it if you found another place to discard your trash.

3. No samples to children unless adult is present.

If I don’t give a sample to your child, it’s not because they’re ugly, didn’t ask nicely, or that I didn’t care about them – it’s because a parent isn’t at the table with them. And why are you letting your kids run around a warehouse club unsupervised anyway?

4. Don’t ask me for directions.

I don’t actually work for the club, I’m employed by an independent contractor that provides promotional event services (i.e. sample tables). No, I do not know where almonds, bulk hamburger patties, mattresses, or (insert product here) is, nor is it my job to.

5. Don’t make assumptions.

Please do not make assumptions about my abilities and life aspirations based on my job.

6. Please don’t stare at me impatiently.

I will serve new samples as quickly as I can, passive aggressively staring at me with an irritated and impatient look on your face will not make it go any faster.

7. Don’t demand a fresh sample of of the tray.

The samples on the serving tray are exactly the same as what is in the main product container I’m serving out of, the tray and table are also sanitized to standards that well exceed what the state requires. Believe me, I’ve worked multiple food service type jobs and (redacted) is anal about doing everything by the book.

8. Please turn down a sample, nicely.

If offered you a sample of a product and you’re not interested, a simple “no, thank you” is sufficient.

9. I am required to check IDs for certain samples.

We are required by state law and store policy to check ID’s of every single patron requesting said samples. If you are 50, 60, 70, or 80 years old and I ask for your ID, please accept it as a compliment.

10. I don’t want to get into a philosophical lecture with you.

If you’re opposed to drinking on religious grounds then don’t drink.

11. Common courtesy is important.

“I’m hungry” or “Oh nom noms” (yes, somebody did say that to me) are not acceptable answers to the question “how are you today, sir?”

12. Please don’t take all the samples.

It is extremely inconsiderate to take all the samples from the tray, especially if there are people waiting. If you want another sample, that’s fine, but please get back in line and wait your turn. (This is not directed at parents who take multiple samples back to share with their kids.)

13. The samples are not a substitute for a lunch.

Samples are not supposed to be a free lunch – they’re an opportunity to try products you may not be familiar with or are new to the club and see if they’re something you’re interested in.

Have any of our readers ever had to hand out samples?

Steven Zussino

Steven Zussino is the co-founder of Grocery Alerts Canada. He loves to help Canadians save money on groceries. He also runs the blog, CanadianTravelHacking.com.