26 May 2009

The Redemption of Trader Joe's

A new Trader Joe's opened up in Virginia Beach a few weeks ago, and I made the mistake of trying to shop there with a toddler on opening day.  It was absolute insanity.  The store was so crowded, you couldn't even get your cart down the aisles to shop.  And once you did shop, there was about an hour wait to check out.  I ended up having to abandon my (full) cart and leave empty-handed when Austin had a complete meltdown.  I can't say I blame him -- it was hot, crowded, and loud.

When I got home that day, I sent an email to Trader Joe's corporate office to complain.  It was just a very poorly handled grand opening -- no crowd control, novice cashiers ringing people up, poor organization.  Surprisingly, I got a response in about 24 hours, and it was from the store manager, not some anonymous corporate typist.  Basically, he said they knew they'd screwed up.  Apparently the turnout for the opening exceeded everyone's expectations.  He offered me a gift card to compensate me for my lousy experience.

I finally made the trek down to the store today, and was totally stoked to see that the gift card was for FIFTY BUCKS!  (I was expecting ten, tops -- and I would have been fine with that!)  Now, fifty dollars may not seem like a lot to most people, but to me...wow.  That's a big load off my grocery budget.  I picked up pasta for Austin, some frozen stuff, a gallon of milk, and a really cool insulated grocery bag.  And I still have money left on the card!

So, Joe's, you're off the poopie list.  I'll see you soon to spend my remaining $17. 


  1. $50 off a grocery bill is sweet! Glad to hear they made up for your lousy experience on opening day.

  2. woo hoo. I have yet to make it out there.

  3. That's awesome that they took care of you so well. I love their return policy: even if you eat a portion of a product you can still return it.