16 Movie Theater Employees Share The Most Annoying Things Customers Do. Turn Off Your Phone!
Everybody loves a trip to the movies, even if it does get a bit pricey. But there's nothing worse than being behind a "problem customer" in line. The ones who have to bring all of their drama to the cinema where we're all just trying to escape for a couple of hours.
Here are some of the things that annoy the people behind the scenes that keep the movies open.
Many thanks to reddit user for posing this question. Check out more answers from the source at the end of the article!
1/16. Toss garbage on the floor like nobody has to pick it up. The smell of popcorn simmering in old soda will never fully leave my subconscious.
2/16. On a lighter note, there was one lady who forgot what movie she was going to see. After we figured out it was one of the Twilights, she informed me, "I've been calling it Sexy Vampires all day."
3/16. When people get personally offended that we are upselling/suggestive selling. IT'S OUR JOB. We literally get suspended if a secret shopper catches us NOT doing that. Is it a shit job? Yes. Would we rather go about like robots and not get suspended? Yes.
One time, this bridge troll comes up and is like: "Large."
Me: "A large what?"
Me: "... What would you like to drink?"
Her: sigh "A COKE. LIGHT ICE!"
I'm thinking, ok, she's a b*tch, I'm not going to suggest a bigger size, she might kill me. "Here's your drink."
Seriously, people. A customer who uses complete sentences is a good customer indeed. I am a person, not a vending machine. "What size?"
Her: "Ugh, larrrrrrge!"
Me: "Okayyy, any butter flavoring on that?"
Her: "NO. -_-"
So I get her stuff. Out of habit, I say "Alrighty, any nachos or M&Ms with that?"
She loses it. "NO. If I wanted anything else, I would have said, hey, THIS. IS. WHAT. I. WANT."
I lose it. "OHHHHHH. IS THAT HOW THAT WORKS!?"
Her: "Yes. That's how that works."
I swipe her card: "Straws and napkins are at the condiment stand, thank you!"
4/16. She proceeded to call back after she left and threaten the manager who she spoke with saying that he was lucky, because she was "about to hit him in the face and f*ck him up" with security literally standing next to him. Kid on her hip the entire time.
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5/16. Unnecessarily angry people. I understand that if something bad happens, people aren't going to be chipper and smiling, but there is absolutely no need to yell and cuss and be toxic. I will completely bust my ass and break notable company rules to make you 110% happy if you are calm and respectful, but if you treat me poorly, I will see to it that you get the shortest straw I can possibly give you without it coming back to haunt me.
6/16. This was almost a daily occurrence for me:
Customer - "Excuse me, the movie in theater 5 hasn't started yet."
Me - "Well what time is it supposed to start?"
Customer - "6:00."
Me - "And what time is it now?"
Customer - "5:54."
Me - _
7/16. Former cineplex employee here, if your order comes up as 6.66, please don't make me charge you extra for something to change the amount, it's not an omen it's junk food.
8/16. Former employee here. There are so many.
- Complain about prices - I don't set them, I'm sorry it's so damn expensive
- Get mad when you tell them to put their phone away
- Ask for refunds after watching the entire movie
- Sex in the theater
- "There's not enough seats for our group to sit together."
These are just general things, but there are so many more specific instances where customers pissed me off. Like the doctor who told one of my employees that he wished her mother would die. Or the racist lady who called the cops and insisted that one of our black employees had called her a bitch and assaulted her.
I miss it sometimes.
9/16. I loved the time that I spent working in a movie theater, but I rarely miss some of the customers. Some examples:
People who brought in food hidden in bags, then left the trash. More specifically people who brought in chicken wings and then left the bones on the floor under the seat.
At my theater, we had a military and a senior discount (no student discount though). It's inconvenient when you say you're military AFTER you purchase your ticket. It's also irritating when you get offended if I ask you if you'd like the senior discount. I realize you spent thousands on Botox, but it's clear you're at least 70.
No you can't have a refund because the R-rated horror film you're watching is scaring your 2 year old.
Picking up trash isn't fun when you could have thrown it away yourself, but spelling out "HEY" in popcorn on the floor sure as hell isn't cute. Any bad customer stories I have all come from around the same time of year - the premiere of Eclipse.
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10/16. Former movie theater box officer manager here...
One I really hated was when customers accused us of overselling tickets because there were no seats left. No, we don't oversell. Our computer tells us how many seats are left per auditorium and we halt ticket sales for a showing when it sells at 90%... so quite the opposite.
Sorry you don't want to sit in the front or not sit with your date. Get there earlier.
11/16. Every time they complain about the prices to do and say I am committing "highway robbery." For one, I don't set the prices. Also, you do NOT have to buy popcorn and a soda. It's your choice. Stop complaining.
12/16. My theater is 21 and up only (we serve alcohol and corporate policy allows no exception for easier compliance with the liquor laws) and the amount of entitled parents that think they can get an exception to this is amazing.
Yes your child is an infant and we assume you won't give them alcohol. They are still under 21 and aren't allowed into the theater. Beyond the alcohol reason, a lot of people come to our theaters to get away from kids because they know how restrictive our policy is, so exceptions are not something we are interested in. Also, we have physical signs in and out of our building as well as alerts online about our policy.
Worst customer situation was on Mother's Day the first year I worked there. We had two families come in each with an obviously underage person. The 1st one was a mom, dad, and teenage son. They had pre-purchased tickets but told them that we would have to refund them since their son was underaged.
The mom started yelling at me about it then moved on to the manager when he came up. They kept trying to beg for an exception, since it was mother's day, then demanded a higher up manager to yell at when they were refused.
Meanwhile another guest came up to the ticket desk, a middle-aged woman, followed shortly by a young girl around 10-11 years old. After asking a few questions about the theater, the mom tried to buy tickets for her and her daughter. Now the first family is still up there now yelling at the GM, so yet again I had to tell someone that they couldn't come in due to the age restriction.
This woman exploded!!
She started slamming her fists on the desk and screaming that we were discriminating against her because she was a single mother, that we were ruining her mother's day, that she was going to tell her story to all the news outlets/Oprah/Ellen and have us closed down for disrespecting her.
The bright side to this was that the first family took one look at this woman and calmly took their refund without further argument. The other woman stood in our lobby for 30 minutes yelling at all three of our on-duty managers until they could get her escorted out of the building.
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13/16. Former Movie Theater Employee Here:
I. When I needed to card younger-looking people for R-Rated movies and they'd say something to the effect of: I left it elsewhere...and then they yelled at me like it was my fault.
II. Kids who made it obvious they were gonna try to sneak into an R-rated movie.
III. Couples too lazy for a baby sitter so they brought their kids (babies-12 year-olds) to scary movies.
14/16. Armed robbery. (The movie theater I worked at was in a pretty bad neighborhood.)
15/16. Incredibly long box office line.
One of the busiest cinemas in the state.
Approaches front counter after 15+ minute wait.
"What movies are you guys playing today?"
16/16. "I need twelve tickets." "Ok, which movie?" "Uhhh.... Shitstorm 9"
After transaction is complete.
"You didn't give me the children's discount for seven of these tickets, also I'm military and my mom's a senior and I only wanted nine tickets."
My job f*cking rocks. I work under great people and I get all the free movies I want. I regularly take home 10 gallon bags full of popcorn too. A couple customers may be a pain, but for every one person yelling at you there are like 15 behind them looking at you with eyes that say "I'm so sorry you're having to deal with this".
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Minimum wage is often paid by some of the most physically and emotionally intensive work—service industry jobs. Having to work in a hot kitchen all day or deal with irate customers while being paid less than you need to survive is not exactly the best situation to be in.