Dealing with money can be stressful. It is easier to make mistakes when transactions are not in your native language. Take your time. Making mistakes can be costly. Many customers will not tell you if you make a mistake. Some companies will make you pay for shortages. Customers will be more patient if you are honest. Tell them you are training. They will also appreciate your effort to learn their language. Say, "Please bear with me. I'm still learning." As you become comfortable with the currency and the payment system your service in English will speed up.
Cashier Transactions: Language
Here are some expressions to use on the job. Practise them with a friend or family member. Refer to the vocabulary list if you don't know a word.
- Do you have a discount card today?
- Are you using any coupons today?
- I will need to see some ID to sell you a lottery ticket. (for age restricted items)
- I'm sorry but your card has been declined. Would you like to use another form of payment? (when a credit or debit card has insufficient funds.)
- Will there be anything else for you today?
- Is this everything today?
- And how was everything today? (service industry)
- Will that be cash or charge?
- How will you be paying today?
- Your total comes to $16.50.
- From twenty...and here's $3.50 change.
- Please swipe your card.
- I just need to see some photo ID to verify your check.
- Would you like your receipt in the bag?
Sample Transactions: Speaking Practice
Find an English friend to practise with. Take turns being cashier and customer.
Sample Cash transaction
Cashier: Hello. Is this everything for you today?
Customer: Yes. Just a few items today.
Cashier: Did you find everything you were looking for?
Customer: Yes, thank you.
Cashier: Okay. Your total comes to $8.70. (say "eight seventy" or "eight dollars and seventy cents")
Customer: Can you break a fifty? I'm afraid I don't have anything smaller.
Cashier: No problem. From fifty..$41.30 is your change. (say "forty-one thirty" or "forty-one dollars and thirty cents")
Customer: Thank you.
Cashier: Thank you. See you again.
Sample Credit Card transaction
Cashier: Here is your order, sir. Two pepperoni pizzas. Will there be anything else?
Customer: No, that's great thanks.
Cashier: Okay. Will that be cash or charge today?
Cashier: Okay. Please swipe your card in the machine...Sorry, can you try again please.
Customer: Is there a problem with my card?
Cashier: No, it's going through fine this time. I'll just need you to sign here, please.
Customer: There you go.
Cashier: Thank you Mr. Bates. Enjoy your pizza!
Cashier Transactions: Listening Practice
Listen to the customer enquiries below that take place at a checkout area. Read the three possible cashier responses for each enquiry. Which is the correct response? Check your answers.1. Customer:
- "I'm only buying a chocolate bar today. Can I use my debit card?"
- "I'm new in town and I'll be coming to this store often. Do you have shopper discount cards?"
- "Can I please have a pack of cigarettes? I'll take the small red pack on the top right hand side, please."