‘What Ever Happened to Paper Receipts?’ Megyn Laments Stores Requiring Email Addresses at Checkout

We’ve all had this experience: You head up to the cashier at a store to purchase something only to be asked to give seemingly every piece of identifiable information about yourself to the clerk before you can pay and leave. 

Megyn had one such experience while traveling with friends in Chicago earlier this month. And on Monday’s show, she shared her story and discussed the merits of good old fashioned paper receipts with Emily Jashinsky, culture editor for The Federalist, and Eliana Johnson, co-host of Ink-Stained Wretches.

Sales Fail

As Megyn explained, she was shopping at a women’s clothing store in the Windy City with her girlfriends when she found a coat she wanted to buy. That’s when it all went downhill.

“I’m going to do the store the courtesy of not naming it, but… I go to the register and I give [the sales associate] my credit card and she says, ‘Email, please,’” Megyn recalled. “I said, ‘I’m not in your system,’ and she said, ‘Oh, no. I need it for your receipt.’ I said, ‘Well, I don’t want to provide that, so just give me a paper receipt.’ She looks at me and says, ‘Well, then it’s final sale.’”

When Megyn inquired as to why the coat would suddenly be “final sale,” the cashier said it’s because she wouldn’t have a receipt. While Megyn acknowledged that she wouldn’t have an email version of the receipt, she was planning to walk out of the store with a paper copy. “I said, ‘I don’t want to be in your system, just give me a paper receipt,’ and she said, ‘Well, what if you lose it?’ I said, ‘That is for me to worry about,’” she shared. “What ever happened to the paper receipt?”

Jashinsky took issue with the sales person’s reasoning. “What if you accidentally delete the email and 30 days goes by and it’s out of your trash can,” she asked. “That doesn’t make any sense.”

A Sign of the Times

Once upon a time, the checkout process was fairly straightforward. “[The clerk] was a young person who didn’t live in a time where we just walked in, we gave the credit card, the credit card worked, you got the hardcopy receipt, and you walked away,” Megyn noted. “Why is everybody asking for your email now when you tried to make a simple purchase at a clothing store?”

Megyn, Jashinsky, and Johnson agreed that the retail experience has become too complicated. “This is my pet peeve, and it also makes the checkout process about 15 minutes long because it’s ‘what’s your email, what’s your address, what’s your cell phone number,’” Johnson said. “And I feel bad because I get chippy with them, but I’m like, ‘I don’t want to be in the system. I don’t want to provide my information. Just let me pay you.’ That’s it. I want a 10-second process.”

Ultimately, Megyn said she understands the personal information is of value to the retailer, but it should not be compulsory. “This is not a friendship… we don’t get to exchange emails, and my home address, and my phone number,” she concluded. “Give me a paper receipt, and, if I lose it, it’s my problem not yours.”

You can check out Megyn’s full interview with Jashinsky and Johnson by tuning in to episode 673 on YouTube, Apple Podcasts, or wherever you like to listen. And don’t forget that you can catch The Megyn Kelly Show live on SiriusXM’s Triumph (channel 111) weekdays from 12pm to 2pm ET.