Card Factory Disappoints

What do you carry around in your wallet? I myself carry my cards (my account, joint account, credit card) and usually a few coins for car parking. Today I found myself with just the cards and no coins. Not usually a problem.

The day had been going great. The children had been behaving themselves. The new fridge freezer had been delivered on time and looked great. It was time for shopping and running errands. First was a trip to the post office to post a package and card, next was a trip to Boots to get some more formula powder for Samuel. And last on the list was to get a card from a card shop. Card Factory is usually a good place to go for cheap cards, so that’s where I went. I picked out the “Baby Boy” card that was appropriate and took it to the till. Since I had about 15p in coins left I had no option but to offer over my credit card as payment method. I was then promptly told that I could not pay for cards for any transaction under 5 pounds. And that was that, I wasn’t offered any choices or suggestions from the sales assistant, he just took the card and put it to one side and proceeded to cancel the transaction on his till. I was left to leave the store with double pushchair without a card!
Whilst on my way out I wondered how customers were supposed to know they couldn’t pay by card for transactions less than 5 pounds. I looked in the Card Factory shop window and could only find information about various things, a head office address, a warning regarding taking card in adverse weather conditions, no eating or drinking and no shopping trolleys, and that was it. I went back to the sales assistant and asked how customers were supposed to know about this minimum transaction amount, he then pointed to a sticker on the till. It read:

Card Factory, Please Note we only accept credit card & switch transactions for purchases over £5.00 Thank you for your valued custom

I certainly didn’t feel like I wanted to give them my valued customer since all I wanted was a 59 pence congratulations card. I then asked if the head office address was the one I had seen in the front window and was advised it was.

Now I didn’t actually mind that there was a limit on how much I needed to spend (even though 5 pounds is a little steep!), it was the fact that my custom was cut short because I didn’t have cash. There was no suggestions or alternatives offered to me, the sales person just left it up to me to decide what to do while he cancelled the transaction that he seemed to be more concerned about. He could have suggested I purchase more items to make it up to the minimum spend, or given me information about where the nearest cash machine may be, or even apologised and explained why that limit was in place. It was this simple lack of consideration that turned my day from a good one, to one where I felt hard done by.

As I left on my way I had a few options going through my mind… I could go and get a 20 pound note from the cash machine and buy the 59 pence card with it and hopefully clean out Card Factory’s till of change. I could go home without anything. But I decided to go with my last option of going to Clinton Cards and getting the card I needed from there. As I arrived I asked the nice shop assistant if there was a minimum limit to spend if paying by card and was nicely told that the limit was 1 pound. So I carefully selected the card I needed and paid for it by credit card without any problems.

Thank you Clinton Cards, and boo to you Card Factory.

I am still undecided whether I should still write to Card Factory at Century House, Brunel Road, Wakefield 41 Industrial Estate, Wakefield, West Yorkshire, WF2 0XG and explain what has happened, or whether I should just ignore the shop in Fleet Hampshire altogether. I started going off Card Factory back at Christmas when I found I couldn’t actually get in and around the shop with my double buggy because the isles were too narrow. I hope no disabled people in wheelchairs want to get their Christmas cards from that shop! Thanks, but no thanks Card Factory of Fleet.

4 thoughts on “Card Factory Disappoints”

  1. Do you know how infuriating it is to receive a £20 for at 59p card! It’s not the cashier’s fault. The Card Factory doesn’t care how the money gets into their tills – its just ‘cleans out’ the till for the poorly paid shop assistant who then has to change up the next £5/£10 note in 50p pence pieces. They then probably get flustered, give out the wrong change, have a till discrepancy and a disciplinary – all because of your spite. It also costs the Card Factory nearly as much to process the credit card payment than it is for the cost of the greeting card and its usually 20p for a debit card transaction. Have some sympathy for the cashiers – they are not there to tell you how to get the money and they probably have a queue a mile long of customers who do not wish to stand waiting whilst someone pays for a 59p card on a credit/debit card. I bet your Clinton card cost more than double of what your card at the Card Factory would have cost so who had the last laugh!!

    1. Thanks for your comments HellBells. I do happen to agree that it would have been infuriating for the cashier, but then their attitude to my situation was not very desireable. There was no queue of people waiting, just me. I have since needed to purchase a single card for a special occasion and went back to Clinton Cards knowing that again I had no change about my person. I would certainly say that Card Factory does have it’s advantages on card prices and that if bulk purchasing or cash transactions are your thing then yes it propably does out do other card stores, but until I need to make a purchase of 20 “It’s a Girl” cards then I am still staying away from Card Factory. That’s just my personal choice of course and I am not stopping anyone from entering a Card Factory shop.

      1. I just had to comment after reading these remarks. First of all i useto be a retail manager and know it can be annoying when someone wants to pay using a card for something less than £1. However, if it were my staff they would have apologised, advised where the nearest cash machine was and offered to save your card behind the counter. How long does it take to do this Hellbells even if you do have a queue. I would hate to come to your shop, perhaps you are a card factory manager?This member of staff was obviously not trained in customer service, I never shop in card factory shops anymore, the old adage goes – you get what you pay for and I would pay for a Clinton card and their shopping experience anyday! And as for having the last laugh, if card factory keeps treating customers like this it wont be them, no matter how cheap there cards are!

  2. I am a sales assistant at card factory and it is infuriating when customers are paying with £20 notes for a 59p card because your only allowed certain amounts in your till and it costs 50p to pay for a transaction. Even though most of card factory staff have good customer service thats not what our store concentrates on we are a cheap and cheerful card shop not selfridges and we go yhrough approx. 8000 cards a day and they need filling up so next time you want a congradulations card theres 1 there

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