October 18th, 2007

Not giving a shit (DLM)
  • cschick

Bad Service at BP/Amoco

Today, as we do probably two mornings a week, I and my husband pulled up to the BP/Amoco near the entrance ramp to the expressway to fill up our car. He got out of the car, swiped his card in the pump, went through all the rigmarole the screen tells you to, and started pumping gas. I believe that he then started washing the windows.

The pump abruptly stopped at $15. Since his car has a 13 gallon tank and we were probably about down at 2 gallons, that wasn't right. He messed around with the pump, trying to restart it, and then went into the station itself.

When he got up to the counter to ask what was going on, he was immediately met with an accusation: "You pumped that guy's gas!"

Apparently, the attendant had pre-authorized another car for $15, but had done it on the wrong pump. (Ours instead of his.) Somehow, that was my husband's fault instead of the attendant's.

My husband pointed out that he'd swiped his card and it had apparently authorized the card, but the attendant insisted that it hadn't and that he'd "taken" the other guy's gas.

My husband offered to pay for the $15 and then continue pumping his gas (while they pre-authorized the other guy on the correct pump), but the attendant then informed him that the only way to correct this situation would be for him to swipe his card at the other guy's pump and allow the guy to pump his gas on my husband's credit card.

Knowing how difficult it is to stop pumping at an exact money amount when you're pumping without a pre-set limit on the pump--and knowing that he had no way of stopping it if the guy just continued pumping past his $15--my husband refused. He then came out to the car to tell me why he'd vanished into the gas station for such a long time, and when he re-entered, the manager had come up to the counter.

She also rather hostilely insisted that the only way to resolve this situation was for him to swipe his card at the other guy's pump and allow the other guy to pump his gas on my husband's credit card. That this was policy, and people did this all the time. My husband again refused, and offered several ways for him to pay the $15--via cash, credit (and then LEAVE because we weren't going to be pumping any more gas there now).

Finally, the manager got huffy and allowed him to pay the $15 on his credit card (via the old-fashioned carbon swipe, not the computer), and pre-authorized the other guy on his pump for $15. My husband came out to the car and we left.

This is not, by far, the only gas station in the area. In fact, it's not usually the cheapest one either. But it's in a good location for getting gas during heavy traffic: we turn into it across a busy road with a left turn signal, and then make a right turn out and drive straight onto the entrance ramp to the expressway. All of the other ones would require an unprotected left turn across extremely heavy/busy traffic. But I think we'll be doing that from now on.