Manufactured Spending

New Money Order Purchase Policy at Walmart?

It’s been a sh** week. Now the one thing I’ve been able to count on forever has gone up in flames: My local Walmart money order purchase policy. Despite the wildfires raging all over town, the constant smoke in the air and insane traffic, I went ahead and got up at 8:30 this morning to go to Walmart. I don’t usually go this early but figured I’d try and beat the crowds. I get to the store, walk by the cashiers I know, and get to the customer service desk for my usual money order haul. This time, the cashier was someone I don’t usually interact with. Sure, I’ve seen her around but this was probably only the second time she’s rung me up. I should have walked the other way, but I stuck around.

I told her I was buying money orders and needed to fill out the form. Her response? “We don’t do that anymore. It’s all on the computer.” When I came to the store last week, one of my regular cashiers said the same thing. In fact, she tried to ring me up for a $4,000 purchase because she thought it was worth testing to see if 5+ card swipes were enabled. They were not, so she had me fill out the form as usual.

My concern this time around was alleviated when she asked, “how much do you want the first one for?” This made me think it was possible to do multiple transactions. So I got my $2,000 purchase in. That’s when one of the cashiers I saw on the way in (who knows me) walked over and began pulling out the appropriate form for me to fill out. “We don’t do that anymore” she told him. He mentioned that one of the other cashiers (who’s also a manager) told him to have me fill it out. However, she insisted that process is no longer necessary.

The transaction wrapped and I began waiting for my next one when she sort of began starring off. Then she looked at me and said, “anything else”? Well yeah, I needed more money orders. That’s when she informed me that because the process was now “online,” it had to be done in one transaction. I let her know I was here last week and they let me do multiple transactions while still filing out the form. It really pissed me off that I drove out there 30 minutes for this nonsense. She wouldn’t budge.

On top of that, she took my receipt and insisted “this is the store’s copy.” Uhm, no. That’s not how receipts work. Instead, she gave me the smaller receipt that prints out at the bottom of the main one. Finally, I insisted on at least taking a photo of the receipt and she let me do that. I tried to speak with a manager but she insisted, “I’m the Assistant Manager.” Cool. I’ll be sure to mention your name when I fill out the online survey and give this place a 1-star review in every category.

I left and was still pretty pissed on my way home. So I called and spoke to one of the customer service managers. I told her that the “Assistant Manager” didn’t disclose the new 1-transaction rule to me. Until I had already completed it. I had a PayPal debit card and could have made a bigger purchase.

I also told her that she refused to give me my receipt, which was beyond stupid and ridiculous. Receipts are for customers. Period. What if something was wrong with the money orders? What recourse would I have for Walmart to fix it if I didn’t have the receipt? The fact that a manager didn’t know that was beyond absurd. She apologized and told me she found the receipt and would keep it in a safe place for me. 

No word yet on whether I can come back and buy more money orders the way I used to, but I’m pissed now. So I’m leaving the manager a negative review on the survey site. I’m told it takes 10 positive reviews to make up for 1 negative. Negative surveys make a huge difference and get the store manager’s attention. I was one of those people who submitted probably 30 positive reviews a month.

While the store employees are all great, this one moron has screwed up big time. And quite frankly I don’t care about throwing an incompetent Assistant Store Manager under the bus. She should know better. And it’s not because she was enforcing a new policy but because 1.) she didn’t tell me I was limited to one transaction and 2.) she refused to hand over my receipt. In fact, I have two receipts, so this person is going to get mentioned in both of them. I’m really pissed and yes, totally going scorched earth on this one.

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  1. you are showing your true colors here…….what would of Jesus done in this instance?…………….If you would of forgave her and moved on, you would of been a better person for it

  2. Most MS “in the know” recommend saying “thank you” and moving on/not creating a commotion.

    • That’s what you do if they simply read off a policy. In this case, she misinformed me and then refused to give me my receipt. That’s unacceptable and against store policy.

      • Don't Ruin it for Everyone Else

        This isn’t the first report of Walmart not letting people do more than one transaction, so maybe it’s something they’re slowly rolling out nationwide.
        Making a big deal out of it just makes you a bad person though, and I’ll explain why. You could have done two things in this case:

        1. Said thank you and left. She would have forgotten you and you could have gone back later and made sure to avoid her. Then it would be business as usual.

        2. Made a big deal out of it. The issue with this is that there is a decent chance they will have a meeting with her and other managers. There is a chance that she could convince people that this is or should be the policy. They could then flow this out to the whole team. You would then have been responsible for killing this store for everybody.

        I’m sure you’re going to stand by what you did, but I hope someone else reads this and decides not to ruin things for other people in the future.

  3. So sorry for your ordeal :(.

    If you have gift cards though, can’t you just use bill pay and not have to deal with money orders altogether though?


  4. Walmarts around me (at least 4), stopped selling mo with prepaid cards. You have to show them and they have to have a name and a banks name. The only one transaction had been going for at least a year. You are lucky that you put can still go this.

    • I’ve encountered that before but that’s more of a store policy – no hard-coded registers, in my experience. Usually if you wait it out a couple of months, they get new employees and you can try again.

      • It’s not hard coded, but it is more than store coded. According to the always friendly managers, moneygram went to the store and they were the ones who prohibited prepaid cards.

        • It’s always been a store issue and it varied by location. The stores nearby all have a “no gift card” policy. That’s fine. I don’t go to those places. But 1.) several staff members disagreed with her assessment. And the fact that she thinks withholding receipts is ok tells me she’s clueless about store policy. 2.) Another staff member last week told me about the “online” procedure. But she said since it does not accommodate multiple card swipes, I could split my transactions if I fill out the necessary form.

          • I think the associate is wrong and she needs to review the eMSAR forms getting filled which says up to $10,000 per customer BUT it should all be in ONE transaction. Since registers allow split tender up to 4 swipes, how will you go around that unless you’re fine with swiping your bank issued debit card after swiping 3 $500s? Filling out paper forms is passe, the most recent update is all filed ELECTRONICALLY with input of SSN on the keypad. These forms are faxed daily to WM HQ in Bentonville, AR.

            For those interested, check this blogger’s article on eMSAR where there are pics of and the paper form that was filled before they switched to eMSAR.

  5. Kind of acting entitled are we? For something that should be kept hush hush, you’re doing an awful job. Thumbs down for you.

  6. I usually enjoy reading your blog, but being “pissed” that they will not allow more than one transaction and going off complaining to managers about it is a bit ridiculous. Many, MANY people rarely have this luxury, and as another commenter said, if they decide to not allow it there isn’t anything you can do. Get your $2k, be happy with it, and move on to cycle multiple stores like the rest of us. The harder you push, the more likely you are to cause management to stop doing it at all.

    • Not pissed about the policy but the fact that it wasn’t disclosed until AFTER the transaction was completed. And I’m pissed that she refused to hand over my receipt. That’s completely unacceptable – I had an incident two years ago where the WM cashiers told me I owed them money because a cashier accidentally hit “cash” as the payment type. I was able to confirm this was true by looking at my receipt.

      • I don’t think anyone here is disputing the issue with the receipt…

        • Then I don’t see what the problem is. My issue is 1.) the lack of disclosure until after the transaction was completed and 2.) her refusal to provide a receipt. Things go wrong – there could be an issue with a money order and if I don’t have a receipt to prove I purchased it, that could cost me thousands of dollars. These are not unreasonable objections.

  7. You are not going to get a lot of sympathy here. You have been in this game for a long time and should have known that rules change and things don’t always go your way. It takes a lot of self-control to deal with the emotions and anger and simply say “Thank you” and move on. We have to play by the rules and even if the rules are sometimes unfair or even sometimes store employees made up rules on the spot. Then we adapt and move on and there is always another day to find MS opportunity. But ranting and acting entitled and making a big scene in stores won’t really do anything positive.

    • Thank you for not giving me my receipt for a $2,000 purchase? Absurd. Yes, I’m absolutely entitled to a receipt. And to have a cashier actually disclose a policy to me, which she didn’t until the transaction was completed.

  8. Glenn’s right. It’s wise to never act when one is angry.

    • Is it? I guess all those protesters in front of the white house should just go home.

      • Ariana, I’m on your side on this one. No receipt is the worst customer service. Loved the comment about the protesters at the white house. Well said.

        • Thanks Kathleen. We entitled folks gotta stick together. 😉

          • Finally your true colors are showing really, really brightly. Entitlement definitely doesn’t look good on you, Ariana. But not surprised to have you finally show your true colors. Here’s to hoping more avenues get shut down for you, with this entitles attitude.
            Move along now. Maybe you should set up a protest outside the Walmart, with all the extra time you’ll have on your hands.

          • Thanks cupcake. I certainly don’t have as much time on my hands as someone who leaves two consecutive rambling comments on a blog he doesn’t like.

  9. I am sorry for you, but overall – good! Why not just get 2 x $1000 in one transaction like most people do? People doing this huge volume attract attention to the store (I am sure you are familiar with Moneygram investigating certain stores and the end result), annoy cashiers and customers. You might work harder to get your free miles, but better this way than being completely shut down. They probably implemented this policy because of people who do this unreasonable volume.

    • That’s what I did. This store has always been ok with large MO purchases as long as the paperwork was filled out. This manager was clueless – I’m pretty sure this “policy” she’s talking about isn’t actually in place (two employees contradicted her on it). Plus, what kind of manager doesn’t know that receipts need to be handed over to customers?

      • There is definitely a new policy that most, if not all WMs, have started to implement allowing up to $10K MO with filling forms electronically including input of SSN via keypad. However, since there is a limit of 4 swipes, MSers can only do up to $2K in one transaction. Instead of griping, consider yourself lucky that your gravy train quit running just now while others had issues for a month now. Many stores have also refused to accept VGCs for MOs while others are only allowed ONE swipe.

        Hopefully, when you have calmed down, you realize the AM is just doing her job. You have a right to ask for your receipt but you’re not entitled to buy $10K or more MOs just because they allowed you in the past.

        • Thanks to my “griping” this store has made an exception for MS’ers. Despite the 4-swipe rule and electronic process, we’re still allowed 5 transactions. I went back there today and there were two other MS’ers buying their MO’s with no problems. Again, I’m not complaining about them enforcing the rules. She should have disclosed the 1-transaction limit to me. And she should have given me my receipt. The fact that she screwed up on these two fronts angered me and I vented about it in the post. Did I sound like a jerk? Sure, but who doesn’t, every once in a while.

  10. I’ve been limited to $2K per WM in my area for some time, though I’ve never asked to fill out the form. One of my WMs started NOT giving me the receipt. Only one. It’s just bizarre for all of the reasons you mention, not the least of which is that I have no record of the MO that lists the cards that were used.

    I just stood there the first time it happened, and said, “I have to have a receipt.” They printed a “duplicate receipt” but since then, I have not been able to cajole them to give me a receipt – only the “tiny little printout.” I’m guessing that the little printed receipt can be brought back to the store in the event of something going wrong; just that it’s that much harder to keep track of everything.

    • It’s definitely the case of an uninformed staff member. Good for you for sticking to your guns. A receipt is absolutely necessary – especially considering the issues I’ve had in the past related to MO purchases.

  11. I’ve had this discussion with Walmart employees so many times I stopped counting. The rule has always been as stated in the paperwork that if the total amount of MO’s is between $3k and $10k or if there are more than one transaction, the PW has to be filled out. So technically $3k in two transactions requires paperwork although not enforced by my local WM until now. The new computer system triggers the reporting for transactions over $3k, which we never get to with 4×500. Paper copies are not supposed to be filled out anymore according to them. I’m in the same boat, it used to be a breeze, now it’s 2k in one transaction or 3k in two if the person doesn’t care enough. I get turned down more often than not for a second transaction lately.
    And yes, both receipt are for the customer, I don’t care how a store retains a copy for themselves.

  12. Wrong place wrong time. Your rant is valid and also cloaked in the thirst for blood. I hope everything works out.

  13. Amazing to see your entitled reaction here. I’m ashamed for you. Embarrassed, but certainly not surprised.

  14. The WM near me started the new approach where they keep the receipt several months ago. A different WM near me stopped allowing debit card purchases this week.

  15. Oh, and another thing: Remember your own tweet from a couple weeks ago; your advice goes a long way in the world:

    Jul 31

    Moral of the story (and I can’t believe this still has to be explained to adults): Put yourself in other people’s shoes. Then correct your behavior accordingly.

  16. You have been in the MS game for years now so MSers are expecting you to know that everything can change in a blink; what worked for you last week may no longer work this week.

    “Well yeah, I needed more money orders. That’s when she informed me that because the process was now “online,” it had to be done in one transaction. I let her know I was here last week and they let me do multiple transactions while still filing out the form. It really pissed me off that I drove out there 30 minutes for this nonsense. She wouldn’t budge.”

    there are lots of DPs online on FT and reddit that although they still allow $10K of MOs, this has to be done in ONE transaction and with your plan of swiping $500 GCs, you’re only limited to $2K. Be glad you can still do $2K because a lot of MSers reported they were limited to just ONE swipe. Period, no if’s, no but’s. Therefore, it may be nonsense to you but THIS WM has received the update and they are just enforcing it now and you’re pissed with this development. They’re just doing their job; no need to take it personal and thrown the AM under the bus. Too bad, so sad that it totally ruins your plans of draining $10K or more once a week just by filling a form. You may have to find another unicorn store that hasn’t gotten the update on proper enforcement of eMSAR. If you google eMSAR Walmart form, you will see what cashiers see on their screen.

    • Try: Limited to one swipe, and “Can I see the card you’re using again?” AFTER the one swipe. My only local WM has been onto and actively trying to catch people trying to do “our hobby” for the past several months.

    • Again, my issue here is that she did not tell me until afterwards. I would purchase a bigger amount than $2k if I had known I was limited to one transaction. Also, receipt withholding goes against store policy.

      • So you’ll proceed with 3 swipes of $500 GCs and the last swipe with your bank DC for $8500 to fulfill your $10K MO? I’ll give you the benefit of the doubt since the store has allowed you doing multiple transactions with 4 swipes on each so you can drain up to $10K or possibly more since you’re friends with the staff.

  17. Whoa.. Never expected this tone out of you.
    Relax and try again. Forget about the stupid receipt.

  18. usa-warrior

    You will be OK but this location is, probably, done for you.

    • Yup and with her attitude she probably burned it for others. Sad.

      I always tell them how many MOs I am doing so we are all on the same page. My go to WM is still working and the customer service reps always thank me for my business. A couple have told me I am so much nicer than the other people that buy MOs. A little kindness goes a long way cupcake.

    • Nope. Just went back there today and was able to do my usual $10k batch.

  19. Receipt issue is extremely valid. The remainder of this post is – well – just wow.

    • It was your fault for not saying how many MOs you were doing in the first place. I’ve seen this new system and it works great.

      • Yeah you’re right. I told her I was buying mo’s and “I need to fill out the form.” That’s shorthand at this store for “I’m buying $10k.” I’ve dealt with this person before, but you’re right – I shouldn’t have made assumptions about what she knew.

  20. Why are you using still messing around with MO’s, you can do alot more volume with gift card reselling. I sell all my cards with theplasticmerchant. I have done over $1000 this month alone, all from the comfort of my house! I submit my cards all electronically on the website and I get paid in less than two weeks.

  21. OMG you got up at 0830 in the morning, that poor poor woman. Cry me a river

  22. Naomi Vanessa

    Wow….what an entitled c**t muffin, how do you still have a blog? :rolls eyes:
    You made it sound like you had to drive through a fire…poor baby, you got up at 8:30, got in your carriage, and the poors at WM wouldn’t bow to you

  23. @Graz – Please show me your ways to generate $1000 volume monthly – else I’ll have stop flying, can’t even afford coach for international trip – will need to travel in Brandon or Sam’s luggage. I’m going to cry river inside NYC manholes and flood NYC with my sorrow.

  24. Naomi Vanessa

    Everyone is laughing at you on KTHGA :

  25. FindingMyPossible

    This is the issue I brought up on /r/churning and to MillionMileGuy. Stores are going electronic with their MOTRs and since it takes $3k in MOs to trigger this there doesn’t seem to be a way to fill one out across multiple $2k transactions. Along with policies from earlier this year that limit you to 4-swipes and 1 transaction, this avenue of liquidation is about to dry up everywhere. The only thing I could think of is to pay an additional $1002.64 in cash to trigger the MOTR and hope it allows editing of the total purchase amount so the cashiers feel that they are still following policy (when they really aren’t).

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