Aldi employees told Insider the main things customers shouldn't do while shopping.
Abandoning your cart or putting items where they don't belong creates more work for the staff.
Try not to enter the store at closing time, but if you do, use the self-checkout machine.
Aldi is a German supermarket chain known for its low-priced groceries and frequent sales on home essentials.
If you're looking to have the best possible shopping experience at Aldi, you should be aware of a few things that can make life easier for you and the staff.
Here are 10 things that you should never do in the store, according to current and former employees.
Insider has agreed to refer to the current Aldi employee by only their nicknames for privacy and job-security concerns (though their identity is known to Insider). Insider has verified that both employees work for/have worked for Aldi.
There's no use in asking employees to 'check in the back'
Current Aldi employee JK told Insider that one of their least-favorite experiences is customers asking employees to check the stock room for items that aren't on the store's shelves.
"If a product is out of stock on the shelves, we don't have a secret stash in the back," JK said. "It's frustrating when skeptical customers think they know the store's inventory better than the employees."
If an item is out of stock, JK recommended stopping by the next day to see if the store has received a new shipment.
Avoid shopping too close to the end of store hours
Andrew Bronson, a former Aldi employee and chief executive officer of Hard Money Property, told Insider that continuing to shop after closing time results in a longer shift and more work for the staff.
"Most Aldi employees understand that it can be annoying to drive all the way to the store to find out that it's about to close, but please respect the staff by doing your best not to shop past the posted hours of operation," Bronson said.
If you do need to run into the shop just before closing time, try to limit the number of items you purchase and use one of the self-checkout machines, if possible.
Don't forget to look for posted sales guidelines
Aldi is known for its deals, but those discounts often come with rules that limit the number of sale items each customer can purchase.
JK said some customers ignore or don't understand these limits, which can make an employee's day more difficult.
"If customers take more than they're allowed, we have to ask them to leave the excess at the register," JK said. "This makes the employee look like the bad guy when they're only enforcing a clearly posted rule."
Make sure to check any posted signage or ask questions if you're not sure about the limitations of a deal.
But also don't try and get around sale restrictions by splitting up purchases
One way customers try to skirt purchasing limits is having different members of their family go through the checkout process separately, but JK said employees can usually tell when this is the case.
"We know that a 3-year-old didn't come in on their own to buy three dozen eggs with a $50 bill," JK said. "In these cases, we're forced to ask the responsible customer to put back the excess, and that's annoying."
Try not to abandon your cart in the store if you need to rush out
Slipping away from your shopping cart to grab an item down the aisle is fine, but Aldi staffers dislike when customers simply abandon their fully loaded carts and leave, according to JK
"It's annoying when customers leave their full carts around the store because the employees then have to return all those items to their proper places," JK said.
Abandoned carts can also obstruct the flow of traffic in the aisles and prevent some customers with mobility limitations from accessing products.
If you do need to dash out of the store without purchasing the items you've collected, at least deliver the cart to a staff member.
Putting items back on the wrong shelves creates more work for the staff
Many shoppers are probably guilty of ditching an unwanted item on the wrong shelf, but Bronson said that this seemingly harmless habit can create lots of extra work for Aldi staffers.
"We get that customers might decide against purchasing certain items, but employees are the ones responsible for tracking those products down and putting them back," Bronson said.
If you don't have time to properly return an item, it's always better to leave the product at the register or pass it to an employee who can take it directly where it belongs.
You shouldn't expect employees to clean up after your children
Being a courteous Aldi shopper means keeping an eye on your children and picking up after them if they happen to make a mess.
"Aldi is a great place for all ages, but employees will get annoyed if you allow your kids to make a mess in the store and don't clean up after them," Bronson said.
Bronson added that the staff particularly dislikes when parents allow their kids to knock items off the shelves or run around the store alone.
There's no reason to get frustrated with employees over out-of-date or sold-out Aldi Finds
Aldi Finds is a weekly selection of items that are available until stock runs out. Every store receives a single shipment, which means shoppers need to act fast if they want one of the chosen products.
JK said that despite the nature of the promotion, many customers don't take the warning about limited availability seriously.
"It's irritating when customers come in searching for a popular Aldi Finds item weeks after it was advertised," JK said. "These items aren't restocked, but some customers still throw a fit or try to guilt-trip employees for not ordering enough."
When planning your next grocery trip, make sure the products you're looking for are up to date.
Don't linger in the public restroom for too long
The restrooms at Aldi are available for customer use, but staff struggle when a shopper or an entire family monopolizes the space for a long time.
"Be respectful with how you use the bathroom," JK said. "It annoys us when we have to ask someone to leave the restroom because they've been in there for two hours."
Aldi employees shouldn't have to break up heated arguments between shoppers
Steeply discounted Aldi products often sell out quickly, which can make some customers frustrated, but Bronson said picking a fight with another shopper over getting the last of a certain item is never necessary or acceptable.
"People would be shocked at how often Aldi employees have to break up arguments between shoppers," Bronson said. "We aren't paid to do this, so please be respectful to fellow shoppers and team members."
Many Aldi products are regularly restocked, so you can go back in a day or two to retrieve the item.
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