What are our top shopping frustrations?


sales crowds

There's nothing more annoying than having to deal with rude staff when you're shopping - and that's official. A new survey has revealed that it's our top shopping frustration - and rightly so - after-all, it's our purchases that keep them in a job.

But what are our top ten shopping bugbears, and why?


The survey, by netvouchercodes.co.uk, found that 25% of people are wound up by rude staff when they are shopping - making it by far the most annoying thing about hitting the shops.

One person taking part in the survey noted: "Rude staff are the most irritating aspect of shopping on the high street. I find it more common in high end stores where assistants make you feel unwelcome. On other occasions, employees look disinterested and will only help if they absolutely must."

The frustration is understandable. Staff in highly fashionable shops seem to see it as part of the job description to look down on the clientele, while others clearly think their job would be so much more pleasant if it wasn't for the customers.

On the other hand, staff are often not the most highly-paid, some have no say over the shifts they are working, and in many cases they face stressful days filled by equally rude customers. It's hard to stay cheerful under those sorts of conditions.


The second-biggest source of irritation comes from these rude customers - particularly those who jump the queue - which was named by 16% of people. One survey respondent said: "I absolutely hate queue jumpers; they are arrogant and quite frankly take no notice of others who have waited in line. However, all too often I am too afraid to say anything and have to hope that they see my angry stares and get the message."

In third place is finding the wrong size on the hanger (15%) - something that most people only spot when they've trekked to the changing rooms and are trying to struggle into something. In fourth place is inconsistent sizing (14%), which can see your 'size' vary dramatically from shop-to-shop, which makes it impossible to buy anything without trying it on first.


Fifth on the list was small changing rooms - which annoy 9% of people. Clearly devoting space to anything other than racks of clothes isn't going to make shops any money, but it can't be a good idea to take a happy potential customer and turn them into a claustrophobic, bruised non-customer by squeezing them into a tiny room.

The rest of the top ten included cluttered stores, damaged clothes, a lack of staff available to help, customers who walk slowly, and loud music.

No solution

Steve Barnes from NetVoucherCodes.co.uk, said: "Shopping on the high street has become an increasingly frustrating event and is no longer seen to be a leisurely activity especially when customers have to deal with various annoyances."

Perhaps unsurprisingly, he suggested you might be better-off shopping from the comfort of your own home. Of course, this can come with its own set of irritations: inconsistent sizing, poor descriptions, disappointing quality, bad service from the delivery company. It's wonder that anyone can ever be bothered to buy anything.

But what do you think? Are these your biggest irritations? Let us know in the comments.

Top ten bugbears

  1. Arrogant and rude staff 25%
  2. Queue jumpers 16%
  3. Wrong sizes on hangers 15%
  4. Inconsistent sizing 14%
  5. Small dressing room 9%
  6. Cluttered stores 7%
  7. Damaged garments 6%
  8. Lack of personnel to help during busy periods 5%
  9. Slow walkers 2%
  10. Loud music in store 1%