Posted by: Moira Drexler | March 2, 2011

Erlangen Shopping – The Rudeness Element.

I cannot believe what I witnessed today in Erlangen.  Well I can and I can’t.

I was (for once) leisurely looking at the items a shop had to offer. I don’t get the chance much because I am usually serving my customers at Australiss.

Another customer entered the shop and asked the shop assistant if this was where she could buy her herbs.  Well, the shop assistant virtually spat at her because the lady had walked into the wrong shop.  I want to add here that the shop she required WAS RIGHT NEXT DOOR.  Did the sales assistant be kind and point her in the right direction?  Hell no, she was so rude to the lady without reason and as I mentioned, she virtually spat at her.  It was DISGUSTING.  She shouted at her that she didn’t sell herbs.  She scoffed at the lady after she left the shop humiliated.  And she didn’t bother to behave while i was still in the shop.  Nor did she even ask if I required assistance.  I hate to say it but service in shops, particularly Germany is pretty bad.

I think I am well travelled enough to be able to say this.  Maybe it is just ‘Franconians’.  I don’t know why, but I am forever baffled at the bad behaviour at people who work in shops.  How can they expect anyone to want to buy anything from them?  I am clever enough to make the observation here that this is in no way a misunderstanding with the language.  I have been here long enough but what I witnessed today made me sick.

I left the shop rather quickly feeling so cross and it was lucky I didn’t let her have an earful of Australian rudeness.  I found the lady and quietly told her that the shop I thought she was seeking was right next door.  She gave me such a kind look and noticed that I had an accent.  She was German herself and said she is ashamed of her fellow countrymen the way they behave in shops.  ‘There is no service’ she said quietly.

I am sick of the rudeness in shops here.  I am sick of having the change virtually thrown at me in supermarkets.  I am so appalled and I would never treat anyone who walked into Australiss like that.  And I would never humiliate someone who had an enquiry.

Just recently in Fulda, I had a shop assistant turn her back to me and talk on the phone, ‘Geil, Geil, Geil’   (which means horny, horny, horny.)  I was in the changing room half undressed needing assistance.  I got so cross I got dressed and asked her for the name of her boss.  She was so put out.  She screamed at me, she talked as if I should be in the psychiatric clinic.  I told her that I wouldn’t be handing over my money when there was no service and how dare she have her back to me shouting ‘horny, horny, horny’ down the phone.

This is a photo of my shop in Winter.  No wonder customers get such a shock when they come here.  We give service with a smile.

Jewellery shop Australiss in Erlangen in the Winter.

And to the lady who was out of line today, why don’t you take a long walk off a short pier.



  1. I foiund exactly the same with German shops. If anyone could set up a business to teach customer service to German retailers as a way of showing them how to increase customer satisfaction, their own profits and reputation, I predict that person would make their own fortune.
    For the moment, I have an unofficial boycott on shops where I am treated rudely. I also tell others which shops to avoid and I hope that affects sales in a small way.

    Seen in England outside a shop: ” If you are unhappy with our service please tell us. If you are happy, please tell others.”

    • Thanks for your comments. It is sad but true but perhaps by putting it out there to the world, they would learn. So often in Australiss I hear this, ‘BUT YOU ARE SO FRIENDLY!’ as if it is a shock to their system. Come on Germany, pick up your act in the service department. Don’t these sales assistants realize that without customers, there is no business?!

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