With the rise of contactless payments and recurring credit card charges, many consumers express worry that businesses may be charging them for goods and services they never authorized.
If you’re one of these hyper-aware shoppers, then this recent TikTok posted by Veronica Merritt (@thismadmama) won’t exactly quell those anxieties.
That’s because the TikToker, after thinking that her Walmart bill during a recent visit to the popular retailer was quite high, decided to check her receipt.
She says she ended up finding a charge for $36.97 that she couldn’t account for—a pet bed that she never bought that was randomly added to her transaction. Other Walmart shoppers have said this has happened to them as well.
@thismadmama Has this happened to you recently?! I need to know if this was a random glitch or if Walmart is pulling some type of scam. Thankfully i saw it and got my money back but if I hadn’t checked my receipt I’d be out $36! #walmart #walmartScam #thismadmama #shoppingTok ♬ Monkeys Spinning Monkeys – Kevin MacLeod & Kevin The Monkey
Merritt says in the video while holding up a receipt to the camera stating, “You should always check your receipts when you’re done shopping.” On the bill of sale, she has a single $36.97 item highlighted.
“It just appeared on my bill,” she says in the clip. “It wasn’t something I purchased. It wasn’t something that got read wrong, it was just some weird kinda glitch and that’s why.”
Turns out viewers who saw the TikToker’s post had some strange ring-up stories from Walmart of their own.
“They tried to charge me $46 for a watermelon once,” one TikToker wrote.
Another individual who said they used to be a Walmart worker said they had come across this “rare” glitch before.
“I used to work at Walmart as a cashier,” they wrote. “Sometimes it’s just a glitch it’s always super random pretty rare and I always felt so bad when it happened.”
However, another person said this happens enough at the store that Walmart has become “famous” for it, adding, “Always check your Walmart receipts.”
This isn’t the first time a social media user has complained about “phantom” items randomly appearing at check-out.
A post uploaded to Reddit’s r/walmart sub by a user named @TinyGlobes back in 2020 read that they were randomly charged $76 for pig’s feet, which they thought was strange because they never purchased pig’s feet before in their life.
The user added that after they went back to the store to discuss the charge employees at Walmart ultimately ended up refunding the charge with “no problem.”
“Phantom billing” has unfortunately been reported by a variety of industries as well. Spectrum customers have previously complained about accruing random debits or charges for unknown and non-existent services provided to them by the internet company.
The Daily Dot has reached out to Walmart via email and Merritt via Instagram direct message.