Costco bans smiley faces on customer receipts

Smiley face ban?
Published: May. 7, 2014 at 12:12 AM EDT
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CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) - It's a tradition at many Costco Warehouses across the country, as a customer leaves the store an employee checks their receipt, and sometimes draws a little smiley face on it. Their are internet blogs  about the simple gesture and many pictures online.

But Monday night, Blake Hartwick went to the Tyvola Road store in Charlotte with his 3 year old daughter and the usual smiley face was not on the receipt.

Blake says his daughter asked the man at the door to draw one, "He looked at us and said I'm sorry I can't draw a smiley face on the back of your receipt."

Blake says two Costco employees told him a new corporate policy banned the practice. "I was stunned," Blake said.

WBTV started calling to get to the bottom of the alleged smiley face ban. A corporate representative told us it actually was a local decision made by the general manager of the Tyvola Road store.

The representative said a few customers had complained the smiley faces were getting too "artsy". The practice was banned altogether.

After we shared Blake's concerns about the simple gesture, the decision was reversed. The Costco representative told us the store will continue to draw simple smiley faces on customer receipts.

Now, Blake and his daughter are both, all smiles.

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