AM host Bernadine Oliver-Kerby has shared a perturbing anecdote about a pair of underpants that had her co-hosts cringing in disgust.
The sorry story follows an Auckland woman going viral on social media for complaining about The Warehouse's refusal to refund her $12 for a five-pack of underwear - one of which had already been worn. After purchasing the multi-pack of pants at the retailer's WestCity branch, the woman realised she needed a larger size - so returned to the store in the hopes of exchanging the underpants, or obtaining a refund.
"The Warehouse refused to do either of these! Basically their attitude was tough shit," the customer said in her complaint, which was posted to The Warehouse's Facebook. "I get that there are health and safety concerns. But it's not like all the underwear were tried on, only the first pair. You can still resell the remaining four and get something for it."
Discussing the matter on Monday morning, AM co-anchors Ryan Bridge, Melissa Chan-Green and Bernadine Oliver-Kerby were in disbelief that the woman had the cheek to expect a refund after wearing one of the five pairs.
While The Warehouse does have a 60-day money-back guarantee with proof of purchase, there are some exceptions. The policy outlines that items including underwear, lingerie, phones, CDs, confectionery and opened printer cartridges can't be returned unless they're faulty or damaged due to copyright, hygiene and security reasons. The Warehouse's website makes note that: "Due to hygiene reasons, we are unable to refund underwear, swimwear, and lingerie, if worn and not in original condition including packaging."
After Bridge's revelation that women's underwear are typically sold with a sticker in the crotch, Oliver-Kerby piped up that she had "a good undie story" to share.
Before regaling her coworkers with the colourful account, Oliver-Kerby prefaced that it wasn't her involved, but a "member of the household".
"A member of the household, who was not me, was… overseas [and] going in to try some things on," she said.
"[They] went to the counter and said, 'Um, these are already used'.
"Someone had gone in, put the new undies on, and put their old undies in the Calvin Klein box - and put them back on the shelf!"
The story had Bridge and Chan-Green recoiling in revulsion, with both branding the stranger's behaviour "disgusting".
"How did they know they were used?" Bridge asked, before hastily adding: "I don't want to know."
"There was no sticker," Chan-Green quipped.
In her complaint, the Auckland woman acknowledged that while $12 "isn't a huge amount", she felt "ripped off" that The Warehouse wouldn't refund or exchange the wrong-sized underwear.
Screenshots of the complaint have since been circulated widely on social media, with critics condemning the woman for her audacious behaviour. Others shared their own horror stories from working in retail, including a customer who attempted to return a wetsuit that was soaked, sandy and "smelled like pee".
One said the story made them "ashamed to be a Kiwi".
"The warning is actually on the receipt," they said.