Click & Collect Bonus - Alcohol Ethics?

So I did a click and collect at a liquor store today (think big chain). I ordered half a dozen items as I thought it was a good time to stock up leading to silly season. Ended up getting half a dozen different varietal six packs, some spirits and mixers as the stars had aligned in terms of '2 for $$, + 'targeted offer + 10% whole store discount', combined with their special offers which were cheap to begin with.

I was in a rush when I got to the store, so gave my name/ID and they came out with two open boxes (both labelled with my name). I had a very quick glance and it looked like everything was there, so i popped them in my trolley and left.

When I got home and unpacked the boxes, low and behold there was an second mixer and bottle of spirits hidden underneath one of the six packs in the second box.

Now I'm usually a very ethical person in my daily life, but am finding it difficult to take these back to the store. Is it likely someone will get in trouble once a stock count is taken or will it just be put down to loss/wastage?

What would you do?
Poll below

Poll Options

  • 56
    Bonus! Keep the extras. No-one will get in trouble. It's wastage/loss to the store.
  • 0
    Someone's getting in trouble, but keep them anyway.
  • 8
    Return the extra booze to the store. It's the right thing to do.
  • 2
    Invite the local bikies for a party (for future favours) and spend the savings on eneloops.


  • +2 votes

    You’ve don’t better than me. I ended up with a ‘bonus’ tin of sardines in my woolies order.

    If free alcohol is crushing your moral compass then call them. They might not even want it back.

    • I'm finding your response a bit sardonic, but you are right. Maybe in the time of COVID, it's best to hold onto it..I did have a jar of Leggos Pasta sauce (from an associated business entity to the alcohol store) that was broken upon delivery in a home delivery earlier this year. I got in contact with them to request a refund, but they never responded. I ended up letting it go and not chasing it. Maybe this is the universe paying me back?

      • +1 vote

        Who knows. Maybe the dude packing your stuff threw in something extra as a good deed.

      • In life we get screwed and gifted by variance. Hopefully they balance out in the long run. But if you return your gifts you're only left with being screwed. Keep it!

    • You got sardines? I got a grater.

  • It's up to you, but knowing how supermarkets work the missing items at stocktake time will be written off as 'shrinkage' (five finger discount). It's very unlikely a particular staff member will get into trouble.

    I like to go through self service checkouts. Once at a trip to Bunnings I walked out of the store and realized I didn't scan one item. It wasn't a big ticket item, but after returning to my car I noticed. I put the item in my pocket, walked back to the store and put the item through the checkout and paid.

    However… I shop at Costco and one time the staff didn't scan a 5kg bag of rice in my trolley. The checkout missed it, the people at the door did too (they are a waste of employee time). I noticed when I got home and… didn't do anything about it and kept the free bag. If two people doing their job missed it then I wasn't going to drive back to the store to tell them.

    • Do Woolies know about shrinkage?

      • You're back! (Not sure shrinkage was the first thing I wanted you to bring up after disappearing for a few months!)

    • the people at the door did too (they are a waste of employee time)

      The people at the door are intended to stop people from walking out with a whole trolley full of stolen items.

      If they checked every single item in detail then there would a very long queue at the exit doors, and customers would get very upset.

  • Ethically you should return it. However, you may get someone in trouble if the person who handed it to you is not the one who you return the items to, and they in turn report it or are the manager or whatever.
    Can alcohol be returned? I just wonder with COVID and everything if they would even be able to take it back.

  • Technically “theft by finding”

    Their error though so I see it as a no harm no foul situation! Enjoy the drinks. As long as you didn’t scan a flybuys card which has all Your address info etc I wouldn’t be too worried.

    • Technically “theft by finding”

      Only if a court can prove beyond reasonable doubt that OP was aware of the error. Otherwise it's a mistake of fact.

    • +2 votes

      Even if they have the address… How will they ever prove that OP is recipient of extra bottles…

      These big chains take these mistakes into shrinkage…

      No one pulled out the ethics card when the milk prices were increased in account of drought.. The increased prices by the way still continue..

  • Pragmatic to keep? Yes

    Ethical to keep? No

  • If you return the bottles, the person who picked your order will most likely get some kind of 'talking to'
    If you keep the bottles, nothing happens and it simply vanishes into the void of dunno where that one went

    moar you know

  • Xmas present

  • Toss the vodka and the mixer into the ocean. It's basically the only ethical thing you can do at this point. You're damned if you take it back because some kid will get fired, and you're damned if you drink it. You can't give it away because you'd be promoting alcoholism.

  • No one will get in trouble if you keep it or return it.
    I'd personally return it, but obv your choice. The ozbargain votes at time of comment are about 80% keeping it.

  • Make a charitable donation of to the value of the bonus. You get a tax deduction, feel good, and keep the alcohol.

  • I did an online shop with Woolworths once and discovered a carton of cigarettes I didn't order when unpacking the groceries at home…..sells for over $300

    I don't smoke so I took them into work and sold
    it to a work colleague who does. Gave them a discount of 50%…..both parties were happy!