Do you have cheap friends that take toilet paper from public restrooms or refuse to tip anyone? We bet you do and if you do, you'll love these stories of horribly cheap people being, well, horribly cheap. From the guy that hoarded his lighter butane to the woman that only orders water at a restaurant but picks food off everyone else's plates, these people's stories will drive you nuts!
We scoured through Reddit to bring you the cheapest and the stingiest, and we can assure you, this slideshow delivers! Content has been edited for clarity.
"I used to work at CVS and about a month after Christmas, all of the leftover Christmas stuff was on sale for 90% off. This lady comes to the counter with a bunch of stuff, including some adhesive labels for presents, the ones with the 'From: To:' and a snowman or whatever on them and they ring up $2.70, 90% off is $0.27
She says 'Oh, those are supposed to be $2.30 they are ringing up wrong.'
So I tell her, 'Oh, you have the nicer more expensive ones, but there is only a 4 cent difference so it doesn't really matter.'
She goes to the back of the store to switch them for the labels that are 4 cents cheaper. Normally I wouldn't care, but she was the last customer in the store and we were supposed to be closed 10 minutes before she got there."
"My old roommate is the cheapest person I've ever met. He would never buy necessities - stuff like toothpaste, toilet paper, soap...
One day I stopped buying everything and once everything ran out, I went to my mom's house for the week. I came back and nothing had been purchased.
When I asked him how he was wiping his behind, he pointed to the sink!"
"My mom won a radio contest with this story:
When she was a young woman and engaged to my father, they took a trip to visit his parents who lived in a small town. Now, both my dad's parents grew up during the Great Depression. They're used to saving and penny-pinching to begin with.
My dad's mother offers my mom a drink. She accepts and is given a drink with ice and a slice of lime.
Upon finishing the drink, she asks my grandmother what to do with it (i.e. put it in the sink, or rinse it out). My grandmother takes the glass from her, rinses off the ice cubes and lime, puts them in a plastic baggie, and puts them back in the freezer and fridge."
"I think my grandpa might win:
Opticians were having some sort of promotion at the mall, where they'd measure one eye for free, and if you needed glasses, you'd get a discount on the rest of the job. He got his eye measured, figured out he needed glasses, and just walked away with his single-eye prescription. Later, he sent my aunt to go buy him some glasses (as cheaply as possible) with that prescription. The glasses-makers sent her back, obviously, because they needed the other measurement. He signed a letter guaranteeing them that his eyes were, indeed, the same prescription.
When he went through a pair of glasses, he went and got new ones, but when the new ones went, he took both pairs and taped them one in front of the other, 'doubling up' his glasses, with the arms taped all along their lengths to keep them together. He still uses these.
He re-uses every sort of paper - bills, junk mail, newspaper, etc. - as writing paper. He just writes in the opposite direction to the original - so, landscape instead of portrait, for example. Or, he uses up all the margins.
He used to drive a delivery van for my uncle's bakery. He would drive like an absolute lunatic because as far as he knew, getting there sooner meant the engine was running for less time, and he was using less gas. Also, he would shut off the engine when going down hills. Every time.
He hasn't bought clothes since the 1960s or so.
The only bicycle he ever owned, which he still owns, was an absolute wreck of a beater from the 19-teens or so. So his bicycle is something like 102 years old now, though he's too old to ride it anyway, so I guess that's ok."
"There is this chick I am acquainted with who has very expensive tastes and she absolutely expects people to purchase expensive gift items for her, yet she is excruciatingly cheap herself.
When going out to eat, she will say, 'I'm not hungry, I'm just going to have water,' and then proceed to pick food off of everyone's plates under the pretense of 'trying it' to see if she likes it. She never really did it to me, as I'd probably smack her with my fork and scold her like a child, but she'd do it to most other people.
Her methods of repayment were also ridiculous, at best. Her line of thinking is basically like, 'I said I would pay you back $30 for the fireworks that I asked you to buy for me, so here is a $2 frappucino. Now we're even!' And she will not hesitate to call you a bad friend if you try and tell her that a $2 coffee is not an adequate method of repayment."
"A guy I used to hang out with, named Darren, called our mutual friend and asked him to go to the comic book store. The friend said 'no thanks,' but Darren insisted, and said he'd come to pick him up shortly. Our friend relents and goes with Darren. Halfway there, Darren turns to him and says, 'You owe me $5 for the gas down and back.' He was a loser.
Another time, Darren was invited to a BBQ at my house, I was serving steaks. He had to work and could not make it. A couple weeks later, he drops by, and says he is here for 'the steak I owe him.' He was being perfectly serious.
Another time, we all decided to throw in some money, buy pizzas and drinks, and rent a PS2. So we all toss in about $15 each, Darren shows up, and says, 'I got a discount on the PS2 rental, so that counts as my share' and refused to chip in."
"My parents visited me in Sacramento from Boston. Boston has excellent public transport, but in Sacramento, it's expensive and infrequent. We get on a bus and my father loses his mind when he hears that we can't get transfers and that bus fare is $2.50. He starts complaining and the driver mentions that we can get day passes for $6 each. So my dad makes us get those.
We go to Old Sacramento and hang out for a few hours. By that time we're tired and want to go back home. So we're waiting for the bus back when my dad realizes that taking two trips on the bus would have cost us $5 each, but we paid the extra dollar for the day pass.
So he made me and my mom get on the bus and ride it out to the end of the route. Then we waited for the returning bus and took that to the other end. And then we finally took the bus back to my apartment."
"I had a friend who:
1) Only ate food that he was offered for free or that he dumpster-dove for.
2) Bought the cheapest soap possible and only bathed once a week because otherwise, according to him, 'the soap runs out too quickly.'
3) Only owned one pair of shoes that he found in a dumpster three years prior and were held together with duct tape.
4) Lived off of Swiss Miss hot chocolate powder (just the powder, no added water) for a week when he couldn't dumpster dive due to being too weak (malnourishment...some friends eventually fed him for a few days to get him back on his feet).
He also had a savings account that he had ready access to with over $10k in it!
Cheapest guy I ever knew in my life."
"My family is definitely in the 'Scottish' stereotype. For example, my granddad would empty oil out of the car engine block and put it in the tractors, then take it out of that and put it in the lawnmower, down through increasingly smaller engines then into the chainsaw. He never understood why he had to keep replacing his chainsaws.
He also would get engine belts for free out of broken stuff or for cheap at garage sales, and we had a section in our barn that was just a wall of different engine belt sizes. One day, the belt driving the lawn mower's power assist snapped when I was mowing, and he sent me into the barn find a replacement. I couldn't find anything in the right size (it was mostly car engine belts) so I had to use electrical tape to extend the circumference of the drive wheel so the smallest belt would work. In the end, I wrapped it in twine which gave it enough friction to kinda work.
We always had a fire burning in the fireplace, year round, and granddad would burn everything he could since he wouldn't pay for garbage service (the joy of living on a farm our of the city). I think I finally convinced him not to burn so much plastic since it was really foul smelling and hurt the environment. Fortunately, the city we lived near was very into recycling, and recycling fires off the 'must save everything' neurons in his brain so he started to recycle nearly everything he could, and quite often, things he really shouldn't, like broken mercury-vapor light bulbs.
My dad isn't quite so bad, although getting him to throw anything away is like telling someone to throw money down the drain. I think it must be genetic because I catch myself doing crazy stuff like hoarding used tin foil, reusing zip-lock bags and never throwing out shoes even though they only have a couple of holes in them (and not that big, just don't wear them on a rainy day!) My wife thinks I'm crazy, but I'm much better than my dad and granddad. I guess the positive side is that I have always been good at saving cash so I can buy nice things when I want them."
"I work at a country club. These people are the stingiest bunch I've encountered.
There are two restaurants in the club, a fancy one and a mid-priced one.
On Tuesday nights there's a two for one burger special at the mid-price restaurant. Some members like to go to the fancy restaurant, pick up their drinks and then walk on over to the mid-priced restaurant to gorge on burgers. They're technically not supposed to be doing this but we can't say NO to the members. There's one family that comes in EVERY week on Tuesdays and no other day.
The same members also like to complain about tipping.
I hate my job."
"I used to work at Taco Bell as a manager until last September.
Working so many hours, you become familiar with certain clientele, the orders, the cars, voices, those jerks who always say something is missing from their order when I know they're lying because you were the one who put the stuff in the bag. That kind of person.
And then there are these people: There is an older lady who comes to the drive-thru occasionally close to the end of dinner rush with her adopted Asian daughter. She will literally sit at the speaker for ten minutes asking so many questions about all the items on the menu and her daughter is her echo: everything her mom says, she says it in a voice that is ten times higher. She wants the most complicated things but doesn't want to pay for extras. She really makes me want to blow my head off, full metal jacket style. But this is the part that gets me really angry: she will tell her daughter to get out of the stinky, early nineties Buick and run in front of her car and pick up the change on the ground outside the drive-thru windows. The little girl says things like, 'Mommy there's only a nickel, do you need a nickel?'
'Yes I do!'
Hey! I dropped that stuff on accident and had to give out another one. I'm supposed to go outside and put it back in the drawer so it's not short. You cheap jerk."