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A cash resolution

Following advice gained through a WSYX investigation, Bishop filed an official complaint about her astronomical sandwich bill with the Cromwell Connecticut Business Bureau, where Subway is an accredited business and where the business must respond to complaints brought to their attention.

This finally triggered a response from the fast-food giant. According to Business Insider, Subway reached out to Bishop to connect her with the regional manager for Thorntons, the owner of the gas station and, seemingly, the Subway franchise that ripped her off.

The regional manager allegedly told the struggling mom that there was an online portal where she could have claimed a refund, but they’d never used it before — so they decided to pay her back with a huge wad of cash at the gas station. In total, the saga took two months to resolve.

To some, that may sound like a happy ending. But Bishop’s money problems did not end there.

She told Business Insider her funds were placed on hold when she tried to deposit the cash at her local Huntington Bank branch, which meant she couldn’t immediately pay the outstanding bills she’d wracked up while fighting to get her money back.

“I just honestly don't have the emotional space to deal with this,” she said. “It's stressing me out so much.”

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A safer payment option

Bishop may have been able to avoid some of her struggles if she’d paid for the Subway sandwiches with her credit card.

The Better Business Bureau told WSYX it is often safer to pay for goods and services with a credit card — if you have access to one — than with a debit card or cash.

That’s because credit cards typically give you the advantage of being able to dispute fraudulent charges and nearly all credit cards come with zero liability protection — a guarantee by the credit card issuer that you won’t have to pay charges made fraudulently without your consent.

In comparison, when you pay for something with a debit card, the funds are taken directly from your checking account.

If a fraudster steals your card or, like Bishop’s case, an erroneous charge is made, this can have a hugely negative impact on your personal finances. It could leave you unable to settle time-sensitive debts — like a credit card bill, mortgage payment or car loan payment — which could result in high interest charges, as well as late and missed payment fees.

This is what happened to Bishop, who told Business Insider she was forced to prioritize which bills to pay, while trying to recover her extortionate sandwich bill.

“It was very difficult,” she said. “I have never had to feel like we're going to have just to get spaghetti, and that's going to be that… I had to make sacrifices during these two months.”


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About the Author

Bethan Moorcraft

Bethan Moorcraft


Bethan Moorcraft is a reporter for Moneywise with experience in news editing and business reporting across international markets.

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