After 1 month of weekends into my Mystery Shopper part-time job, time for me to blog/rant about it so that I can share it with you all.

Mystery shopper may sound like a nice, interesting, and perhaps a unique job. I would have to agree on that at the beginning and totally disagree on that after just 1 day of being a mystery shopper as it is becoming a chore instead.

As I am busy on weekdays, I am only available to do the mystery shopper job on the weekends. Somewhere inside me makes me regret that decision, I should say I am only available for Saturday so that I can have a good rest of Sunday to prepare for Monday.

We started on the first weekend of June, it was rather a new experience and an interesting job for the first few shops we visited and we are quite enthusiastic about it. After visiting almost 10 stores for that day, we got really sick and tired of it. It was really tiring walking the whole day and perspiring all over your body as Singapore is fucking hot during this period.

On average, our working hours range from 11 am to 11 pm depending on the time they allocate to us. And yes there is a time limit. So for example they give you 5 stores to visit during a time frame from 1 pm to 3 pm, you MUST visit it ONLY within this time period. You NEED to also purchase something within the store so as to obtain the receipt as evidence that you have to BEEN to that store at this particular time and day.

So if your planner does not know Singapore well enough (you will be amazed at road names that you didn’t know existed), he or she, for example, will plan you 1 pm to 3 pm at Boon Lay, 3 pm to 5 pm at Bukit Panjang and perhaps 5 pm to 7 pm at Jurong at then 7 pm to 9 pm at Choa Chu Kang. Notice the merry go round?

Worst still if your planner does not know that we have to wait for bus and MRT, he or she will plan you from 2 pm to 5 pm to visit 4 stores, 1 store at Chinatown, 1 store at Bugis and 2 stores at the opposite end of Orchard Road. This scenario pisses me off more than anything else.

Here comes the worst part, we are underpaid, to be precise S$8.00 per shop we visited and we can’t claim transport unless the time assigned to us is after 11 pm. Only if we wrote in the form that we have a car, then there will assign us this time slot. The amount we can claim is S$0.30 per kilometer traveled.

We are also “given” a maximum of S$1.50 to spend in each store, the receipt will act as evidence of the amount we spend as well. But if we bought something less than S$1.50, then we can only claim up to the price of the item we bought and not S$1.50.

We need to observe a lot of things like the cleanliness of the store, the service as well as the items displayed in the store. Normally we get assigned a total of 12 stores each day which is about 6 stores per person and we have to write it down immediately after we leave the store if not we definitely cannot remember as our memory tend to overlap one store with another.

When we have reached home, we have to type what we have scribbled on a piece of paper into Microsoft Word and THIS IS THE PART I HATE MOST! The questionnaire has a rating scare as well as an additional comments field for EACH question and it is COMPULSORY for us to fill in the additional comment field and we CANNOT repeat the same comment twice. They should just rename the additional comments to compulsory comments instead.

All this work for only S$8.00 per shop, but before we applied, we are told that we cannot earn much from being a mystery shopper. So in other words, we shoot our own foot.

But anyway, since we are not earning much, I have been driving around to complete my chore rather than taking the bus or MRT. So minus off S$2.00 for parking and S$2.00 for petrol for each store, we are only earning S$4.00 per shop.

My heart feel for Li Xiang as from Monday to Friday she got a full-time job and weekends she does not even have enough rest, so normally immediately after we ended our mystery shopper job, she will KO immediately and worst still if it is a Sunday, she will KO and have to wake up at 7.30 am on the next day for her full-time job.

So think twice before becoming a mystery shopper.