34
   

Self-Serve Grocery Checkouts: Pro or Con?

 
 
sozobe
 
Reply Mon 26 Sep, 2011 12:40 pm
I just saw this article saying they're unpopular and starting to be phased out. Nooooo....!

http://finance.yahoo.com/news/Supermarkets-start-bagging-apf-1866082873.html

I absolutely love them. I lipread well but shopping clerk smalltalk is pretty much always a nightmare. They're unpredictable, they're bored, they utter stock phrases that don't match up with what they're thinking. (Speech: "Did you find everything OK?" Thought: "Seventeen minutes until my next break. Oh wait, that clock is three minutes fast. Twenty minutes until I get my next break. Or is it fourteen minutes?") (I basically read minds and so I get thrown when there isn't a speech/thought matchup.)

I either have to lead with "I'm deaf!" out of the blue or have some situation where they think I'm snubbing them because they said something when I wasn't looking (meaning that I put a fair amount of energy into trying to keep an eye on them without staring, which also freaks 'em out) or they think I'm just off because I answer something in a way they didn't expect (because I took a guess at what they asked but was wrong), or else I just plain get it obviously wrong and then go ahead with the "sorry I'm deaf" and usually it was nothing important and they look abashed and spend the rest of the time trying to decide whether they're going to ask me something about the fact that I'm deaf or whether that's rude and whether I wouldn't be able to understand their question so they shouldn't say anything... (which is usually the direction they go). Or else I get it right -- happens sometimes -- and then they go and say more and it starts all over. I just generally dislike the whole experience.

So, self-serve bagging has been so awesome. I love love love it. No hassle, just swoosh swoosh and out of there.

It generally works better for short trips with fewer groceries -- I do still go to the clerk lines if I have a LOT. But I make a lot of short trips too. I'd say about 75% of the time I'm in the supermarket I do the self-bagging, and that lowers my supermarket stress quite a bit.

What about you? Do you use 'em? Like 'em? Hate 'em?
  • Topic Stats
  • Top Replies
  • Link to this Topic
Type: Discussion • Score: 34 • Views: 4,811 • Replies: 75

 
Ragman
 
  3  
Reply Mon 26 Sep, 2011 12:49 pm
@sozobe,
I sympathize and empathize with you. I used one once and got cured of the habit. I had to call the supervisor over to ring it in manually, because the self-checkout device scanned badly or programing was off-kilter.

However, were I deaf, I'd prefer self checkout, too. It'd be nice for a supermarket to have a register that was labelled 'no boring small-talk' or 'cashier make it easier to be lip read'.
0 Replies
 
Walter Hinteler
 
  3  
Reply Mon 26 Sep, 2011 12:52 pm
@sozobe,
I don't like them.

Well, that's just due the experiences I'd had in the USA: there was always someone in front of me who had to ask for help. And so it took longer than queuing up at the 'express checkout' ...
ehBeth
 
  3  
Reply Mon 26 Sep, 2011 12:52 pm
Tried it. Disliked it. Went back to the regular service.
I don't get much conversation from clerks other than "debit?"
I pack as they're ringing in, I pay, I leave.
MMarciano
 
  6  
Reply Mon 26 Sep, 2011 12:55 pm
@ehBeth,
I don't like them either, they are charging me enough for the food they might as well scan them, they don't give me any discount for doing their work Smile
0 Replies
 
aidan
 
  2  
Reply Mon 26 Sep, 2011 12:57 pm
I love them and use them whenever I can. I never have any problem with them.
0 Replies
 
ehBeth
 
  2  
Reply Mon 26 Sep, 2011 01:01 pm
@Walter Hinteler,
Walter Hinteler wrote:
there was always someone in front of me who had to ask for help.


true. It usually looks like they've got 3 or 4 staff (at least one manager) in attendance at the self-scan section - 4 pods, and 1 regularly seems to be out of commission.

0 Replies
 
tsarstepan
 
  2  
Reply Mon 26 Sep, 2011 01:07 pm
@sozobe,
They aren't particularly too common with the grocery stores I patronize. There still is one Keyfoods in my neighborhood but I shop at a closer store (two blocks as opposed to 5ish blocks).

I find them fun to use.

I remember when they started putting the self-service registers in Framingham, MA before I moved to NYC in 2002.
0 Replies
 
sozobe
 
  1  
Reply Mon 26 Sep, 2011 01:21 pm
The ones I use (two different stores, out of four I frequent) seem to work very smoothly. So maybe that's the big difference.

I had issues the first couple of times I tried them as I got used to them (they each work similarly but have their own quirks) but then it was fine.

Tsar, I find 'em fun too!

Also Columbus clerks are generally Chatty Cathys. All of 'em. They never seem to get through without saying something.
0 Replies
 
boomerang
 
  3  
Reply Mon 26 Sep, 2011 01:22 pm
I don't particularly like them because I use my own bags and they always throw the weight off so the clerk has to come over and okay things every time I use a new bag.

If you're buying beer or wine the clerk has to ok that too.

And then you have to look up and/or enter in the produce codes and bulk food codes.

I think they're a hassle.
Finn dAbuzz
 
  2  
Reply Mon 26 Sep, 2011 01:23 pm
Hate them!

Never use unless there's only one manned aisle open and it's a mile long.
0 Replies
 
sozobe
 
  1  
Reply Mon 26 Sep, 2011 01:26 pm
@boomerang,
I've never had a problem with using my own bags.

I really didn't think they were so unpopular, interesting.

They're fairly popular here as far as I can tell -- there are usually lines, but they move fast. (The unwritten rule here seems to be that you only use them if you don't have much, probably because of limited space for bags in the bagging area.)

They also work best if you can tag-team -- usually I scan and sozlet bags. If I'm by myself, I don't use the self-checkout unless I didn't get much because it takes longer to scan and then bag.
0 Replies
 
Setanta
 
  2  
Reply Mon 26 Sep, 2011 01:30 pm
Around here, not having your own bags is unusual. I always liked the self-serve check out lanes, but i've not ever seen any in Canada.
0 Replies
 
edgarblythe
 
  2  
Reply Mon 26 Sep, 2011 01:43 pm
I always use self check out when possible. Here, the grocery store does not let you do big orders, but it sure is nice to walk out with a few items as fast as that.
0 Replies
 
joefromchicago
 
  6  
Reply Mon 26 Sep, 2011 02:25 pm
Hate 'em. Don't use 'em. If they want unpaid labor to take jobs away from their checkers and baggers, they can always raid an orphanage like any other self-respecting capitalist.
0 Replies
 
JPB
 
  3  
Reply Mon 26 Sep, 2011 02:26 pm
Hate 'em. Almost never use them unless I have one item that I forgot the first time through the regular checkout and I'm just trying to get home before all my frozen stuff thaws.
0 Replies
 
chai2
 
  3  
Reply Mon 26 Sep, 2011 03:15 pm
Wow.
Like soz, I'm surprised so many people dislike them.

I'll definately use them if everything I have is scanable, and I don't have a full cart of groceries. Not because it's "too much work" if my cart is full, but because I figure the more stuff you have the more chance you'll have to call someone over.

For just a few items that all have bar codes, or produce that I weighed and printed out a bar code, I'm going to use the self serve and get out. I can weigh and scan all fresh stuff at my regular supermarket, and honestly I'm puzzled why you can't do that at Whole Foods, which I go to for particular items. If I'm getting packaged stuff there I do it myself, but I wait in line if I have fresh stuff since I don't know how to look up codes, and THAT seems a hassle. I'm sure though if I learned to do it, it'd be no big deal.

I really don't get the idea of "they're working here, they should be doing all the work." Using that premise, why don't they have someone walking around with you while you point at things and they take them off the shelves and put them in your cart? I don't feel like I'm being catered to or anything because a cashier scans and totals up what I'm buying. I'm totally capable of doing that myself. Then again, I'm the type that as soon as my order comes up, I come around and start bagging my own stuff, I don't want/need anyone to help me out to the car. Hell, when I get home I have to schlep it in the house and put it away anyway. Why not have someone from the store follow me home to do that?
In fact, a pet peeve of mine are customers who whine how long the line is taking, then, when it's their turn, they don't get their ass over to bag their own stuff to speed things up. They'd rather stand there and glare at the cashier while they scan, then bag, taking twice as long as it could take. Most of the time, when I'm bagging my groceries, one of the free range baggers will come by and take over. I let them, but I'd just as soon have them go help someone else.

I don't understand what you mean boomer, about resetting the scale because of your bags.
Don't you take the stuff out of your cart, scan it (or in your case weigh it. in my stores you weigh stuff in the department and print out a sticker.) and then put it in your bag?
Even if you put your groceries in your bag while shopping, don't you take them all out for the cashier to scan and weigh and put in your bag?

BTW, I get in great conversations all the time with cashiers. More than 1/2 the time I'll get the person behind me to join in, and we'll all be having a party by the time I leave. On the rare occassion the person behind me gives me a sour puss, like they're too good to talk to the cashier, I think ''fuckum"

Whatever it takes to get out of there faster, I'll do.

BTW soz, that conversation thing can get reversed. At my usual market there are a number of deaf cashiers. Ususally they pretty much set the limit of conversation, "hi, how are you?" etc.
A couple of weeks ago, a deaf cashier asked me more, then asked how my day was going or something. I laughed and said "I'm hungry" He said something I didn't get, he repeated it and I realized he was saying I needed to get some protein. "Oh, yeah, I do." But then he started saying something else....I think something about crickets. Crickets? Finally I said "Yeah, there's a lot of protein in crickets, but I don't think I'd eat them." Maybe he felt like I was understanding really good, so he up and said something else I really didn't get, and I felt really akward...then he seemed to feel akward, and so forth.
sozobe
 
  2  
Reply Mon 26 Sep, 2011 03:26 pm
@chai2,
Funny! Man I wish there were deaf cashiers around here. There aren't any that I've run into. Trader Joe's cashiers are usually a bit more of a speech-thought match, I have an easier time understanding them, and one guy knew a little sign language and I had a good conversation with him. (Not IN sign language, but that got things going.)

I speak pretty much fine, which is actually part of the problem.... people (cashiers and stuff) think "What the hell is wrong with her??" instead of going right to "ohhh, she's deaf." People often think I'm just being rude. Which I HATE. So I put too much effort into avoiding offending people. Bah.

I need to get a t-shirt with "I'M DEAF" in big red letters and be done with it.

Except then I'd really never understand anyone because everyone would talk weird right off the bat. A big part of being able to understand people who don't know me, in general, is that they talk normally at first and I understand 'em and then later I say "oh by the way I'm deaf" and they say "really?" and they already know that if they talk normally I can understand 'em.

Grocery clerks are pretty much hopeless though. Unless they're new. Then they have a much better thought/speech match. (Speech: "Did you find everything OK?" Thought: "Did she find everything OK?")
boomerang
 
  2  
Reply Mon 26 Sep, 2011 03:26 pm
@chai2,
Quote:
I don't understand what you mean boomer, about resetting the scale because of your bags.


There are the scales where you weigh food while checking out (put the food on the scale, punch in the PLU, it rings in the price) but there are also scales where the actual bagged goods go. When I unfold my bags and place them in the bagging area so I can load them they are recognized as "unauthorized item in the bagging area" because the bags themselves have actual weight.
InfraBlue
 
  2  
Reply Mon 26 Sep, 2011 03:43 pm
Here, the last ones were phased out a couple of years ago in all of the stores that had them. I liked them, but they seemed kind of glitchy. It seemed as if there were always at least a couple of lanes that were closed with out of order machines.
0 Replies
 
 

Related Topics

 
  1. Forums
  2. » Self-Serve Grocery Checkouts: Pro or Con?
Copyright © 2019 MadLab, LLC :: Terms of Service :: Privacy Policy :: Page generated in 0.03 seconds on 09/22/2019 at 12:19:49