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Self-check out lines at the grocery store..

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Jay H, Mar 26, 2002.

  1. Jay H

    Jay H Producer

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    How nationwide is this? Over here by NYC, there is one out of 5 stores near me that have this option, and it seems store by store as not every store in the same chain have them, but the A&P near me has this option. It takes credit/debit and cash and has a built-in scale in the bar code reader. I find myself strangely going to this store just because I have the ease of doing it myself. I usually bike the 7 mile roundtrip there too and bring some panniers on my bike and a small daypack for anything large. But I find it a great way to make sure I'm not overcharged and there's usually no line. It's also a great way to get rid of small change, as I'm not likely to give a cashier 80 cents in nickels but I have no problem dumping them into a machine!
    The hardest thing to do is produce, is it Zuchinni or Green Squash?? But for the most part, everything is bar coded so it's usually simple. and quick. The one drawback is that it announces to the world what produce you're buying. [​IMG]
    Do you have such a beast in your neighborhood?
    Jay
     
  2. Bill Catherall

    Bill Catherall Screenwriter

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    There's one in the Food For Less in my town. I'm really kind of surprised they have one and not Safeway or Albertsons, since 90% of the shoppers at that particular Food For Less use food stamps and WIC. But actually that could be even more convenient so when I go there for a few items I won't get stuck behind one of those shoppers (not that there's anything wrong with them, they just take twice as long to check out).
     
  3. Patrick Sun

    Patrick Sun Moderator
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    The Krogers near me has 4 of these DIY checkout stations, and I almost use them exclusively. Maybe I'm uncomfortable with some cashier making a judgment on my eating habits...
     
  4. Craig S

    Craig S Producer
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    Kroger's in Houston has been putting these in recently as well. My local Kroger's remodeled last year and I have been using them almost exclusively since then (about 6 months). Funny thing, last night I had to stop in after 10 PM and they had the self-service closed down, so I had to use a real cashier. It felt... strange. [​IMG]
     
  5. Kevin P

    Kevin P Screenwriter

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    One of the local Shop & Save stores has them, I think they just put them in in order to cut down on the number of cashiers they have on duty (which is/was always insufficient to begin with anyway!) However, the way it worked was you just scanned/entered your groceries but then someone would still have to bag them (though sometimes no one would come and I'd have to bag myself), and then you'd have to get into another line to pay. So it didn't really save time because there was 4 self-serve checkout lines and (as I recall) 3 registers to pay at but all too often only one was open so I'd have to stand in line just to pay.

    They should offer lower prices for those who scan themselves since the store's saving money.

    I don't go to that store anymore becuase they always had lousy service and were always out of things we needed. The one I go to now (another Shop & Save, they have a monopoly in the city I live in) doesn't have the self serve lanes but they do have marginally better service.

    KJP
     
  6. Denward

    Denward Supporting Actor

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    In Louisville there are many newish Kroger and they are in all of the large stores built within the last 10 years or so. For produce, there's a scale in the produce section where you punch in the 4 digit code and it produces a price sticker with bar code so you can just scan that at checkout.

    I like going through regular checkout with large purchases (let them do the bagging), but otherwise prefer the self check since the lines are usually much shorter. I hadn't thought about using up my small change though. That's a good idea. It's a lot better than pouring it into the machines at the front of the store that take a 7% cut and then give you a voucher for store purchases.
     
  7. Paul Richardson

    Paul Richardson Second Unit

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    When I first heard about this I thought it was a terrible idea. But then I tried it (some of my local stores have it for 12 items or less) and it works quite well.

    I've heard of a new technology (in Japan?) where instead of barcodes, every item has a magnetic chip inside (like those security bars in DVDs). To check out, you put your cart through an archway and it automatically adds up your total without having to scan anything. Sounds pretty cool if you ask me.
     
  8. Danny R

    Danny R Supporting Actor

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    every item has a magnetic chip inside
    I can just see some idiot accidentally eating one. From then on out he complains because there is an extra Fruit Loops tacked on to is total. [​IMG]
     
  9. Matt Stryker

    Matt Stryker Screenwriter

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    My only problem is that obnoxious "Please place the item...in the bag" voice (I'm sure all you Kroger shoppers know what I'm talking about). Turns out the "counter" where the bags are is actually a scale, to prevent people from cheating and not scanning. Unfortunately, some items vary enough by weight to throw it off.

    Plus it never uses the discount card right. And alcohol can be a hassle.
     
  10. Bill Slack

    Bill Slack Supporting Actor

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    Stop and Shop accross the street from me has four registers setup like this. I use it almost every time I shop (when I get a lot of food, I order it online and get delivered...)

    I find it much easier than dealing with most of the folks that work there.

    There's rarely a line in them, which is the main bonus. (I usually shop late at nite so there's only 1-2 clerks working, but usually all of the self-serve lines are open.)

    It scans my discount card w/o a problem.

    They do act a little flaky sometimes, but it seems to be improving. If you get too many things on it w/o bagging it yells at you. Thankfully they no longer require employee assistance to accept new items anymore (it used to keep beeping until an employee made it stop, even if you bagged!!)
     
  11. Jay H

    Jay H Producer

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    Ours is completely employee free, It uses the weights and also a motion scanner to know you're there and a touchscreen, as well as a card reader and cash input/outputs. Sometimes there is an employee bagging stuff for you but not always. I've only had a problem with the newspaper, I think cause the newspaper can sometimes vary in size from week to week, the store originally had the weight limit probably really small such that the first time I tried to buy the sunday paper there, it kept refusing it and I eventually had to go to a cashier to buy the paper.
    The other time is special kinds of produce such as oranges. They don't seem to use the product code which means sometimes you can sit there and try to find the item on their touch screens til you're blue in the face. If they were smart, they would have an option for you to type in the produce code and then the amount or the weight, depending on the price.
    It's always a female voice too, one day, I expect to hear Troy McClure (Phil Hartmann RIP) one day coming from the checkout stand. "Hi, I'm Troy McClure, you may remember...."
    [​IMG]
    Jay
     
  12. Kirk Gunn

    Kirk Gunn Screenwriter

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    Giant Grocery (A mid-eastern chain) is installing them in their new stores. Not sure if they are retro-fitting older stores or not.

    My kid gets a kick out of it !
     
  13. AndrewD

    AndrewD Stunt Coordinator

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    A Kroger near us has had one for a while, but I was surprised to see DIY lanes at a Home Depot in our area.
     
  14. Bob McLaughlin

    Bob McLaughlin Screenwriter

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    Got 'em here in Pittsburgh too. I like them because they don't seem to be popular with the other shoppers, therefore there is never a line!
     
  15. Brian Mansure

    Brian Mansure Second Unit

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    Several of the local Giant Food Stores around Harrisburg, PA use the self check-out registers.

    I believe a Rite Aid or two around here also has em.

    Like most everbody else, I prefer to use them as it is fairly convenient and quick because of no waiting lines.

    Matt, it's funny you mentioned the voice on the, Please place the item in the bag" thing.

    I was checking out the other day and the self check-out register I was at continualy said that phrase until a cashier came over and reset something. I remember thinking it was quite annoying.
     
  16. Bill Eberhardt

    Bill Eberhardt Stunt Coordinator

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    I never use them and quit going to the stores that have them. I figure those stores are just screwing some young people out of entry-level job experience. There is no discount for using them so what is the point? Now if they would give me 20% off for using them, I might just reconsider.
     
  17. MikeAlletto

    MikeAlletto Cinematographer

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  18. Chuck C

    Chuck C Cinematographer

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    Use em, Love em.

    the "Please place the item...in the bag" gets annoying...it's usu. not a prob at our Kroger's, but it's a real pain at Wal-Mart.
     
  19. Bill Catherall

    Bill Catherall Screenwriter

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    First of all, automation does not put people out of a job. It helps companies make more money, grow, and hire more people. What it does is shift the jobs. So instead of someone becoming a cashier they get a job doing something else. Just because a computer is ringing things up doesn't mean that some poor would-be cashier is sitting at home instead of working.
    Second, if prices were lower for using these self-check computers then there would be huge lines for them and we'd all be complaining about that. The convenience is the benefit. There's still a price for buying and maintaining this equipment, so it may not really be all that much cheaper than just hiring a human. The real value is the potential of having all checkout lanes open at all times instead of 2 or 3 depending on the day and time.
     
  20. Scott Merryfield

    Scott Merryfield Executive Producer
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    We have these at the neighborhood Kroger's, and also at the Kroger's in Myrtle Beach. I use them when the lines are shorter for the convenience of getting out of the store sooner.

     

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