Self service checkouts

I’ll let you into a secret i do the shopping in our household. I go to our big Tesco and fill a trolley with enough food to last us a week (it would probably last most households longer, but we like our food!).

I’m not showing off, or saying I’m hard done to, because I’m not. I’m just saying, that’s all. For the items I’ve forgotten or for something nice to eat as a treat, my beloved will go to Asda or Sainsburys. If it’s the weekend then we’ll often both go whilst we at out and about.

So, I speak with some experience…

I like the idea of self service checkouts, but they can be really hard work.

I mean, you’ve got to either have your own bag ready, or use a shop supplied one. There is no chance to change your mind partway through the process, when you think that perhaps you do need a bag after all, or that you want to put an item in a separate bag. If I had a pound for every time I heard “unexpected item in bagging area” I’d certainly be wealthier than I am now.

Sometimes items don’t scan, which makes it tricky. At least when a cashier is doing it, it’s their problem. ¬†When you’re scanning your own shopping, it’s your problem. You’re the one holding up the queue. You’re the one who can’t find the bar code, or flatten the packaging down until the bar code can be read.

For age- restricted items, you’ll need to wait for a member of staff to approve your purchase, and it’s likely that you can’t continue scanning items.

Currently at Sainsburys, and I’ve only experienced it here, discounts are only applied once you’ve selected the payment type. This is appalling from a customer’s point of view, and I wonder home many actual abandoned baskets it has led to.

I’m not even convinced that using the self service checkout actually is quicker. Of you pay by card it seems to take ages, and posting coins into the slot and waiting for them to register takes forever too.

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