Outrage erupts over ‘unreasonable’ self-service checkout rule

Dec 13, 2023
The experience sparked a lively discussion online among fellow shoppers, tired of grappling with the complexities of self-service checkouts, expressing their frustration on the matter. Source: Getty Images.

A shopper has caused a stir after their method for scanning and bagging items at the self-service checkout of the local supermarket was deemed to be incorrect.

During their most recent visit to the supermarket to pick up some groceries, the customer chose to scan their items in their trolley rather than putting them on the hi-tech conveyor belt recently introduced to stores.

While the shopper found this method innocent enough, supermarket staff saw differently and promptly alerted that the way of scanning was incorrect and “not allowed”.

After effectively being told off, the shopper took to Reddit to share their experience in a post titled, I got in trouble for scanning my own groceries wrong at Coles.

“Went to Coles this arvo, had 6 things in a big trolley. Used a self checkout but the kind with a conveyer belt. So usually with those you unload the trolley onto the belt, park trolley at the end, scan items and put them back in the trolley. But because I only had 6 items I just picked up the hand scanning gun and beeped everything in the trolley without putting them on the belt,” they began.

“The Coles staff member standing there told me I’m not allowed to do that and must place all items on the conveyer belt. I said nah this way is easier than getting them out and putting them back and because I only had a small number of items it was easy to make sure I got everything, obviously I would use the conveyer belt if I had more stuff. She said it’s not allowed because then we can’t watch you properly.

“That sounds like a Coles problem to me? If they think I’m going to steal something then check my receipt when I’m finished? But they assume people are stealing before they even scan their stuff. I know it’s not the staff members’ fault they don’t make the rules so I wasn’t rude or anything but far out. They want us to scan our own stuff but also want to tell me how to do it? Yeah, nah Coles.

“Oh and while I was having this interaction someone legged it through the other self checkout area with an armful of stolen stuff while the staff and security guard did nothing lol. So what would they have done if I didn’t scan all my items anyway.”

The experience sparked a lively discussion online among fellow shoppers, tired of grappling with the complexities of self-service checkouts, expressing their frustration on the matter.

One fellow shopper launched into a lengthy tirade about “the audacity of being told you’re doing it wrong when Coles and Woolworths have tricked us all into working for them for free”.

“By using the self-service checkouts, you are now doing the work of a cashier,” they added.

“I used to work as a checkout chick, and I was paid to do it, and I got a staff discount on my grocery shopping. Do we get a discount or cheaper prices as they promised? No, we don’t. They are ripping us blind and laughing all the way to the bank. Choosing beggars they are.”

“If you ain’t gonna pay me to do the job, then you don’t get to dictate how I do it,” another suggested.

“Sounds dumb!” one shopper began.

“Recently they told me that I can not scan nappies myself, I have to ask the attendant to scan my nappies at the self-scan area, wtf!”

Another shopper suggested a unique approach to their next shopping trip.

“That sounds like a new mission to break as many unreasonable “rules” as possible. When they pay me, they can instruct my method,” they wrote in response.

“If they wanted you to scan it their way. They wouldn’t have a hand scanner to begin with,” another claimed.

“Also, are they going to pay you workers compensation if you pull a muscle from lifting heavy items? No. F*#k them.”

The fiery dispute over scanning groceries has sparked a broader conversation about the evolving dynamics between shoppers and their local supermarkets.

As frustrations continue to rise among those who feel they’re working for free, it may be time for a reevaluation of the unspoken rules and a candid conversation about the expectations placed on customers at self-service checkouts.

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