Shoppers in Tasmania Express Concerns Over Mandatory Self-Service Checkouts

Some shoppers in Tasmania are pledging to boycott supermarkets that compel them to use self-serve checkouts when paying for their groceries, opting for stores with attendants instead.

An unhappy shopper, dissatisfied with recent changes at Coles Kingston, rekindled the ongoing online debate on Tuesday night and declared they would not return due to the loss of the serviced express checkout.

“I declined to use a self-checkout,” stated the shopper who came in to buy eggs, echoing the concerns of many others about the diminishing level of customer service and its potential impact on vulnerable individuals.

“I definitely dislike [the self-service machines]. I am elderly and sometimes only purchase a few items,” mentioned one shopper, while another described interactions with the machines as “tiring.”

On the other hand, some shoppers insist on exclusively using the self-service option and actively avoid the remaining checkout lanes.

In response to similar complaints from people across the country, Coles has previously asserted that “two-thirds of customers” prefer using self-checkouts over traditional lanes, a statistic that is supposedly on the rise – a claim questioned by many shoppers.

Many believe that the reported “increase in popularity” is a result of customers feeling compelled to use self-checkouts rather than choosing to do so voluntarily.

According to a Coles spokesperson, “Self-service checkouts are a convenient and efficient option for customers when shopping in our stores,” as they reassured that team members are always available in the service area to assist customers if needed.

Woolworths stores also emphasise a self-service approach, while Tasmanian Hill Street, Salamanca Fresh, and independent grocers continue to provide full-service checkouts.

Customers are reminded to be considerate of workers who “do not make the decisions” but are “there to assist” if necessary.

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