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Being a More Considerate Shopper

Apr 06, 2024 11:02AM ● By Debra Caffrey

I love grocery shopping, but I know that many people dread this task. It can be tedious, time-consuming, and, honestly, the process can get annoying when other shoppers interfere with or even downright ruin your experience. In fact, I find that the most draining aspect of food shopping can be dealing with the “traffic” and behavior of other patrons. Since the grocery store is where you have so much control over your spending and saving, concentration is crucial.      

            Even if we get annoyed by others, we may not realize we might also be contributing our own rude or unthoughtful habits at the store. Here are some grocery store no-no’s to be mindful so that we can all have a peaceful and productive shopping experience.

·       Incorrect Checkout Behavior: If you’re using the express self-checkout, be sure to adhere to the item limit. Similarly, if you have five items and line up knowingly behind someone who has a cartful, you may want to move to another lane. This can make the big-haul shopper and the cashier feel pressured. Finally, give the person in front of you plenty of space to finish the checkout process. It will not make anything go faster if you “pull up” right behind them while they’re still at the conveyor belt.

·       Ignoring Traffic Flow: It’s one thing to linger and enjoy shopping, but it’s another to be unaware that there’s a whole people-moving flow. Keep your cart on the “right side of the road,” pull over if you need to stop for a bit, and please be mindful of how your slow pace might be slowing lots of people behind you down.

·       Oblivious Cell Phone Use: Maybe it’s just me, but I’m really trying to concentrate when I’m grocery shopping. Everyone has the right to talk on the phone, but perhaps your loud conversation is distracting to others, especially when you wind up in the same aisles the whole time.

·       Hogging a Spot: I have been guilty of camping out to chat with an acquaintance I’ve run into, but it’s important to be aware of when someone else needs the spot you have claimed. If you need to spend ten minutes debating which hot sauce to buy, that’s not a problem, but being ignorant to someone patiently waiting to grab theirs is. Pull over, do your thing, but please be ready to move out of the way as soon as you see someone.

Finally, shopping etiquette extends into the parking lot too. Be careful not to walk in front of cars even if pedestrians with carts should have the right of way. Return your cart to the proper place. When you’re looking to park, don’t stalk someone who is still in the middle of loading up their car. With these rules, hopefully we can all have a more pleasurable trip.

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