We're about halfway to the holidays so before we all ambush stores, let's review some etiquette.

Self-checkout is perfect for those who, like me, prefer to forgo human interaction to instead scream at a computer screen: "there's no unscanned item in the bagging area!"


Like with most things, there's just some inherent protocol to using self-checkout. If the computer system is hard for you to maneuver, that's fine but it's probably best for you to use the actual checker so you don't drastically stall the line. Scan your stuff at a decent pace, as you can. But the biggest piece of self-checkout etiquette that was violated to me at Target this weekend is this:

Back. Off.

This is the grocery store version of tailgating. In the case of Target, they have a nice little designated self-checkout line area. There's literally no need to walk up to the handle of one's cart on the other side of the self-checkouts and stand there and try not to gawk.

Even if it's a crowded self-checkout area (which in this instance, it definitely wasn't and I was scanning at a fine speed), you can still at least try to maintain a respectable distance away from people. If there's not a self-checkout line, still try to stay a bit away from folks trying to scan their stuff.

Be patient at the self-checkout too. That single parent is trying to scan their stuff and the little toddler isn't making it easy. That one gal is trying to checkout with some awkwardly-shaped bulky stuff that has a hard-to-find barcode. Patience, fam.

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