I have purchased several totes that are offered in various stores to use when I grocery shop in keeping up with being echo-friendly. The problem I seem to have is that the stores are not willing to help with bagging the items for you. Most larger grocery stores now have the carousels with their bags in place (plastic bags) so there is no room to put your totes.
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I have my eco bags too, but I haven't tried WalMart yet, with their carousel bagger...I shop at a local chain HyVee and the Fareway and they are more than happy to bag in the fabric ones I bring along, so is Target...I will post feedback when I get brave enough to try out WalMart.
Have you considered contacting the store manager to see if there is a way to have your items bagged? Could the totes be hung over the plastic bags on the carousel, or placed on top?
It seems counter-productive to good customer service to have you bag your own items just because you use eco-friendly totes. You can't be the only person who has had this problem in the store. Perhaps they have even lost customers. It might be worthwhile to point all this out to the store manager in a non-confrontational way.
I work at Wal-mart and have no problem using the cloth bags, as long as you give them to me at the beginning and ask me to use them. There is enough space between the bags and the edge of the carousel to put the bag and bag your items.
Many of the stores around the Pacific NW are encouraging the cloth bags. Everyone is selling them and some stores are starting to charge extra if you use plastic or paper bags.
I shop mostly at Winco and you have to bag your own groceries there (everyone does). But they give a discount for bringing your own bags. I love the new sturdy bags. I even bought one at a local bookstore recently and used it as wrapping for a present I was giving.
I would stand there and continue to watch your items ring up and THEN bag your stuff. By then, the cashier will help you bag to move things along and get to the next customer-if not, oh well!! If the store bags for plastic then they should bag for cloth as well.
You can try examining the receipt very carefully while your bagged groceries wait. If someone complains you can make your point about having to bag your own groceries is the trouble.
I don't know if you drive to the mart, but here is what I do. I place the groceries in the shopping cart and replace them as they come through the checkout.
I use the canvas bags from Alberson's at Wal-Mart and have yet to encounter a problem. I usually put the bags before my purchases and ask the clerk if she can use them instead of the plastic bags? Politeness before any action is always a good thing :)
I'm in a different country to you, Australia, but we are really being encouraged to quit the plastic bags and use the environmentally acceptable ones. I don't have a problem in any store. I just say politely 'In the green bag(s) please" and they pack them the same as if it was in the store plastic bags.
Seems to me that Downunderchick is doing DOUBLE work. Bring bags INTO store w/you. If you have multiples of items place them in the bag in the cart & THEN put on the counter. Cashier will take - say 1 of the 4 & scan it 4 times & put back in bag.
I have used mine at Walmart, and some of the cashiers will bag in my canvas totes, others have me bag my own. When I have to bag my own purchases, it annoys me. After all, they are getting paid for it, not me. I also set my purchases on the belt/counter in the groups I want them bagged in, otherwise they put heavy items in with the bread, and we all know what happens then, or they put cleaners in with my food, hate that. So as i fill my cart, and unload at checkout, i put cleaners together, canned good together; you get the idea. This seems to really help.
I use bags I purchased from Meijer's they have the largest and best bags around here. I take them to any of the other stores and when the clerk starts to ring my purchase up, I let them know that I'm using my own bags and I hand them to the clerk. These bags also have a tag inside which will hook onto the bag stand making it easy to use.
I've never had to bag my own. I do open the bags for them as sometimes I might have as many as 6 or 7 bags. It's probably all in letting them know before they start to ring you up. Other wise I would just leave my purchase there, contact a manager and tell them that unless they bag my purchase like other stores (unless this is a store where everyone bags their own), I will not shop there and will tell all my friends not to shop there. I would not leave the line until the manager came. Believe me they don't like losing money. All it takes is one dissatisfied customer to bring about change.
Hand the bags to the cashier and ask her to put them on the turn style. They do here when we ask them.
Honey like the lady who works at Wal-Mart says give her the bags before hand and Wal-Mart is selling bags too. They are green also like someone said too just tell the cashier that you have bags, coupons and save a tape cards before hand. Remember smile on your face and a plesant attitude will work wonders.
I don't mind bagging my own, but I usually have to resort the bags when I get to the car if someone else helps. Otherwise, I can just put the things that need to go in the cooler straight from the shopping cart. When I go to shop, I put my bags on the bottom of cart, so they aren't buried in the cart when I am checking out.
There isn't a single grocery store in my state that won't bag a person's own bags for them. They encourage you to bring your bags. You must complain to the manager. They probably don't realize the checkers are not loading your bags for you. In the last state where I lived I bought groceries at Walmart. Walmart does not sell groceries here. In that state I had a problem with checkers leaving the plastic bags on the carousel. I would get home and not have something I knew I bought. So I called the store and asked whose responsibility it was to see that my groceries got in the cart and she beat around the bush about it. I finally made her admit that it really was the checker's responsibility. So thenj I told her to make sure her checkers knew that. Here, I take my own bags and have boycotted Walmart for several years because of other practices of theirs.
I do about 90% of my shopping at Aldi's and have for over 30 years. I've always bagged (or boxed) my own groceries. This is something they don't do, nor do they provide bags (except for sale). There is a long counter in the front of the store for this purpose. I bring the bags or use a box. I prefer to pack my own since I can sort them at the store for where they will go when I get home. Much easier to unpack and put away.
Different stores an' chains have different practices. Super discount-type stores like WinCo you bag your own groceries all the time (I've only been there a couple times, too far away from my home to shop there). Here in Tehachapi CA we have Albertsons and SaveMart (and a couple very small local grocers). Albertsons bags your groceries, your bags or theirs. They used to give 5cents a bag return when you brought your own bags, don't any more though. SaveMart, now, they're always there to bag for you. We put our own bags on the conveyor belt first (that way they know for sure you want your own bags used) and the checker counts out how many bags you've brought and credits you 5cents/bag. I have one large canvas bag that I usually keep all my other canvas bags in, and on large shopping trips just grab the whole big bag. Many times, they've given me credit for all the bags, even when I only need a couple! And the bagger never fails to ask if we want help carting the groceries to our car. Love my SaveMart!
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