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Get Checks Out of the Checkout Line November 2, 2006

Posted by federalist in Uncategorized.
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Why, in this day and age, are there still people writing checks in stores?  For groceries?  This should be absolutely forbidden.

If Dante were writing Inferno today I am certain that he would reserve a special place in Hell for people who:

  • Drive in the left lanes when they aren’t passing.
  • Use cell phones loudly in public.
  • Hold up checkout lines writing checks.

We are all familiar with these first two complaints; the world will never lack for those who are inconsiderate and/or oblivious.  But the last of these three — the check-writers — compound their carelessness with stupidity.  For with every checking account is associated a check (“Debit”) card.  And when you use that check card instead of writing a check, the store actually pays you (typically a 1% rebate from your bank) for the convenience you are sharing with its bookkeepers and other customers.

There is no reason for people to carry a checkbook into a store, and — after their cart has been rung up — sit there filling out a date, an amount, spelling out the amount, and as if the Pay To and Date weren’t enough, writing in a little memo to remember that “Acme” is in fact a grocery store, and they were in fact purchasing groceries.  And then after laboriously signing their full name, and adding a bunch of personally identifying information required by the store to process checks, flipping over to their checkbook register and copying all of that information over again.  All this while three people in the adjacent line with more merchandise have completed their transaction by swiping a card, punching in a number, and moving along — secure in the knowledge that their transaction is fully accounted for and available online (often within just hours), and that should they lose their card it is a lot easier to replace than the entire account that would have to be cancelled if their checkbook were lost.

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Comments»

1. Steve - June 5, 2008

Get over it. Life is not difficult because someone writes a check or pays cash for merchandise. Life would be difficult if you didn’t have any food and you didn’t have a way to pay for it, like many in the third world. In case you haven’t noticed, this is a “free market system” for a free people, you don’t like it, shop somewhere else that only takes credit cards, fat chance you’ll find one.

2. Kira - August 27, 2015

You don’t have to “get over it.” I completely agree, Fed. Steve is probably over the age of 60. It drives me crazy when someone pulls out a checkbook in the grocery line or any line for that matter. Actually, it doesn’t bother me if they have it mostly filled out ahead of time, BUT what is insane is when that person then takes the time to fill out the register! Really?! Do it later at home or even in the car. Maybe move to an empty area while still in the store….just get out of the way so the other 10+ people behind you can checkout with cash or card. Checks do have their purpose but NOT in a store checkout line! Oh, for those who say that they might forget to record the info, you guys definitely need a debit/credit card or cash! Checks are NOT for those with poor memories.


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