Supermarket ALDI will roll out self-serve checkouts in select stores with only card payment options available, sparking debate among shoppers online.
The German supermarket will trial the first self-service checkouts in 10 stores across New South Wales, with the Darlinghurst store in Sydney the first in line.
Unlike the Coles and Woolies machines which accept notes and coins, ALDI’s self-serve checkouts don’t have a cash payment option and only accept cards. Besides that, most other features appear similar including a scale for fresh produce and a weighted area for bags.
The discount supermarket said it will “closely” monitor the trial in NSW stores, before deciding on whether to roll out the registers nationally.
“We make business decisions in line with our low-cost model so we can consistently provide high-quality groceries at the lowest prices,” said an ALDI spokesperson.
“Since self-serve checkouts entered the Australian grocery sector we’ve been watching with keen interest the value and efficiencies they drive for business as well as the convenience they provide customers.”
ALDI stores included in the trial will have between six and eight registers each and will be given new stock baskets to assist shoppers. The German supermarket said ALDI baskets would appeal to both regular and new customers, and shoppers purchasing only a few items at a time.
Reactions to the news have been mixed, with ALDI fans sharing various opinions about the self-serve checkouts online.
This is a far cry from ALDI’s stance on self-serve checkouts in 2019, when the supermarket said it had no plans to introduce the registers in stores, citing research suggesting shoppers preferred face-to-face interactions at checkouts.