At many supermarkets, the coin for the shopping carts is again mandatory. Customer unfriendly, but according to the supermarket groups they have to, to prevent the trolleys from roaming throughout the neighborhood.
Swearing under your breath, handbags are searched and at the service desk there is a line for plastic coins. The reintroduction of the shopping cart token is especially annoying. “It is clearly marked,” says the boy from the AH who puts the carts back in line at the entrance in the Hoogzandveld shopping center in Nieuwegein. ,,From today it has to be again.”
Last spring the carts were unlocked, because you could just get corona because of that fiddling with that dirty chain. A few weeks ago, the first supermarkets started with coins again. And the cleaning immediately came to a head. The man with the disinfectant syringe has disappeared, as has the distinction between ‘dirty’ and ‘clean’ shopping carts. If you want to disinfect, you have to use a spray and roll of paper yourself.
Albert Heijn is ‘in principle’ still coinless, but the trolleys are still on the chain here and there. “That happens, for example, if a store notices that shopping carts are floating around in the area. We don’t want that, so from that perspective we choose to use coins. Incidentally, we still adjust the number of shopping carts to the number of customers that can enter. That’s one customer per 10 square meters for essential stores that sell food.”
Such a shopping cart costs between 130 and 160 euros; you don’t want to lose too much of it
It is no different at competitor Jumbo: at one location the coin is required again, at the other the customers return the cart anyway. There is no question of any relaxation with regard to the RIVM guidelines, according to the head office. Shopping carts and baskets are cleaned as much as possible for our customers. We also offer customers the option of cleaning shopping carts and baskets themselves. In addition, many stores have a car wash, a car wash especially for shopping carts.”
Supermarket expert Erik Hemmes understands the return of the coin. “Such a shopping cart costs between 130 and 160 euros; you don’t want to lose too much of it.” Whoever puts a coin in it wants that coin back and returns the cart. This also works with the free plastic coin that you can get at the service desk. “It’s just a plastic coin, but it’s your plastic coin, your property, so bring the cart back.”
The coin prevents carts from being scattered here and there in the parking lot or from being taken and roaming through the neighborhood. Wagons lying around are not only a problem in working-class neighbourhoods, Hemmes knows. “In Hilversum, where I live, they are sometimes also at villas worth one and a half million.”
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