In the past decade, more and more businesses have moved away from in-person cashiers to self-checkout machines. According to CNN, “In 2020, 29% of transactions at food retailers were processed through self-checkout, up from 23% the year prior,” citing data from food industry association FMI.
However, self-checkout machines are not without their issues. Users have complained about buggy interfaces and having the machines eat their money, and attorneys have warned that using the machines can present potential legal issues for customers.
One aspect that isn’t often discussed about self-checkout machines is the pressure they can put on customers to complete their orders as quickly as possible. Now, TikTok user Andres Perez (@mr.cilantro) has visited Aldi’s new self-checkout machines to satirize just that.
@mr.cilantro Am I wrong? ##mrcilantroseasoning##funny##aldi##aldiselfcheckout##groceries ♬ original sound – Mr. Cilantros seasoning
In a video with over 1.2 million views, the TikToker can be seen approaching a self-checkout machine at Aldi.
“Aldi has self-checkout now,” Perez says, approaching the machine. The video then cuts to him sliding items over the scanners as quickly as possible, letting items fall as he does.
In the comments section, many users agreed that Aldi’s self-checkout machines were too stressful with their insistence that customers complete their orders.
“PLEASE SCAN AN ITEM!!! SELECT ANOTHER OPTION!! OR FINISH AND PAY!!!” joked a user, imitating the sound of the machine.
“Yes! It yells at you every half a second to scan an item. Like give me a d*mn minute!!” added another.
“I don’t like it. yelled at me cause I was to slow,” shared a third. “like I don’t work here ya I’m slow.”
Others claimed that, by scanning items quickly, they were simply attempting to imitate the cashiers at Aldi, who are famous for scanning items at an incredibly rapid pace.
According to posters on a Reddit thread about the topic, this high speed occurs because Aldi employees are timed during each checkout.
“Cashiers are timed for time BETWEEN customers, How long DURING each individual customer, AND whether or not you ‘pre dipped’ your card in the pos machine,” alleged the original poster.
“I’m a current Aldi cashier and I can confirm this post,” wrote a user in the comments section. “…When a customer asks me to slow down, I simply tell them ‘Unfortunately I’m timed and have to go this fast or I could lose my job.’”
Back on TikTok, users echoed these Redditors’ experiences.
“Wife used to work there. Those scan per minute stats they have to maintain are wild,” stated a user.
“I was a shift manager there. EVERYTHING is timed & calculated to be as fast as possible,” offered a second.
The Daily Dot reached out to Aldi and Perez via email.