Woman talking(l+r), Five below sign(c)

JHVEPhoto/Shutterstock @minecraftluverrr/Tiktok (Licensed)

‘Just let me do my job’: Five Below worker issues PSA about the ‘self-checkout’ area, says it’s not really a self-checkout

‘I hate it, but it’s literally my job.’


Melody Heald


Stores nationwide are slowly removing and restricting self-checkouts. And the retail discount store, Five Below, is one of them. Here, a Five Below employee gave a public service announcement to “entitled customers” who were disrespectful due to the new policy.

In a nine-second clip, TikTok user Mads (@minecraftluverrr) stood at what used to be a self-checkout. The Five Below employee revealed her thoughts. “5Below isn’t self checkout,” she wrote in the text overlay. However, it didn’t stop customers from being rude toward her. “Why do ppl belittle me for it, you sound really entitled. Just let me do my job.” 

Furthermore, Mads added in the caption, “i dont wanna do it but it’s literally paying my bills.”

The Daily Dot reached out to Mads via Instagram direct message and TikTok comment as well as Five Below via contact form. The video racked up over 629,000 views. In the comments section, viewers defended customers who aren’t happy about this policy.

“i dont think its ppl being entitled, i think its the fact corporate put selfcheckout machines and then still make employees do it. they couldve just kept the old registers,” one viewer said.

“Girl it’s been self checkout for years and now all of a sudden there’s a worker there rushing me and packing my bags wrong. This is NEW policy people are allowed to be mad,” a second agreed.

“this is so confusing? usually the employee just watches everyone scan their stuff?” a third stated.

On the other hand, retail workers jumped to Mads’ defense.

“As a 5 Below Employee. I sympathize. I hate it, but it’s literally my job. corporate makes sure we do this,” one user commented.

“The people mad def do not work retail like we do not wanna have to check u out either,” a second remarked.

Five Below changes course

In a follow-up video, Mads clarified some things about this new policy. “Back in March, Five Below changed it to ‘associate assisted checkout,” she explains. “Then, at least for my store, within the same month or month after, it was changed to ‘associate checkout.’ We’ve been checking everybody out.” Although some locations are more laid back, hers isn’t. “I don’t really have the option to give people, like, ring themselves up. I wish I did but my store just doesn’t let me,” she said. 

Regardless, the content creator explained how being mean to workers over a company policy doesn’t change it. “You’re just making that employee have a bad day. You’re not making a difference or anything,” she said. Moreover, Mads elaborated that the original video was for people who mistreat employees because of the new policy. “It’s the people who treat me poorly because of the new policy that I can’t control nor can I change,” she explained. 


i dont wanna do it but it’s literally paying my bills….

♬ original sound – archivejunkie

What is Five Below’s new self-checkout policy?

Five Below doesn’t allow customers to scan, bag, or use the self-checkout screen. Customers are permitted to use the pin pad to pay for their items. However, the company made different attempts to curb the rising theft. In January, they implemented the “associate-assisted checkout.”

Update 12:04pm CT, July 8: During an interview with the Daily Dot, Mads revealed that she works at a Five Below in Northern Michigan. According to the employee, it’s been a coin toss about how customers react to the new policy.

“Customers have reacted 50/50. I understand the annoyance of waiting in line and it definitely is a weird setup but customers can be extremely rude I’ve heard multiple horror stories of customers with associates as well as my own,” she shared via TikTok direct message.

What gets under Mads’ skin is how customers take out their anger out on her.

“I don’t mind people not knowing the policy I just wish people didn’t take out their frustration onto me,” she said. “I really enjoy my job and I love interacting with the customers I’m always trying to give everyone the best experience they can have.”

The Daily Dot