While shoppers are increasingly accustomed to paying for plastic bags at checkout, they’re still getting used to the idea of shopping cart rentals.
Grocery chain Aldi requires a quarter to rent one of its shopping carts, and it’s become such a divisive ask that at least one workaround made the rounds on TikTok. Samm (@Sammpinkoff) is one of the TikTokers who stumbled across this workaround and put it to the test herself after forgetting her coin in the car. It didn’t quite go as planned.
“I saw this shit on TikTok about Aldi and using your house key, and now my key is fucking stuck,” Samm says in a video that was viewed over 4.3 million times.
The video showcases Samm trying to pull her clearly stuck key out of the payment slot mounted on the cart’s handle.
Samm issued a warning to other TikTokers in the caption of her video. “THEY LIED I GOT MY KEY STUCK AND HAD TO TELL ALDI EMPLOYEE I SAW A TIKTK AND WANTED TO TRY IT LOL , don’t try it,” she wrote.
@sammpinkoff THEY LIED I GOT MY KEY STUCK AND HAD TO TELL ALDI EMPLOYEE I SAW A TIKTK AND WANTED TO TRY IT LOL , don’t try it #fyp #aldi ♬ original sound – Samm
Viewers suggested Samm used the wrong end of the key and vowed the hack works when done correctly. Others pointed out that Aldi returns customers’ quarters after their visit anyway, and there was no need to risk her key. The Daily Dot has reached out to Samm via TikTok comment and Aldi via email.
“Girl, just go in and ask for a quarter,” one viewer claimed. “They will give you one.”
In response, Samm revealed she was in a rush to fulfill an order from Instacart, a grocery delivery service, and wanted to test the hack instead of going back to the car.
Aldi claims on its site that “this 25 cent deposit ultimately saves our customers money because we don’t have to hire extra staff to collect grocery carts.”
While Aldi has always swapped shopping cart privileges for a quarter, other grocery chains, like Walmart, have faced backlash for allegedly recently implementing similar strategies to cut down the staff it takes to collect wayward shopping carts.
As many companies will try to do anything to cut costs, making the public return shopping carts to their home may become commonplace—and, in turn, we will surely see a rise in tips and tricks to hack the system.