Sometimes technology is a total pain in the butt as it never works when you need it, and sometimes it’s an absolutely beautiful thing. Smartphone apps that let you completely avoid standing in the checkout line is a fantastic example of the latter. Here are the current apps leading the way, all of which will save you time and frustration on your next trip to the store.
1. Sears Shop Your Way
The brain trust at Sears recently came out with an app called Shop Your Way that not only allows you to skip the checkout line, but you don’t even have to get out of your car.
You simply shop via the free app, select the “Store Pickup” option at checkout, then park in one of the reserved “In-Vehicle Pickup” spaces after you get an email notifying you that your order is ready.
At that point you notify the store, via the app, that you’ve arrived at the Sears location and they bring your order out to you.
The best part? If Sears doesn’t deliver the order to your car within 5 minutes, they’ll give you a $5 coupon for future purchases.
2. Sam’s Club “Scan & Go”
Sam’s Club has recently developed an in-house smartphone app they call “Scan & Go” that lets you do exactly that.
Walk around the warehouse, scan your items, pay for them via the app, then show your receipt to the greeter on the way out. Done.
Not only will you save time, but you’ll also save money as the app has a bunch of Sam’s deals integrated into it so you know exactly what’s on sale.
3. Starbucks Mobile Order & Pay
The free Starbucks Mobile Order app is also worth mentioning for those who need a caffeine addiction without having to wait for it.
You just place your order and pay via the app, then walk-in and head to where the drinks come out and ask the Barista for your order.
Boom. No standing in line. This is especially handy for large orders as you don’t have to write down or remember what everyone in the office (or home) ordered.
4. Walmart “Scan & Go”
How nice would it be to enter your local Walmart, scan the items you want to buy as you add them to your cart, then walk out without spending a second in the checkout line?
It would be awesome, right? Well with the Walmart Scan & Go app you can do exactly that.
The app keeps a running total of your purchase and you simply pay with your linked credit card when you’re done.
Just show your receipt from your phone to the greeter on the way out and you’re good to go. Walmart told me they do periodic random bag checks to make sure you bought everything in your bag.
There is a bit of an honor system going on here so it will be interesting to watch how this technology unfolds at Wally World, but I personally love the idea.
This Walmart app is still being tested in certain stores and has not gone national…yet. Here are the stores where you can currently use it:
5. Skip Checkout
The Skip Checkout app looked really cool on my initial inspection and I was excited to check it out.
Unfortunately, after I downloaded the app and started clicking around, I realized it was only good at grocery store chains in northern Utah and Idaho.
So if you live in this specific area of the U.S. you should check it out. The Skip app looks like a cool tool that’ll save you time at the grocery store.
Ask the Reader: Have you ever used one of these apps to avoid standing in the checkout line?
BTW, I’d love to see one from Costco as I’d shop there a lot more knowing I could get out of the warehouse quickly.
By Kyle James
Photo credit to frankieleon.