Kids have piggy banks. Adults have their version too…….the “jar”. No matter what, there always comes a point where you want to see how much change you really have. I’ll admit, I’ve always done it the old fashioned way. As you can see above, I still have plenty of coin wrappers…..quarters, dimes, nickels, and pennies.
I’d spend so much time counting and rolling up coins, then follow it up with a trip to the bank. While I’d heard of Coinstar, I never really knew what one used Coinstar for….until now.
Yesterday I headed to a local Brookshire’s store here in Dallas/Ft Worth, at a location where they had a Coinstar kiosk. My 4 year old helped me prepare for the trip, which included a quick lesson on what different coins looked like. We took the coins out of Mommy’s jar and placed them into a Ziploc bag for traveling.
I’d never shopped at Brookshire’s before……and I have to admit that I loved it. While some prices were higher, they had a large selection of organic foods. Best of all, they double and triple coupons. You guys know what a treat that is. As far as my 4-year old was concerned, she was a new fan as soon as she saw the child-size grocery cart.
We easily spotted the Coinstar kiosk, although there was a Brookshire’s sign that was blocking the side view of it …..the side where customers enter the store.
I first noticed a touch screen monitor which was where I started my transaction. It clearly spelled out the four options I had once I deposited my coins in the kiosk. There was just once problem. Apparently I was moving too slow choosing my options from screen to screen. I didn’t think I was. :-) So it kept taking me back to the start. It was a bit frustrating.
While there were many Coinstar options, I chose to deposit my funds (my coin total) in my Paypal account. A service fee of 5.9% applied to this which I thought was a little much, but I have to admit that it sure does beat rolling up coins and heading to the bank. I’m always going to the grocery store, so handling coins this way is very convenient.
I wasn’t sure what depositing funds into Paypal would entail, so I made sure to bring along my password just in case. There can be a lot of people around in a grocery store, and security is important with Paypal, so I was very glad that I never needed my password. In fact, I’m guessing that because this was a deposit of funds, all I needed to enter was my email address associated with my account. Easy and secure.
Next it was time for some action…….the coin conversion. My daughter poured the coins in the kiosk and we watched as the screen showed the numbers adding up. A couple of coins were rejected. Turns out they were from Singapore. Must have been from a trip I took years ago!
Boy was I surprised. I thought we only had about $10, but my daughter (who can’t count money yet), was closer with a guess of $20. We had $18.97. After the service fee, it came to $17.85, which was then deposited in my Paypal account. A receipt printed out for me.
How easy was that? We’ll be using Coinstar Kiosks in the future……….how did I never know about these?
As for my first trip to Brookshire’s…..we’re fans. There was the kid-sized grocery cart, the sweet cashier who let my daughter scan some groceries and push buttons on the cash register, and the young man who carried 2 bags of groceries out to my car for me. Um, that is rare. The employees were top notch!!
Be sure to check out my entire shopping experience on Google +!
(I have been paid (at Coinstar’s request) to try and blog about Coinstar’s products/services as part of a Collective Bias shopper insights study. All opinions are my own.)