Attention Walmart Shoppers: Rules of Etiquette when Shopping

Whenever I go to my regular store to go grocery shopping it is usually a fairly pleasant experience. I have notice that when I go to other stores a lot of little things happen to make the experience not so nice. Most of these things have to do with courtesy to other shoppers. Bottom line, shopping at Walmart is like going to a different country. People do things at Wal-Mart that they would not do if they were anywhere else. If you are going to Walmart, remember just because other people act like “Yahoos” (Gulliver’s Travels, by Jonathan Swift) at Walmart is no reason for you to behave that way
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Before you leave your house, check what you are wearing. People will go to Walmart wearing clothes that most people would not consider appropriate for any other public place, such as pajamas (see www.peopleofWalmart.com). To add to the rolled out of bed and came straight to the store look they also often neglect to comb their hair. You are not invisible just because you are in Walmart. Any person with a camera phone could take your picture and then you could be the next star of peopleofWalmart.com. Next get your preferred form of payment (debit card or cash) and your shopping list, so you can get only what you need and not buy a bunch of cheap junk you only want because it is inexpensive.

Once you get to the store use some etiquette in the parking lot. If you have to drop someone off, please, either drive past the stop sign or if you have to stop before the stop sign, do it when you are at least 100 ft. away. Do not, I repeat DO NOT drop passengers off at the stop sign. More importantly, do not stop and talk to other shoppers while you are on any of the thoroughfares. Then as you walk into the store, walk near the parked cars, not four people in a row in the middle of the isle. This space is meant for cars to drive and while you may be as big as a truck, you do not qualify as a motor vehicle.

Now that you have made it safely into the store it should be smooth sailing. Select a cart and walk down the aisles as if you were driving a car. Stay to the right side so that there is plenty of room for another cart to pass on the left side. Then while looking for your items on the shelves, stand in back of or in front of your cart. Then when others are coming down the aisle they will be go around you; otherwise there will be a back up and if you are like most rude people, you will be mad that other shoppers are rushing you. As you finish in each aisle, you will approach the end of each aisle. Slow down and look to make sure that no one is in the way. Just like driving, people going straight have the right of way.

Have all the groceries on your list? Good. Now it is time to check out. Choose the lane that is appropriate for the number of groceries. “15 items or Fewer” means that if you have around 15 items you may use that aisle. No one is going to quibble about the candy bar you grabbed from the shelf. If you go to an unlimited self check out, do your produce last. Those are the items that are most likely not to register correctly. You might as well be packing all the rest of your groceries while you are waiting for the cashier to come give assistance.

Put all your boxes together, your cans, your meat and dairy together and your bread and your chips. It makes it easier for the cashier to find like items to pack together and like items should be in the same bags when you unpack your groceries. This makes it easier and faster. Make sure that any poultry is in its own bag, that thin plastic packaging leaks very easily. Cross contamination between your fruits and your chicken would not be a good thing.

Then make your way to the exit and leave the same way you entered. If someone is going to get the car and pick you up at the entrance, follow the same directions as for being dropped off. Do not stop at the stop sign right in front of the entrance. That aisle is designated for driving, not parking.

Shopping can be fairly easy if you just follow these simple little rules. If not then, don’t be surprised if you end up on www.peopleof walmart.com with your black underwear showing through your white pajama bottoms.