Flying Under the Radar: Paperless receipts? Only where the sun shines

Going green, using less paper, only printing copies when you have to… everyone is on board with protecting our environment, right? Well, have you looked at your last cash register receipt? Chances are you can’t miss it.

If you buy several hundred dollars of food at a grocery store, the receipt will naturally be longer than usual. But does a receipt for a bottle of pop and a pack of gum at Walgreens or CVS have to be long enough to cover the distance from where you’re standing in the store to where your car is in the parking lot? And even when you select the “Email receipt to me” option on the card swipe display, it still prints out a receipt that can double as a tape measure.

Ok, it’s nice to see how much we saved at the store (although it never feels like we saved as much as the receipt says) but do we really need the additional “win $3,000 by taking a survey and let us know how we did” info below or all the colorful coupons for places we’ll never visit on the back? And is it just me, or does it seem like the cashier always has to install a new roll of register tape just when it’s my turn to check out?

Last weekend in Madison, WI, I bought an item at a sidewalk sale happening at Urban Outfitters where the checkout was set up at a table outside the store. The entire transaction took place with the help of a cell phone app and an attached credit card swiper. All I had to do was sign the on-screen signature line with my finger and tap the email my receipt button – that was it! I received the email receipt about 10 seconds later.

So let me get this straight, I can do a paperless and much more efficient transaction on a phone while standing at a portable table in the sun rather than answering prompt after on-screen prompt at the cash register while waiting inside a chilly drug store?

Hey, are those receipts printed on recycled paper?

Eric Scott is a Pioneer Press community contributor and former TV newscast producer now working in corporate communications. He serves on the Board of Directors for the Lincolnshire Lightning Travel Soccer Club and on the Stevenson High School Foundation’s Communications Committee.

Want to blog for the Pioneer Press websites? Email community news manager Richard Ray at Richard@Aggrego.com.

Tags:

0 Comments

Modal