I love self-checkouts. No matter how many items I have, I will use them, because I actually like ringing up my groceries. But how many items can you bring to self-checkout?

At the Hannaford Supermarket on Forest Avenue in Portland, they must have 20 self-checkouts or more. There's a whole array of them on both sides of the store's front end. I'm not shy about taking $100 worth of groceries through the self-checkout. But once in a while, I get the evil eye from someone waiting in line behind me.

Horrified Senior Woman
Scott Griessel

I say "once in a while" because this Hannaford has so many self-checkouts that most times, you barely have to wait at all.

There are two different signs at the Forest Avenue Hannaford self-checkout area. One uses the word 'express'.

Jeff Parsons - Townsquare Media
Jeff Parsons - Townsquare Media

I know that 'express' typically means between eight and 14 items or less. So if the sign says 'express', I don't use it if I have more than that.

However, there are newer self-checkouts that have smaller signs without the word 'express', and if I have a full cart, I have no problem using them.

One time, I asked a cashier if there was a limit to the number of items people could bring through the self-checkout. Faith, one of the nicest and most pleasant cashiers there, said that right now "It's like the Wild West. There's no limit."

That was back when the self-checkouts were relatively new, but I've seen no signs that say that have changed since then, aside from the ones labeled 'express'. So go ahead and give me the stink eye if I'm not in the express lane with my full, large cart of groceries. I can take it.

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