In brief: Arguments can be made for and against the use of cash at retail. Proponents point to the fact that cash is harder to track, leaving less of a paper trail behind. But, it often takes longer to handle and as highlighted here, requires more staffers. Digital transactions, conversely, are usually faster but may not be accessible to everyone.
Amazon’s first cashier-less convenience store to hit New York opened on Tuesday in Manhattan. The 1,300-square-foot facility, located in the Brookfield Place mall near the World Trade Center, is unique in that it’s the first Amazon Go store to accept cash.
The key concept behind Amazon’s cashier-less convenience store was the ability to stroll in, grab what you want and leave without having to wait in a checkout line. Earlier this year, however, some local and state governments started pushing back against the cashless concept, claiming it discriminated against those who don’t have bank accounts.
At the new Manhattan location, a greeter welcomes cash-paying customers upon entry. When it’s time to check out, they do so at a counter in the middle of the store where another employee scans your items, handles the transaction and even gives you a paper receipt.
It sounds no different than a standard retail experience and largely defeats the purpose of the Go store as a whole but, it keeps the critics at bay so perhaps that’s all that matters.