Monday, August 28, 2017

Welcome to Jersey City's...



A&P had FOUR "Express Yourself" self-checouts available morning, noon and night. Acme has two express registers and flat out REFUSES to operate either register. There were only two regular registers operating with lines of visibly frustrated shoppers. NO ONE in Customer Service. This is the same exact scene I experienced about a month ago. In fact, there are NEVER any express registers open when I am in this store.

As I've mentioned before, I have shopped regularly at this location since the early 2000's. In all the years that it was a drab former Waldbaums/A&P then beautifully remodeled to an A&P Fresh, never once was it so poorly managed as it consistently by Acme.

Not wanting to put down the two items I had and walk out, as I often do when I encounter these front-end-disasters, I tracked down a long-time employee to ask some questions about the chronic issues at this store. The employee was very nice and offered several times to go up front and ring me up. I wouldn't take her offer as she was busy doing other things and is not normally a cashier. I specifically brought up the self-checktouts and how A&P always had four available and Acme only ever has two to three registers open. She said Acme is exploring the possibility of bringing the self-checkouts back! Corporate has already been to this location to review the situation and the store is waiting to hear what changes will be made. So that's something. I just can't wrap my head around the fact that Acme spent a fortune acquiring A&P and they refuse to spend any money on cashiers.

When I finally got checked out by someone in Customer Service, I asked yet again, why there are never any express registers open here. I was basically told their labor hours were cut so no more cashiers. Well that's gotta be good for business. The employee then said "Everyone shops at ShopRite anyway" to which I said "yeah, 'cause no one can get checked out at Acme".

Just in case you think I overreact a bit to the horrendous customer service I experience at far too many Acmes, let's have a look at some of the yelp reviews for this very location to see how others feel about it...

Vincent B: "Place was packed and only 2 lanes had cashiers. No self checkout anymore. Just awful."

Ariel J: "How do they not have an express check out?! I came in for 1 item and waited on line for a good 15 minutes before my turn was up. Ugh."

Hank C. : "No self-checkout? Guess they want to be slower?"

Willima C. : "At what point do you say it's time to have more cashiers working when lines are as long as Six Flags? I don't think I've ever seen more than 3 lanes open ever at this place. Only come here if you absolutely need to."

Christy W: "...and only two cashiers which create long lines."

Paul K: "There are never carts available, they have very few cashiers working (long lines to check out), and they're crowding the aisles with crap making it hard to maneuver around the store when it's busy"

Liz T: "Prices are fine, produce seems ok, meat is ok, but why on earth would there only be three registers open at 5:30pm on Sunday? Have the owners never been to a grocery store before?"

Arielle B: "Waiting on the check out line for an hour+ is unacceptable and telling a customer "no one wants to worry so uh sorry..." is not appreciated. I will not be back."

Cody S: "Sometimes only ONE check out line is open & there are 6 carts in line before somebody complains & they finally open up something."

Dan P: "The lines are horrific especially for a Sunday only had 3 lines open! I loved the a and p that was here. Looks like I'm back to shop rite which is the lesser of three evils. Never coming back here again!"

Moinca R: "The return of self-checkout lanes would do a lot to change my review to 3 stars." (Up from two stars)

Same here, Monica! It's pretty sad to see Acme completely blowing their comeback, which did not come with a cheap price tag. I keep shopping at their stores simply because I love Acme but I'm sure other shoppers are going elsewhere since the service is so terrible. Earlier in the week I popped in the Weehawken store to buy PowerBall tickets. I was going to grab a few items... until I saw the lines. Five registers were open but that still was not enough to handle the amount of shoppers waiting to check out. To make it worse, the evening manager was standing at Customer Service without a care in the world. I got my ticket and left. Funny thing... as I was walking out, I passed two customers who had entered the store. One looked across the front-end and said to the other "Oh my God, look at the lines". I turned and said "There's always a long line at Acme!"


  1. Complaining to clerks ir department managers never work, they only live with the hours that they are given to run their departments.The person you want to talk to is the Store Manager

    1. I didn't complain to a clerk, I asked some questions and, as expected, she had some answers for me.

  2. Istand corrected, I would still take it up with the Store Manager,he has access to the DM He can pass along these concerns and perhaps get more hours for the store.Perhaps he and his assistant could have come up and bagged. Perhaps call department heads to do the same. To just ignore customers upfront in a long line is unexcusable.

  3. The more hours they cut the bigger the store mgrs bonus
    Thats what it is all about

  4. Question—you say "you keep shopping at their stores simply because I love Acme", but what, specifically, is it about the modern-day Acme that you love? Is it some sense of nostalgia about the place? Seems to me, as so many others, that there is not a whole lot left to love. The past is the past, and no matter how great a store used to be in its heyday, there is a time to move on.

    1. I used to work for Acme so I do love the nostalgia of it all. Plus, I went from having no Acmes in my area to instantly having SIX all conveniently located near to where I live. For the most part, all of them are managed better than they were as A&Ps and Pathmarks, with the exception of the front-ends which is largely due to the removal of the self-checkouts. What Acme won't spend on labor for cashiers, the do spend money on employees who keep the stores clean and well-stocked. All of the produce departments are run significantly better than they were by A&P/Pathmark.

  5. King of Prussia is exactly the same. The express lines are never open and one register open. People lined back into the aisles. And it always seems like they have the worlds slowest cashiers. You definitely wouldn't see a Jewel Osco being run like that, so why does ACME has the worst front end in the country? It's like they want to tick the customers off.

    1. I can confirm this. I stopped shopping at the King of Prussia location in November when they removed the self checkouts.

      I had been a regular customer for over 17 years.

    2. That's crazy. It's like they want Wegmans to purposely slaughter them.

  6. Agree with you completely! Giant always has the 'express lanes' open, but they're ALWAYS packed, or they don't obey the rules. Their newly-installed checkout lights no longer display the LED "20 items or less" on the sign, but rather a written sign that says "EXPRESS" ?!

  7. It's one thing if I am in a store without self checkouts because it never had it, but ever since Acme removed self checkouts from seemingly most of their locations when I lived in Northeast Philadelphia, I rarely shopped there, also doesn't help I moved to Morrisville and have not even looked where the nearest acme is (there is a giant a few blocks away and a good Shoprite in fairless hills, where there was an acme they are building a Rite Aid and going to build a Wawa). Sorry ACME.