|(Source: Nacho Pintos)|
1) Putting your bag in a locker before enteringAt the entrance to most supermarkets there are always a couple dozen cubbie-hole-sized lockers for you to stow your backpack/heavy belongings/shopping bag from another store in. This is nice because you don’t have to lug your crap around with you all over the store, but the lockers are probably there to prevent shoplifting, so make sure to lock up your large bags before shopping or the cashiers and/or security guards at the front will yell at you.
It’s pretty simple: just find an empty locker, open the door, stuff your bag inside, drop a 50-cent, 1-euro, or 2-euro coin piece inside the slot, close and lock the door, and remove the key.
2) Weighing & pricing produce at the stand, not the checkout
|Mercadona in Úbeda|
3) Making change for your total easierLet’s say your groceries cost, say, 15,02€, and you hand your cashier a 20-euro note when it’s time to pay up. I would be willing to bet that 20 euros that they would ask you if you happen to have two cents so they can instead give you ten- and five-euro notes—because otherwise, they’ll have to crack open a roll of pennies and leave you a pile of metal including a 50-cent coin, two 20-cent ones, a 10-, a 5-, and two 2-cent pieces. What a mess. So if you happen to have change with you (and you should, since you’re carrying it around in your pocket-sized coin purse like it’s the manliest thing since the Euro man-purse), everyone involved will have a much better day.
This isn’t restricted to just pennies, though; if your ingredients to make tortilla add up to 6,37€, you can hand over a ten-euro note and a one-euro coin to get a pretty, green five-euro note back with much less spare change.
4) Bagging your own groceries
Bonus: Don’t forget to say bye to your cashier on the way out! An “¡hasta luego!” is just good manners.
Have you ever experienced culture shock in a supermarket—in Spain or elsewhere? Add your story to the comments section below!