My kids are fanatic about saving and counting coins, so I knew this was a perfect family activity. In our old neighborhood we used to bring our coins to a TD Bank, which also has a feature for the kids to guess the amount before it gets counted, but where we live now the closest bank is a 10 to 15 minute drive away, so it's less convenient, and we haven't gone in awhile.
Not only was the Stop & Shop Coinstar closer than the bank, but being able to combine a coin counting trip with a grocery store shop would be much more convenient. So I had my kids scurry and find the various coin piles around the house and we put everything they found in a Ziploc bag.
|Coins ready and waiting to be counted at Coinstar!|
|I keep these old-style pennies. I have no idea why.|
|State quarter map.|
One in the car I remembered there was a pile of change in the console as well, but decided to leave it there as my son enjoys choosing a few coins each morning of preschool to contribute to the tzedakah box and I didn't want to do anything that would discourage the joy he has in his charitable ways.
As I entered the Stop & Shop, which is a huge store, my first thought was "I will never find the Coinstar kiosk", so I was very happy to find it immediately, right inside the main entrance.
|The non-elusive Coinstar kiosk.|
While it would have been convenient to convert my coin windfall into a Stop & Shop card I would have used immediately inside the store, I was perfectly happy to have almost $20 to spend next time I'm at the Gap or Old Navy. Which is pretty much as often as I'm at the grocery.
Overall, the Coinstar experience was a positive one. It was a convenient location, there was no fee as long as I chose the gift card option instead of cash, and when I was there, there was no line.
I spoke to someone in Customer Service at Stop & Shop, who said Cointar would be offering Stop & Shop gift cards soon, and when they do, I'm sure I'll be exchanging some of my coins for those as well.
Until then, I'll be enjoying spending our loose change on new clothes.
To learn more about Coinstar, visit the Coinstar website, Coinstar Facebook page, or follow Coinstar Twitter.
To learn more about Stop & Shop, visit the Stop & Shop website and the Stop & Shop Facebook page.
To see more photos from my Coinstar experience, check out my story on Google+.
Disclosure: I have been paid (at Coinstar's request) to try and blog about Coinstar's products/services as part of a Collective Bias shopper insights study. All opinions are my own.
To follow the conversation on Twitter look for the hashtags #NoFeeCoinstar and #CBias.
Are there any coins you always keep? Please share!