A Lone Dunkin' Donuts Sort Of Abolishes Pennies

One donut shop is taking a stand against the bacteria-ridden zinc disks of suck that are pennies. Reader Tom sent us this photo from a store he recently visited. In a policy change that was probably born during an 8 AM rush, this franchise appears to be are rounding customer totals up or down to the nearest five cents, and only providing pennies to those annoying people who actually want them.

Is the owner of this place a brat, or a visionary?


PREVIOUSLY:
Pennies Are “Bacteria-Ridden Disks Of Suck”
The Treasury Secretary Hates The Penny. Do You?
It Costs $134 Million To Make $80 Million In Pennies
Just Fucking Die Already, U.S. Penny

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  1. Hyppy says:

    The military has been doing this for years at their forward bases. It works great. Many businesses that I frequent, usually independent convenience stores and such, also don’t mind when I tell them just to round it off to a nickel.

    Hopefully this really takes off.

    • Draw2much says:

      Right on! I was in Japan on a USA military base for 4 years and there was no pennies. It was great. I say lay’em to rest.

    • phonic says:

      I’m sure if your total is $9.02 they won’t mind. Try telling them that when it’s $9.03 and see what they say…

  2. nbs2 says:

    My response on this would depend on how much change I was supposed to receive. I’ll take the extra 2 cents, but I won’t leave their register with the extra two cents.

    I am curious to know how their POS system will account for the change differential with running expected till totals.

    • jesirose says:

      That makes no sense. You’ll take it, but not leave with it?

      • ExtraCelestial says:

        They only like it if it works in their favor

        • nbs2 says:

          Exactly. I’d rather they change their prices to reflect their desired rounding (include tax in price of all products) or retain the penny usage.

          That was poor word choice on my part, but since I can’t edit, I’ll just have to admit the error and move on. It might have been better phrased as, “I’ll take the two cents when they round up, but I won’t leave the two cents when they round down.”

          • Southern says:

            It’s pennies. I don’t care. I usually tell them to keep them anyway, even if there’s 4 of them (like my change is $2.04).. I don’t HATE pennies, I just don’t care to have ‘em, and I don’t throw them into a jar or anything (although I do with nickels, dimes & quarters).

            I usually don’t pay for anything with cash anyway (rarely even have any of it on me).. If a place doesn’t take Debit/Visa, they just don’t get my business.

            • Nigerian prince looking for business partner says:

              I feel the same way. Rounding happens all the time in financial transactions.

              If I buy lunch for $5.00, the resulting sales tax (7%) would be $0.385. I really could care less when total bill is rounded up to $5.39.

              When I file my taxes, the IRS doesn’t care about cents and I round all of the individual boxes to the nearest dollar. This can result in taxes on an extra $0.50 of my income. I can live with that.

              • nbs2 says:

                It has less to do with wanting the extra pennies and more to do with my siding with the penny lobby. Doing that would hopefully increase to cost of doing business enough that they would abandon the notion.

                After all, the slippery slope points out that nobody likes to carry coins – they’re heavy and jingly. It suggests that we simply keep rounding things off.

                • Loias supports harsher punishments against corporations says:

                  It appears you’re already missing a few cents. Very common cents.

                  • nbs2 says:

                    As you don’t seem to care about a couple pennies, I would encourage you to take those very same pennies from your income and donate them to this site for each comment you make. After all, it’s just a couple of cents – that they will eventually add up is irrelevant.

                • 99 1/2 Days says:

                  Do you pay for things with pennies often?

                • Kryndar says:

                  Damn, straight! We need to bring back the ha’penny too. Those really add up over time.

            • 99 1/2 Days says:

              I work as a cashier, and I am always rounding up the four cents to a nickel. We have a penny jar by the register to make up the difference when counting out.

          • Loias supports harsher punishments against corporations says:

            You realize that if the country adopted this policy, you wouldn’t be stiffed on the average?

          • Kitamura says:

            That would only work if franchises are allowed to set their own prices for all products since tax amounts would vary area to area.

    • peebozi says:

      It’s mine! You understand! Mine! All mine! Get in there, down! Down! Down! (He is beating Bugs back into the tunnel) Go! GO! Go! Mine! Mine! Mwahahahaha! – Daffy Duck & nbs2

      • lehrdude says:

        Open…Sasparilla…?

      • nbs2 says:

        As much as I enjoy your repetitive comment, I would like to point out that sometimes the best way to get rid of a policy you disagree with is to abuse the crap out of it. Why do you think I abuse affirmative action-type programs so much? Although, I have noticed that Asians get lumped with with whites more often than they get grouped with other minorities.

        • danmac says:

          So you abuse affirmative action programs because you disagree with them? That’s a self-serving justification if I’ve ever heard of one.

          • AlphaLackey says:

            I thought the same thing too — “I’m against prejudice except when it’s in my favor” is the pinnacle of hypocrisy.

    • johnrhoward says:

      Since the sign says you can still ask for them if you want them, I don’t see any issue. Pennies are ridiculous though, we should have eliminated them a long time ago.

    • sonnyjitsu says:

      A wise person once told me that the people who spend their time counting the pennies in their lives are the ones who don’t see real money fly by.

    • SG-Cleve says:

      Maybe POS can be programmed to calculate the change rounded to 5 cents, then the numbers would be exact. Otherwise the manager needs the opposite of OCD and accept that “close” is good enough. I balance my checkbook easier by rounding everything to the nearest $5.

    • jefeloco says:

      I would say that as long as the POS system could account for foreign currency it could handle rounding. Although I never had people paying with Canadian money or pesos, the POS system at an outdoor store that I worked at could handle the conversions just fine and were programmed to. The chains up north and down south had a lot of business from across both borders.

  3. mikeyz says:

    I see know problem with giving $2.05 back when $2.03 is due, but if I am due $2.22 it shouldn’t be the store’s prerogative to only give me $2.20 unless I ask for the pennies. That’s called “stealing”.

    • Coles_Law says:

      I wouldn’t go that far. You already leave the register with whatever fraction of a cent it’s impossible for them to give you.

      • mikeyz says:

        Other than gas, what items have penny-fractional prices?

        I know it’s stupid, but they shouldn’t be able to just not give change that is due, even if it’s only two cents. Rounding everything up would solve their problem, and would cost at most $.04 per transaction, but that’s not the route they took.

    • ExtraCelestial says:

      If you’re a regular customer it eventually evens out. I’m one of those people (if I used cash! HA!) that wouldn’t mind a 2 cent ding if I got an extra 2 cents the next time. It’s like cash register karma

      • ahotw says:

        That assumes the customer orders something different every day instead of getting stuck in the same routine of ordering the same thing every day.

    • Hyppy says:

      “That’s called ‘stealing'” – Well, not really. If the business posts its pricing policies in a conspicuous manner, there’s probably nothing wrong with it. This goes double if the total that they quote you is pre-rounded.

      And, can you please explain to me how it is ‘stealing’ if you never had the pennies to begin with? They’re not exactly rummaging through your pockets here. Although, that could be a nice way to end my bagel meal.

    • Oh4Sh0 says:

      What they’ll likely do, if they’re in business long enough, is make it so that they’re never rounding up. All prices will come out to ~ .01 or .02 extra, then it’s extra profit for them. It’ll be just like the 9/10 of a cent at the gas station.

      • scratchie says:

        Yeah, because that’s exactly what this plan is all about! Goosing their bottom line with precious, precious pennies! Thank goodness there are eagle-eyed consumerists like Oh4Sh0 to see through such nefarious schemes!!!!!!!!eleven

      • theycallmeGinger says:

        This (though, your math is backwards). I don’t mind the policy if it’s fairly distributed, but I’m jaded enough to expect they would set their prices to round up and be in their favor only. An extra 2 cents per DD customer adds up!

        …of course, they could just raise their prices 2 cents and I probably wouldn’t notice. At least they’re being upfront about it. So, go for it, DD!

        • Nigerian prince looking for business partner says:

          If they do design their pricing to maximize rounding for each item on the menu, what happens if I buy a coffee and a donut at the same transaction, or a coffee and two donuts?

          I just don’t see how they could devise a system that will make Dunkin’ Donuts rich off this, even if they hire Richard Pryor to design it.

          • somedaysomehow says:

            This, exactly this.

            Think about it. Say a donut costs 2.98, after tax. So you give them $5, and you get two dollars back instead of $2.02. You lose two cents. The next day you order two donuts – $5.96. This time, you’d get an extra penny back. Three donuts? $8.94, you lose a penny. Four? $11.92, you get two extra pennies.

            In this scenario, you and the store have exactly broken even by the fourth day. They have no way of predicting how much you’re going to buy of each thing, what you’re going to buy… the math it would take to figure out what would eventually be most likely to put the business ahead (even if that’s possible to figure out with any accuracy) I would think would be likely to be way over the head of a DD franchise owner.

            • Geekybiker says:

              Trivial. They have tons of sales data and spread sheets. All they need to do is figure out the most common orders and price accordingly.

              • 99 1/2 Days says:

                That’s just stupid. Every store has different taxes associated with its city and state. So they are going to spend the money for all this because you think they just “have” to screw the customers over somehow.

            • lordargent says:

              You are assuming that people get varying amounts of donuts each day.

              But what if you only eat one donut per day? Then you lose 2 cents every day and will never recoup it.

              That’s $7.30 a year.

              What if you get two donuts per day, but at different times (one in the morning, one as a post lunch snack). Now you are losing 4 cents per day ($14.60 per year).

              If other stores started to do this, you have the potential of being hosed out of some real money.

      • johnrhoward says:

        How exactly does the 9/10 of a cent on a gallon of gas make any extra profit for the gas station? Do you think people actually buy one gallon of gas very often? How much the total sale (and therefore any rounding profit or loss) is depends entirely on the amount of gas purchased. It’s going to be evenly distributed on average.

        The reason for the 9/10 of a cent is not to make them any money, it’s to make you think the gas is slighly cheaper than it is. Like things being priced at 99 cents or 9.99.

      • 99 1/2 Days says:

        It’s not easy to “arrange” prices to come out like that when you have multiple price points plus a percentage of tax. It would hardly be worth the effort. Have you ever worked retail?

    • peebozi says:

      It’s mine! You understand! Mine! All mine! Get in there, down! Down! Down! (He is beating Bugs back into the tunnel) Go! GO! Go! Mine! Mine! Mwahahahaha! – Daffy Duck & mikeyz

    • Griking says:

      It’s not stealing. The sign said that all you’d need to do is ask if you wanted your pennies.

    • Loias supports harsher punishments against corporations says:

      This is the problem with Americans. Blinded by their inate design to be angry at SOMETHING to see actual logic.

      Should the entire country adopt this principle, then you would, on average, come out even. In fact, while individual customers might be 1-2 cents richer/poorer, Dunkun Donuts would average out even. They are not trying to game you out of your hard earned 2-piece.

      • IThinkThereforeIAm says:

        This assumes that the prices are evenly distributed.
        However, since prices aren’t random (If I recall most of the stores love to have .99 or .98 ending prices), the distribution curve might be distorted in some direction.
        Granted, the randomness (?) of the number of items purchased MAY even this out, however I am not sure.
        And before anybody calls me out on it: no, I haven’t done the math on this.

      • pinkbunnyslippers says:

        Well the country *doesn’t* run this way, and the only one “coming out even” in this scenario is DD, not I.

        Just my $0.02. Pun definitely intended.

      • Cleo256 says:

        Indeed. As someone elsewhere pointed out, this already happens. When you add sales tax on something, you wind up with fractions of a cent rounded up or down. On average, you come out even.

        It’s only when you start to take it into the pennies place that people start to notice and complain.

        Frankly, if DD reprogrammed their register to say $2.20 instead of $2.22, or $2.25 instead of $2.23, I think they’d solve half the complaints. Customers wouldn’t even notice. In fact, I fully expect to hear a news article soon about a place that does this and doesn’t tell anyone for 3 months to see if anyone notices.

      • 99 1/2 Days says:

        Is it necessary to bash all Americans? Unless you have proof that all the people from other countries don’t get angry at things.

  4. jesirose says:

    They should round their prices up on the menu and have tax be included, so everything ends in 0 or 5 after tax. Then customers won’t ask for pennies.

    I like the idea, and anyone who insists on getting their 2 pennies… well.

    • humphrmi says:

      Agreed. If they want to stop dealing with pennies, then start pricing accordingly. Saying “your change is $2.22, here’s $2.20″ is just wrong. Even though, if they adjust their prices, it will probably still turn out the same.

      • jesirose says:

        how will it still end up the same?

        • humphrmi says:

          If they adjust their prices to the nearest nickle, instead of losing $0.02 on a $2.22 change, they’ll probably just adjust their prices up so the two cents ends up in the price.

      • jesirose says:

        BTW I didn’t mean I like the people who insist on getting two pennies. I think this idea is fine.

    • Dave Malik says:

      Exactly!

      If any place I go to raised their prices 2-4cents I can’t imagine it would bother me, oh wait in fact it would not! lol

      I never pay cash, but a large reason I don’t is because I hate change and the worst kind of change is pennies!

    • barty says:

      Bingo. I don’t know why we still list prices at the retail level in this country exclusive of sales taxes. Probably because it would make those cities/counties with sky high sales taxes stick out like a sore thumb when people start asking “why does everything cost so much here, compared to the next town over?” and our politicians don’t want to have to deal with angry business owners as to why sales taxes are too high.

      On the other hand, over a long enough scale, the pennies you’d lose in rounding would probably balance out with those you’d gain with rounding over a period of time.

    • Splendid says:

      that is a good idea in theory but it might not prove to be practical. in some areas (cities counties or states) there are somewhat complex rules about sales tax and food. if it is to be eaten on the spot or to go, if it is hot or cold, prepared or packaged.

      to structure the prices to include sales tax could mean that there would be different prices for the same item depending on the item of whether you are going to eat it inside the store.

  5. longdvsn says:

    This is very commonplace in many parts of Europe. I usually try to collect coins from places I visit, and I’ve found that you have to go to grocery stores in many European countries to actually get 1 and 2 cent euro coins.

    Anyway, I support it. In the end, it’ll balance out (approximately) for the customer and the business.

    • maruawe says:

      I don’t believe that it will help customers in the long run, businesses will always find a way to increase income (bottom line) and it will only cost customers more. In speaking with an expert in money transactions, she showed where it will increase their bottom line as much as 1 billion a year per business

  6. Gravitational Eddy says:

    at the end of the fiscal year, how does the owner of the franchise account for the missing money?
    If his creative accounting methods aren’t brought into question, then the Feds will ask the really hard questions.
    Questions like “where is that missing $165.14 you reported, but did not deposit into the account?”
    when dealing with the Feds and their money, you do not make excuses.

    • jesirose says:

      What? He wouldn’t reporting any more than he got. If one day they end up handing out a lot more pennies, then at the end of the day their sales are a few dollars down. So that’s what goes in the books…. You don’t report what the register says you sold, you report what you put in the bank.

      • RandomHookup says:

        You probably do use the register amount to record sales tax collected, but you make an adjustment everyday to account for any shortfall/overage to revenues.

    • TooManyHobbies says:

      What missing money? Do you think that there’s a statistical leaning that would mean that they’re giving more pennies on rounding than taking? 0,1,2 round down to 0, 3,4,5 round up to 5.

      Assuming a regular statistical scattering (random bottom lines), the rounding should average out.

      How do they account for missing fractional pennies when calculating taxes now? That’s right, they round them up to pennies. Same thing.

      • DH405 says:

        In many shops like that, there are one or two items that a large number of people come in for every day. Maybe at DD, it’s a coffee and a donut or something like that. If half of your customers are getting Item A, and Item A is $3.22 after tax, there’s a statistical lean toward loss.

    • DanRydell says:

      Major lulz on this one. Seriously, do you think the “feds” ask “hard questions” when a cashier’s drawer does not have EXACTLY the amount of money it should have in it? That’s essentially what’s happening here.

      I used to work at a convenience store. When you do hundreds of cash transactions in a shift, the drawer count is never exactly right. Even if you make absolutely no mistakes, there’s always the possibility that a roll of coins you opened into the drawer did not contain exactly the amount it was supposed to contain.

      Being off by an insignificant amount of money is really no big deal.

  7. Hirayuki says:

    A lot of places already do this (Swedish rounding) on a nationwide basis. In fact, it’s the law in New Zealand.

  8. Murph1908 says:

    If I see a penny on the ground, I don’t even bother bending down to pick it up.

    This should be implemented everywhere.

    • ovalseven says:

      I only pick them up from water fountains. They’re much cleaner, plus the volume I can collect makes it more worth my time.

    • macoan says:

      … If this was implemented everywhere… there would be a lot of pennies on the ground since no one would ever pick them up. :-)

  9. balthisar says:

    AAFES (military PXs) have been (or had been) doing this for years. It was great.

    • buttcat says:

      To clarify, AAFES has been doing it for years overseas because pennies are not worth the cost to mail back and forth from the US. If you use a credit card or pay by check, you will pay the exact amount. It only applies when paying with cash.

      When I was stationed in Germany back in the late 90s, the AAFES gas station attendant would get so mad when you filled up your car plus $.02. However, he would happily take your $.02 if your total was $.03 over the rounded number. So it works both ways.

      • balthisar says:

        Not just overseas; it was like that at Ft. Hood as well. But yes, when paying by check (no credit cards back then!), it was always the exact amount.

  10. VinceV222 says:

    I was thinking about this the other day … getting rid of pennies. What about pumping gas? Would the total have to go up in 5-cent increments?

    • ahecht says:

      Gas is already priced in tenths of cents (i.e. $2.799), and the pump simply rounds to the nearest cent. Why is rounding to the nearest nickel any worse?

      However, the answer to your question is no. In other countries that have gotted rid of penny-equivalents, single cents are used for credit/debit card transactions, but rounding is done for cash. Therefore the pump would still read $32.43 and that is what you would be charged if you pay at the pump, but if you pay cash you would owe $32.45.

  11. deezil says:

    I would almost guarantee that their menu prices are as such that after tax, the store stands to make the 2-3 cents per transaction.

    • Oh4Sh0 says:

      ah, you beat me to it.

    • Nigerian prince looking for business partner says:

      How would that work exactly? Wouldn’t the system fall apart if you bought a different combination or quantity of products?

      • jesirose says:

        exactly. This isn’t a conspiracy, it’s a way to speed things up.

        My cafeteria at work doesn’t do this officially, but since it’s all the same people day after day, the cashiers are really lax about pennies or even nickels. I bought something for $1.07 after tax and she took my dollar and told me not to worry about the change. In return, when I would be getting a handful of change back from her, I hand half back. (I usually pay with credit but I see this happen a lot with other employees too)

        • Murph1908 says:

          A deli near where I used to work did something similar. They always rounded my change back to the nickel, dime, or even quarter sometimes.

          I’d drop nickels and dimes into the ‘give a penny’ tray on occasion to even things out.

    • DanRydell says:

      SO MUCH FAIL

  12. TheWacoKid says:

    Easier. quicker, better policy for those who want their $0.02: “We have put a bowl of pennies on the counter. If you would like your extra pennies after we have rounded down, please feel free to take them from the bowl.:

  13. savashley says:

    So I guess everyone should start using credit cards so the store has to pay those annoying merchant fees instead of giving out a few pennies?

  14. pecan 3.14159265 says:

    If they round, they need to decide whether to round everyone up or everyone down – the way they’re doing it now is unfair. If you get the same thing every time you go, and you’re constantly getting 2 cents shaved off your change, it eventually adds up. It would only take 50 days to lose an entire dollar.

    • Murph1908 says:

      True. But if you are going to Dunkin’ Donuts every day, I hope you aren’t concerend about 60 cents a month. If your disposable income is that tight, you probably wouldn’t be going there so often.

      • peebozi says:

        yes but, like a number of posters said above “It’s mine! You understand! Mine! All mine! Get in there, down! Down! Down! (He is beating Bugs back into the tunnel) Go! GO! Go! Mine! Mine! Mwahahahaha! “

      • lettucefactory says:

        I have my daily Dunkies run budgeted to the penny! NO DEVIATIONS!

        Actually, I imagine most change change folks get there ends up in the tip jar anyway. If this is good or bad for the employees, I’m not sure.

      • pecan 3.14159265 says:

        That’s not the point, though. It’s not that I can’t afford to lose that $4 (based on 200 days out of the year of visits) throughout the year to feed my donut habit. It’s that it’s entirely unnecessary for me to lose that $4 because it’s MY $4. It’s the principle of the matter. I recently noticed that my bagel shop has started to round up, even if it can technically just round down. Maybe it’s been doing it for years, but I rarely pay with cash, so I only noticed the other day.

        • Loias supports harsher punishments against corporations says:

          If everyone did this, you’d come out even. And really? $4/year gets you angry?

    • jariten says:

      Meh,

      Assuming you went every day on the way to work, and ordered the exact same thing that shaved off two cents of change, it would take nearly 3 months to lose a dollar. Not a big deal.

    • Loias supports harsher punishments against corporations says:

      True, some customers get stiffed, others geta boon. But the company comes out even. The company is not gaining from this policy except by easing transactions which frees up time for cashiers.

      Plus if you’re the stiffed one, you can claim your pennies,

    • maruawe says:

      multiply this by every purchase you make,comes out a lot more than a dollar.

  15. utahgamer says:

    The cost of handling pennies and nickels plus credit card fees from people who hate change…
    I bet retailers could make quite a profit rounding in the customers favor.
    Heck, you might even come out ahead rounding prices down to the nearest dollar!
    Giving up an average of 5 (or even 50) cents to save all that work and fees has got to be worth it.

  16. mandarax says:

    I love this… I wish more places would do it. It all evens out in the end. if people are that worried about their 2 cents, I also support the “take a penny leave a penny” trays.

  17. Destra says:

    I’d accept the rounding if it was in my favor, otherwise, I’d be one of the annoying ones asking for my pennies. I keep track of all my money, down to the last cent. It adds up.

    • There's room to move as a fry cook says:

      You are the Leeroy Jenkins of consumers – messing up the management’s well laid plans and causing chaos in flow of the line.

    • Southern says:

      I wouldn’t. I’m one of those that if a cashier rounds up and gives me back $2.05 instead of $2.03, I’ll go out to my car and bring in the 2¢ and give it to them, even if I have to just leave it on the counter.

    • DanRydell says:

      You’re right, pennies add up. If you get a hundred of them, you have a dollar. Assuming you average 2 pennies in change from each transaction, it takes you 50 transactions to collect enough pennies for 1 dollar. That’s quite a windfall you have there.

  18. There's room to move as a fry cook says:

    What costs $2.97 at Dunkin Donuts that would net you $2.03 on change for a five?

    Just round all prices so prices+ tax ends in a nickel or dime.

    • DanRydell says:

      3 $.99 items that aren’t taxed would cost $2.97. In some states food is not taxed.

      Pricing everything so the total is already rounded doesn’t work, because tax is computed and rounded at the end of the transaction. Tax may round one way with a single item, but the other way with 5 of that item.

      Besides, rounding at the end of the transaction is better than rounding all of the prices then adding them up (which is essentially what you’re doing if you price everything at an even multiple of 5). When you round at the end of the transaction you pay at most 2 cents more or less than you would have without rounding. If you price everything at even multiples of 5 then you’re paying at most 2 cents * number of items more than you otherwise would have.

      If I buy 6 $.99 items and round at the end, I’ll pay $5.95 – 1 cent more than I would have without rounding. If they change the price of the item to $1.00, I’d pay $6 – 6 cents more than I would have without rounding.

      Also, only cash transactions need to be rounded. Electronic transactions don’t need to be.

      Man, this is too easy.

  19. MrEvil says:

    Correction: copper-clad zinc disks of suck :p

  20. kmw2 says:

    I don’t really see how this would make making change any faster. Now the cashier will have to stop to figure out rounding instead of taking a fraction of a second to grab two pennies.

    • mszabo says:

      Well I think it depends on what the time sink is. I worked as a cashier for a while and I’d guess the #of coins handled is a bigger time sink than the simple math. Not to mention the once per hour delay while the cashier has to go get a new roll of pennies from the vault, or counting out all the pennies at the end of the night to see if they add up.

      • NinjaPanda says:

        At the restaraunt I worked at we didn’t even bother counting the pennies at the end of the night. There was generally a good 30 cents or so in there, but it wasn’t enough for anyone to care that much about.

    • jesirose says:

      cause rounding the numbers 1-9 to a 0, 5 or 10 is HARD. Math. It’s like, almost trig and whatnot.

      • tehcanuckian says:

        need we remind you of the verizon math incident? math isn’t hard, but think of the average dunkin’ donuts cashier.

      • theduckay says:

        when you have to think about it in a split second while there are a million people in line and customers and employees yelling back and forth at eachother over you (my dunkin donuts is absolute chaos), then yea…I can imagine its not the easiest thing to do, as opposed to just handing out exactly what the register is telling you. Some of us have harder time with numbers and math-related things.

  21. nonsane says:

    So them not giving you pennies as change is stealing, but changing the price is okay?
    just accept the price is more. Is 3 cents difference going to make or break a purchase for you?

  22. Jfielder says:

    I’m not for getting rid of the penny, but I am all for making the penny cheaper to produce. What’s wrong with the steel pennies that were made during 1943-44? Or make them out of anything really…. aluminum, zinc, lead…. Ok maybe not lead, but you get the point.

    • SabreDC says:

      I agree. Or, just make them smaller. If it costs so much to make a penny, why not make it like a dime and use less raw materials? Granted, I’m not a metallurgist, but I’d assume that using less of something is cheaper. It doesn’t eliminate the overhead of the manufacturing process which is built into the $1.04-$1.07 cost to make a penny, but it’s still a key component.

      Does anyone know how much it costs to make copper/steel penny in the UK?

  23. AstroWorn2010 says:

    That would make me want to pay in rolls of pennies every time I went there.

  24. DanRydell says:

    Abolish the penny debates always bring out the idiotic arguments (almost always in favor of keeping the penny).

    No, they’re not going to change their prices so they always round up. Suppose they price something so it comes out to $.98. That rounds up. What if you buy 2? That rounds down. It’s IMPOSSIBLE to price everything so that a person buying multiple items will always have the total round up.

    • David Ciani says:

      Uhhh… yes it is. If all of their prices are in multiples of $0.05 and include the sales tax, they would never need to round, and never would need to give pennies as change.

  25. There's room to move as a fry cook says:

    I keep getting stuck behind ladies with deep purses determined to rummage and pay with exact change.

    • BuyerOfGoods3 says:

      and we love to irritate you by having correct change, too. Or making you wait, to find out we DIDN’T have that dime we thought we did.

      Muwhahahaa………

  26. Aennan says:

    Money is money. I will happily pay their price, but I expect my change. No favors – just a transaction.

    If they don’t want to deal with pennies, they need to change their pricing (like my local Dunkin Donuts did). So much easier and faster.

    Plus, no matter how many signs they put up, you know there are people that won’t read them, then get ticked off, creating additional time while the poor cashier has to explain the store’s policy.

  27. Qolotlh says:

    So you only get correct change if you ask for it? Corporate won’t allow that for long.

  28. BuyerOfGoods3 says:

    1. This is not about money. Your Cashiers are Lazy.

    2. I still want my exact change. I don’t care if you’d like to speed up your process by not having to count change (no matter what the sign states).

    3. Keep your plastic and fees.

  29. TooManyHobbies says:

    ‘Bout time. We should have done this as a country 20 years ago.

    At this point I’d just as soon get rid of nickels too. What I’d like to see is dimes and a small 50 cent piece as the only sub-dollar coin. Max change from any transaction would be 5 coins.

    ‘Course, I like dollar coins too, and think we really should have a 2 and/or 5 dollar coin.

  30. TriplerSDMB says:

    I bet enough people will avoid paying more than they’re charged by using a credit/debit card instead so the fees the franchisee pays will eat up the extra cents they keep back from customers and then some. Hopefully.
    Or that State’s AG will step in and slap them around.

  31. milty456 says:

    As a coin collector, this angers me. I love change. Also, they may be annoying, but if you go buy a coin price guide, many of those .01 cent pennies you get are actually worth more…especially older ones(which are quite common to find). So next time you think something is only worth .01 cent, look it up in a price guide, and you’ll find that you could probably take a handful of them to a coin shop and get some real cash for them.

  32. johnrhoward says:

    It’s really sad to see that people are so bad at basic math that they think this is somehow going to make money for Dunkin Donuts or that you can simply change your prices to always make the total come out without pennies.

  33. Darren W. says:

    Why not just change the prices of everything so that after tax, it ends up at an interval of 5 cents? Or be really helpful and change it so everything ends up at an interval of 25 cents.

  34. PlumeNoir - Thank you? No problem! says:

    You know…like Superman III…

  35. Watcher95 says:

    THIS WORKS.

    Overseas US military installations did away with pennies decades ago and I LOVED it.

  36. ElizabethD says:

    I like pennies (I’m a dinosaur that way), but having DD round up or down the change you get would be awesome.

  37. Jonesey says:

    To quote the men of Guinness: Brilliant!!!

    Seriously. The US is WAY behind in this. Go to Europe and try to buy something that isn’t priced in a multiple of 5.

    Go ahead. I’ll wait.

  38. The cake is a lie! says:

    It isn’t really much of a plan for elimination if there will still be pennies in the register…

    Seriously though… Why eliminate them at all? How many people still use cash anyway? For those that do, I just don’t see the big deal. Get cashiers who know how to count back change and all will be right with the world.

    Or do what was said earlier and fix your prices to wind up being even with tax and that works even better. The accounting for that store is going to be a bitch and a half i’ll bet.

  39. mrmcd says:

    I’ve noticed a recent uptick in delis and takeout places in NYC doing this. They always round down, or in favor of the customer. So if it’s XX.22, I’ll get change back against a total of XX.20 (80 cents in coins instead of 78).

  40. maruawe says:

    For any of you that don’t want the pennies send them to me or donate to a worthy cause.give reply and I’ll send you a PO box to send them too. most people don’t have any idea how much rounding cost most stores will charge you more, not less.

  41. kataisa says:

    Pennies may be annoying to some, but people need to understand that companies that want to get rid of pennies and round things off the nearest nickel is nothing more than robbery. You may not miss the three cents but over several hundred customers the money adds up and DD pockets free money.

    Those “tip jars” are far more annoying and are just another way for businesses to get more free money for nothing. They may also use it as an excuse not to pay their workers a decent wage.

  42. Lomic says:

    Bacteria-ridden? Unlikely. Pennies are copper plated and copper does not support the growth of bacteria.

  43. Extended-Warranty says:

    I can’t wait until some people start pre-calculating their order so it works out that it ends in .3 for the “extra profit”.

    I’ll never understand why people pay with cash. The responsible use of a credit card is the best method of payment, period.

    • FrugalFreak says:

      Nope, with cash I support no industry, with using credit, I’m supporting the credit industry I loathe.

    • kataisa says:

      I’ll never understand why people pay with cash. The responsible use of a credit card is the best method of payment, period.

      Because paying with cash is how consumers can maintain control over their finances whereas using credit cards gives Big Banks all the power.

      Big Banks would love to do away with cash. It’s been proven that people are more likely to spend money they don’t have if they don’t have cash in their pockets and instead use credit or debit cards.

  44. Andyf says:

    my only problem with this plan is that I’m not sure how much I trust the minimum wage coffee slaves to round properly every time, and quite frankly, it seems like there’s room to take advantage of both the rounding and the under caffeinated customers to make $0.05 at a time shorting customers.

    Other than that, I think it would be a good plan, I think the penny, and the dollar bill, are past due for discontinuation. They both cost more than they are worth. (and people can suck it up and deal with dollar coins, they aren’t that inconvenient!)

  45. menty666 says:

    Is counting pennies really that hard?

  46. FrugalFreak says:

    I want my pennies! For those that run into problems, accept the item then pay, since it is legal for all debts, once you have item in your possession, it is a debt.

  47. FrugalFreak says:

    I resent the way the poll is worded
    1 yes please, I can use a nickel for my lottery ticket
    2. no, money is money.

  48. nacoran says:

    One of my favorite restaurants used to charge even dollar amounts on all purchases and include the tax in the list price. It made ordering lunch for the office so much easier.

  49. Geekybiker says:

    I’d be fine with this if they always rounded in the consumer’s favor. No rounding in my favor = no sale.

  50. FredKlein says:

    Arrgh. You can’t get rid of the penny- it’s the basic unit for coins. What’s a nickel? 5 cents. What’s a dime? 10 cents. If you get rid of the cent, then what is a nickel 5 of? What is a dime 10 of?

  51. Kingeryck says:

    This would just be another way for companies to screw us. They’d round everything UP I’m sure. A penny on every transaction adds up quick.

  52. Jay911 says:

    I just came back from Australia and they don’t have any denomination under 5c. Prices are just engineered to come out to round numbers.

  53. ablestmage says:

    If it’s really that insignificant, why don’t they just round DOWN the actual total each time? They would lose $40 every one thousand transactions, at worst.

  54. lordargent says:

    I dump my change into a tray, when the tray is full, I dump it into a sack, when the sack is full, it’s off to coinstar for an amazon card.

    The last time I went, out of $400, about $25 of it was pennies (about $300 was quarters, I think it is because I will always get at least one quarter and at least one penny in change from lunch, but am not always guaranteed to get a nickle or dime). I will keep them, thanks.

    /IE, sure, round down all you want, but I will always want all of my change :P

  55. Droford says:

    If you start rounding up to the nearest nickel, then the nickel will end up being hated and then people will start rounding to the nearest dime, then the nearest quarter..pretty soon it’ll be rounding to the nearest dollar so we can do away with change permanently.

  56. Dinhilion says:

    I offer to do this for customers at the grocery store I work at

  57. Jane_Gage says:

    Thanks to the Consumerist, I know I can wrap the pennies with tape and use trick or treaters as walking garbage bags.

  58. John B says:

    Visionary.

    Standard practice in New Zealand

  59. 99 1/2 Days says:

    The only use of pennies is for cashiers to make change. If we for some reason still have half pennies, it would be the same deal. So I don’t see the problem with rounding.

  60. DPH says:

    The penny is a very useful reminder of what our rulers have done to our money. We couldn’t keep a gold standard after 1933. We couldn’t keep a silver standard after 1964. We couldn’t keep a copper standard after 1982. Now, it appears we can’t even maintain a zinc standard.

    Maybe the mint could just stamp a couple of extra zeros on the 2011 penny, replace Lincoln with Robert Mugabe and call it a new presidential dollar.