Major supermarket axes manned tills at 84 locations in move branded ‘stupid’ as shoppers fear big charge

Major supermarket axes manned tills at 84 locations in move branded ‘stupid’ as shoppers fear big charge

SHOPPERS have blasted a major supermarket after it axed manned tills across more than a dozen locations – with many more to follow.

Asda has gone fully cashless at 14 locations, The Sun can reveal, leaving drivers fearing a £100 charge.

Asda is making a number of its fuel forecourts fully cashless
Asda is making a number of its fuel forecourts fully cashlessCredit: Alamy

They will no longer have the option to pay for fuel at forecourt kiosks and instead will have to “pay at pump”.

This is when you swipe your credit and debit card at the pump before filling up, with no need to go to a till. 

It’s understood that 82 sites will become cashless by the summer.

Forecourts in Orbital Shopping Park in Swindon and Clayton Green, Clayton-le-Woods, Lancashire are among the first locations where manned tills have been axed since Asda started the move in December, 2023.

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Asda petrol stations in Spondon, Derby, and Fleetwood, Lancashire, have also gone cashless.

An Asda spokesperson said: “As more than 90% of all payments on our superstore forecourts are made via card or a contactless device, the colleagues who worked on these sites are moving into the store so they can better serve our customers.”

We’ve asked Asda for the full list of stores affected and will update this story when we have heard back.

Shoppers have blasted the changes at their local forecourts, branding it “stupid” – and fearing charges that can come with pay at pump technology.

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One said: “Shocking treatment of customers, you need at least £100 on your card for the pre-authorisation to be able to get any fuel.

“So if you want £40 of fuel and have less than £100 on your card then your (sic) not getting any fuel from Asda.”

Meanwhile, a third fumed: “But they take extra £100 on your card…”

Pay at pump lets customers pay for fuel with their debit or credit cards at the pumps – but this is done before filling up.

A set amount of money is deducted via what’s known as a pre-authorisation check to stop people driving off without paying.

This ringfences as much as £120 at some petrol stations before the actual charge is applied based on how much you fill the tank with.

But some motorists have complained of a delay that leaves them unable to access the ringfenced cash and temporarily out of pocket.

Asda charges up to £99 for its pre-authorisation check, though this can be lower if you have less in your account, and you’ll never go in your overdraft.

The supermarket first introduced the charge at its forecourts in Hull, East Yorkshire, in February 2022.

It joined Tesco and Sainsbury’s which implemented the change the year before.

Prior to that, the charge was just £1 meaning many never noticed. But in 2021 Visa and Mastercard increased the holding fee to up to £100.

You don’t ever pay more – the money is held temporarily until the exact amount you fill up on is charged.

Usually this is straight away, but some drivers have found it takes longer and the cash shows as unavailable to spend.

Shoppers wanting to avoid having the money marked as unavailable in their account are advised not to use pay at pump by supermarkets.

Instead they should go to tills inside where no pre-authorisation checks are made.

But this will no longer be possible at Asda locations where kiosks are being axed.

It comes as a number of supermarkets increasingly go cashless in a blow for shoppers.

In November, Morrisons said it had plans to convert scores of self-scan tills to card only.

Aldi has also launched its very first checkout-free supermarket in the last few years.

In April 2019, Sainsbury’s launched the UK’s first till-free grocery shop.

And in 2021, Amazon launched a checkout free store and Tesco followed in October.

But not all retailers are jumping on the cashless bandwagon. Booths, known as the Waitrose of the north, said in November it would scrap self-checkouts in most of its stores.

It comes after Asda revealed plans to open 116 former Co-op retail sites, with attached petrol stations by the end of March this year.


And in October 2023, it said it would open a total of 356 new petrol station convenience stores by 2026.

The announcement came after Asda, owned by the billionaire Issa brothers, merged the supermarket chain with its EG Group UK forecourts in April.

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Sam Walker

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