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Costco's Food Court Now Has Self-Serve Ordering Kiosks

Costco's Food Court Now Has Self-Serve Ordering Kiosks

By Thomas Kenzaki

Costco samples are great but they only serve as an appetizer at best. If you’re looking to satisfy your hunger at Costco, you need to head to their popular food court. Costco has just made your visit to their food court a lot more convenient by adding in brand new self-serve ordering kiosks.

Yes, no longer will you have to wait in a line that’s often 10+ people deep to indulge in their classic hot dog combo, soft serve, pizza, or any one of their other delicious menu items.

Just walk up to one of their easy to use self-serve checkout machines, order and pay using the touchscreen display, then head on over to the dedicated self-serve pickup area at the counter to get your food.

The self-serve checkouts only accept credit cards, Interac, and Costco cash cards as payment. If you want to use cash you’ll need to line up at the counter instead.

As someone who often wants to get something, but usually passes due to the long lines, I really love that I can quickly get a snack (or an entire meal) from the food court with a minimal wait.

Have you tried the new self-serve checkouts at the Costco food court? Let us know what you think in the comments below.

39 Comments

    • I used one yesterday and no other customers in line seem to know about it due to the bad signage (looks like staff area computers)

      I got looks when I stepped up to grab my food ahead of everyone within like 2 min of paying at the kiosk

      Once it catches on I’m not sure if you will save that much time as staff will still need to prep all the incoming orders
    • Report Post
    • The woman who is normally at the cash at my Costco introduced me to it as I was waiting on my sandwich the old way.
      She showed me how it's done but I kept telling her I had to get my sandwich first like the old way.
      She took a break from her phone to tell me that you order first, then collect at the end.
      Definitely faster as I was surprised no lines.
      This was early in the morning when they just opened and the usual crowds hadn't all arrived yet.
      I normally would use the cashier at most establishments that have automated, to keep cashiers in there jobs.
      In this case the cashier was no longer cashing but was the one assisting people at the self service kiosks.
      Plus off course Costco members and some of their staff are extra obnoxious so welcome the opportunity not to interact with them in this case.
    • Report Post
    • noticed this in Guelph as well! there was a line up for a cashier so I went up to the kiosk and got my food in no time. wondering how long it'll take before the line will start for the kiosk.

      aside- I couldn't get my ice cream in a cup from the kiosk... but maybe I didn't look hard enough.
    • Report Post
    • Elgin Mills location has had these kiosks for like 6 weeks now.
    • Report Post
    • It's been a few months now but not many people know about this. They also have a separate counter for these orders.
    • Report Post
    • Yep noticed them last time I was there and used one; much better than the line--agreed. This is probably the first thing I've seen Costco do to make lines better.
    • Report Post
    • When I heard they were coming I just assumed you would be forced to provide your membership to use them - I was shocked you do not. It's not like it would have been difficult to build into their interface so it seems like an actual decision they made. They provide a good number of machines at my Costco so I cannot see them being too busy and hopefully people migrate away from the cashier.

      There was also someone posting self-service checkouts being tested in a store in BC. That will be interesting to see in action.
    • Report Post
    • TrevorK wrote:
      Aug 17th, 2019 2:56 pm
      When I heard they were coming I just assumed you would be forced to provide your membership to use them - I was shocked you do not. It's not like it would have been difficult to build into their interface so it seems like an actual decision they made. They provide a good number of machines at my Costco so I cannot see them being too busy and hopefully people migrate away from the cashier.

      There was also someone posting self-service checkouts being tested in a store in BC. That will be interesting to see in action.
      There are self-service checkouts in Mississauga East for a while now.
    • Report Post
    • readysetgo wrote:
      Aug 17th, 2019 11:49 am
      wondering how long it'll take before the line will start for the kiosk.
      Based on the speed and the number of kiosks I don't think there'll ever be a line.
      There's only a line because there's only one or maybe 3 cashiers with slow indecisive people.
      With a kiosk, as long as you don't have 6 or 8 idiots it should process pretty quickly.

      The back log will definitely be the kitchen.
    • Report Post
    • I noticed them a few months ago. Think they started in the US first since I saw them there months before I saw them here. Definitely helps the ordering process but the biggest problem is there is still never any open spot at the tables resulting in eating at your car, eating while shopping, or just take it home to eat... 😂
    • Report Post
    • TrevorK wrote:
      Aug 17th, 2019 2:56 pm


      There was also someone posting self-service checkouts being tested in a store in BC. That will be interesting to see in action.
      Both stores here in London had self checkouts like 10 years or more ago and they took them out. I think the newer of the 2 stores might have them back again. The other store is being replaced within the next year or less, so they might wait until the new store is done.
    • Report Post
    • Tested in Newmarket. Disaster to say the least. The line up for paying at the register was huge. The line up for picking up kiosk orders was huge. Average wait time was at least 10 minutes for food. The delay was likely in the kitchen.
    • Report Post
    • Noticed them and used them in Brampton a few weeks back - it was great placing the order that way and bypassing the lineup of 20+ people waiting to order the old way!
    • Report Post
    • These things are great, paid at the kiosk, bypassed a whole line of people. But not very many people were using them.
    • Report Post
    • jackrabbit000 wrote:
      Aug 19th, 2019 8:25 am
      These things are great, paid at the kiosk, bypassed a whole line of people. But not very many people were using them.
      Didn't see it until I was first in line. The line moved fast. I could have sworn that I was served before the kiosk people.
    • Report Post
    • Love using self serve machines to order from any fast food; the menu items and price are presented much clearer IMO.
      On the physical board (not at costco), often times the better value items are written in a small corner and it's hard to see.
    • Report Post
    • Paigne wrote:
      Aug 17th, 2019 8:47 pm
      I noticed them a few months ago. Think they started in the US first since I saw them there months before I saw them here. Definitely helps the ordering process but the biggest problem is there is still never any open spot at the tables resulting in eating at your car, eating while shopping, or just take it home to eat... 😂
      ^^This^^
      Here in Kingston Ontario, the closest Costco's are Ottawa and Peterborough, both being almost an hour and a half away. That means many people turn going to Costco into a day trip/family outing. That's fine, except that they hang around for a bloody hour in the food seating area. Drives me nuts.
    • Report Post
    • They've had these here for at least 6-8 months now. They work very well because more workers can do food prep instead of wasting time collecting money.
    • Report Post
    • WorldIRC wrote:
      Aug 17th, 2019 10:21 pm
      Tested in Newmarket. Disaster to say the least. The line up for paying at the register was huge. The line up for picking up kiosk orders was huge. Average wait time was at least 10 minutes for food. The delay was likely in the kitchen.
      Newmarket Costco customers will get over the learning curve soon. This happens at every other location when they introduce the kiosks.

      Give it a couple months and most customers will pay via kiosk and the cash line will be tiny.
    • Report Post
    • Spinner wrote:
      Aug 19th, 2019 5:27 pm
      Newmarket Costco customers will get over the learning curve soon. This happens at every other location when they introduce the kiosks.

      Give it a couple months and most customers will pay via kiosk and the cash line will be tiny.
      That doesn't address the huge kiosk pickup line though.
    • Report Post
    • WorldIRC wrote:
      Aug 19th, 2019 5:48 pm
      That doesn't address the huge kiosk pickup line though.
      At least with called numbers vs waiting in order means that people with hot dogs should get served faster so there'll be less of a crowd waiting on slower stuff.

      But now tables will be filled up faster.
    • Report Post
    • WorldIRC wrote:
      Aug 19th, 2019 5:48 pm
      That doesn't address the huge kiosk pickup line though.
      The kiosk and cash pickup lines should eventually consolidate. It doesn't make sense to have two pickup lines when every other fast food restaurant system uses one pickup number system regardless of payment.
    • Report Post
    • MrFrugal1 wrote:
      Aug 19th, 2019 5:15 pm
      ^^This^^
      Here in Kingston Ontario, the closest Costco's are Ottawa and Peterborough, both being almost an hour and a half away. That means many people turn going to Costco into a day trip/family outing. That's fine, except that they hang around for a bloody hour in the food seating area. Drives me nuts.
      Situation should get better once the Belleville store is built.
    • Report Post
    • The Burnaby (GVRD), Willingdon location has had it for around a year now. Since there are less items/sub-menus than McD's, it's easier for people to use. Still won't accept Visa, though.
    • Report Post
    • rabbit wrote:
      Aug 20th, 2019 2:20 am
      Since there are less items/sub-menus than McD's, it's easier for people to use.
      I wish McDonald's UI was as fast as Costco.
      I like instantly responsive stuff. McDonalds actually has animated transitions for some stupid reason.
    • Report Post
    • gh05t wrote:
      Aug 17th, 2019 11:30 am
      I normally would use the cashier at most establishments that have automated, to keep cashiers in there jobs.
      Do you not have a vehicle? Of course automation has taken over most factory line jobs so might as well boycott everything? Do you take the stairs instead of elevators now that they don't employ lift operators? What about all those switchboard operators when new phones were developed? Automation has made our lives better in every way. Our farms could not feed the country for the prices they do without technology and equipment. Manpower is highly overrated, brainpower is the future of employment. Maybe these cashiers can become proofreaders and help the new generations learn the difference between 'there' and 'their' while they're at it 😉
      gh05t wrote:
      Aug 17th, 2019 11:30 am
      Plus off course Costco members and some of their staff are extra obnoxious so welcome the opportunity not to interact with them in this case.
      Another reason why automation is better. When was the last time an automated checkout machine gave you sass?

      The one thing I'll say is that in cases where you order and then wait for that order (like in the case of Costco food or McDonalds or Tims), it's most likely beneficial for the store operators to transfer the former cashier employees to help the staff in the back. I've found that because the automated machines are more efficient, orders build up quicker. Having the same amount of staff preparing the larger amount of orders just swamps them.

      When you transfer the positions rather than cut them, you keep jobs for employees, it's more efficient for consumers, and there's slightly more profit for operators. The problem is a lot of operators will simply cut the cashier jobs and maintain the same amount of positions preparing the orders which results in jobs lost, longer wait times, and way more profits. These operators often want to quickly offset the cost of the machines they're forced to buy (in the case of franchisees) so I don't blame them but if they have longterm vision, they'll transfer the positions.
    • Report Post
    • Can't wait to try it out in Montreal
    • Report Post
    • djdestroyer wrote:
      Aug 20th, 2019 2:46 pm
      When was the last time an automated checkout machine gave you sass?
      "Please place the item in the bagging area"
      "Please remove the item from the bagging area"
      "Please wait for attendant"
    • Report Post
    • death_hawk wrote:
      Aug 20th, 2019 3:23 pm
      "Please place the item in the bagging area"
      "Please remove the item from the bagging area"
      "Please wait for attendant"
      At least it said please... I wouldn't call that sass.
    • Report Post
    • rabbit wrote:
      Aug 20th, 2019 2:20 am
      The Burnaby (GVRD), Willingdon location has had it for around a year now. Since there are less items/sub-menus than McD's, it's easier for people to use. Still won't accept Visa, though.
      The self serve kiosk takes Costco Gift Cards. I bought one just to use for food because I don't want to see a credit card charge for $1.50+tax.
    • Report Post
    • gr8dlr wrote:
      Aug 20th, 2019 5:10 pm
      The self serve kiosk takes Costco Gift Cards. I bought one just to use for food because I don't want to see a credit card charge for $1.50+tax.
      ...but you’re forfeiting the extended warranty of your hot dog.
    • Report Post
    • GrumpyOne1 wrote:
      Aug 20th, 2019 5:49 pm
      ...but you’re forfeiting the extended warranty of your hot dog.
      As long as my toilet still has a warranty I'm good.
    • Report Post
    • Wonder how long until cashier laidoff. There will definitely be cutbacks perhaps kitchen will be understaffed as well. Enjoy waiting 15+ mins for that processed hotdog.
      Like how at mcdz your coffee just sits there for 5 mins cuz the person is busy and cant hand it to you, u see it but cant have it until its actually handed to you, lolz
    • Report Post
    • GrumpyOne1 wrote:
      Aug 20th, 2019 5:49 pm
      ...but you’re forfeiting the extended warranty of your hot dog.
      I like to take risks sometimes... This is one of those times.

      For those who haven't used self serve yet... So far it is way faster than the old way. Then again I see like double the staff vs before self serve. And I doubt see a food queue line like before.
    • Report Post
    • death_hawk wrote:
      Aug 20th, 2019 2:31 pm
      I wish McDonald's UI was as fast as Costco.
      I like instantly responsive stuff. McDonalds actually has animated transitions for some stupid reason.
      I guess because people like animation. How many people have smooth scrolling and fade menus on their computer? :)

      animation.png
    • Report Post
    • Have they installed these at all of the Costcos? Or only select at the moment? Would love to check out these new kiosks (althought I think they should have self-checkout instead).
    • Report Post
    • They have had this for 3 months or so in Calgary. Works great and much much faster.
    • Report Post
    • apnayloags wrote:
      Aug 20th, 2019 6:38 pm
      Wonder how long until cashier laidoff. There will definitely be cutbacks perhaps kitchen will be understaffed as well. Enjoy waiting 15+ mins for that processed hotdog.
      Like how at mcdz your coffee just sits there for 5 mins cuz the person is busy and cant hand it to you, u see it but cant have it until its actually handed to you, lolz
      Don't think the cashier will be laid off, more likely they'll be move in the back to prep food.
      That's not for all of them though.
    • Report Post
    • at Mississauga Costco...

      1 person deals with kiosk orders

      3-4 ppl deal with lineup orders...

      ordering on kiosk is fast.... but then you have a bunch of ppl standing there waiting....

      it's still new at my location so it's abit chaotic...
    • Report Post