7-Eleven's 1st self-checkout store in S'pore lets you take items without scanning them

The future is here.

Winnie Li | January 31, 2024, 04:26 PM



Convenience store chain 7-Eleven opened its first self-checkout outlet in Singapore on Jan. 22, 2024.

It is located at Esplanade MRT station.

The outlet, named "7-Eleven Shop & Go", is located at Hive 2.0, a retail innovation hub at Esplanade Xchange, said public transport operator SMRT in a Facebook post.

What is the store like?

When Mothership visited 7-Eleven Shop & Go at around 8pm on Jan. 27, a group of patrons had just left the store.

Image by Winnie Li/Mothership

To enter the store, you need to tap a Visa/MasterCard credit or debit card at the gantry. No other mobile application is required.

Image by Winnie Li/Mothership

A pre-authorisation charge of S$1 will be placed on the card.

This fee will be used to offset any purchases made or refunded to you in one to 14 working days if nothing is bought.

Image by Winnie Li/Mothership

The offerings at 7-Eleven Shop & Go are similar to those sold at other 7-Eleven outlets, which include snacks, drinks, and ice cream.

Video by Winnie Li/Mothership

After picking out your items, you can proceed to leave the store via the exit gantry without needing to scan them.

Customers are not provided with carrier bags (if you need one, you could bring your own bag).

Your purchases will be automatically charged to the credit or debit card you used to enter the store.

According to 7-Eleven, this is made possible with Artificial Intelligence (AI) technology, smart cameras, and IoT (Internet of Things) sensors which can track customers' in-store shopping behaviours, including detecting items that are picked out and when shoppers leave the store with their purchased items.

Patrons who purchase a ready-to-eat meal can heat it up using a microwave oven outside the store.

Image by Winnie Li/Mothership

Keen to head down?

Those who patronise 7-Eleven's first unmanned store from now till Feb. 29, 2024, will be able to enjoy a 10 per cent store-wide discount. There is no minimum spending requirement.

Separately, there is a limit of five shoppers at any time within the store.

So do take note of that if you're planning to visit 7-Eleven Shop & Go during your lunch break or the morning/evening commuting peak hours.

According to Serene Seow, Managing Director of 7-Eleven Singapore, this limit was implemented to ensure a "comfortable shopping experience".

However, 7-Eleven will continue to monitor and adjust this limit if necessary in the future.

What if help is needed?

While the store is unmanned, customers do not need to panic if they encounter a problem while shopping there.

Shoppers can seek assistance at a manned 7-Eleven store located at Esplanade Xchange, which is just a stone's throw away from the Shop & Go outlet.

The manned 7-Eleven store at Esplanade Xchange. Image by Winnie Li/Mothership

Alternatively, customers can reach out to 7-Eleven via the QR Code located at the exit gantry of the Shop & Go store for assistance, said Seow.

More self-checkout stores to come

Seow also informed Mothership that 7-Eleven plans to open more self-checkout stores in Singapore.

While the convenience store chain is searching for suitable locations and customer demographics for its next self-checkout store, Seow said the first Shop & Go outlet serves as a platform for 7-Eleven to understand its customers better so that it can "fine-tune" its future initiatives.

"We aim to continue to introduce innovations while adapting to the changing retail workforce landscape, as well as the evolving needs of customers."

Top image by Winnie Li