Ever wonder how to pick the fastest line at the supermarket? A NY Times article by Christopher Mele has some advice.
Experts recommend getting behind a shopper with a full cart, looking for female cashiers, choosing a line towards the left, looking at what the customers ahead of you are buying, choosing a single line leads to several cashiers, and being aware of obstructions. However, most of waiting is all in your head:
Research has found that, on average, people overestimated how long they waited in a line by 36 percent. Customers are more concerned with how long a line is than how fast it moves, according to research by Prof. Ziv Carmon of the business school Insead and Prof. Daniel Kahneman of Princeton University. Given a choice between a slow-moving short line and a fast-moving long one, people will often opt for the short line, even if the waits are identical.
Next time you’re at the supermarket, pick your line using your head instead of your heart.