Sunday, November 18, 2007

Pathmark Dix Hills

Ah, Pathmark in Dix Hills. So much to be said. This is another store that improved once construction began on new Stop&Shop store just west on Jericho.

It suffers from being at the far end of a truly difficult, overcrowded and sometimes dangerous parking lot in a center with about 10 other stores.

Some good points--it is much brighter and cleaner than it used to be and has made a real effort to open up the entranceway, which used to be hard to get through. As soon as you get through the door, you're greeted by rows of flowers and, usually, stacks of pies or cakes to the side, followed by the produce section.

The produce section is good, above average, and the store has added a number of health-food items right near the produce area.

The deli is busy, offering mostly Deitz and Watson meats and cheeses, providing good service. They always have a nice choice of rotisserie chickens--a favorite in our house--and lots of cheeses, dips and packaged meats near the deli.

There's also a pharmacy and an ATM. Bottle returns are in the far rear of the store.

Prices are decent, comparable to other stores in the area (and still cheaper than Stop&Shop). Aisles are packed and I'm still trying to figure out where some things are because they've moved since the reconstruction.

But checkout is a nightmare. Smack in the middle of the checkout aisles are some self-checkout sections, broken up by the understaffed courtesy desk. Pathmark must have gotten a discount on the self-checkout system though. You absolutely can't do anything until the shopper in front of you has completely removed all items. So you have to stand there stewing until the previous shopper is clear. It's obvious that many people don't realize that. They swipe their items, they figure out how to pay, they saunter to the end and begin packing up, not realizing that others can't make a move until they clear out of the way. I hope no one's falled for the con that these self-checkouts are faster; they aren't, anywhere that I've seen.

I was in this store three times in the last couple of days and each time, the checkout area seemed to get worse as pre-holiday shoppers seemed to be packing the place. Emptied carts were piling up near the courtesy desk. Not enough staffed checkouts moving quickly enough.

The store just seems a little understaffed; the help often seems really rushed, though polite in most cases.

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