Walmart self-checkout secret: what signals the call for help button

Imagine going to self-checkout in a rush with only one item and then you get caught with the “wait for assistance” message.

Former Walmart employee Athenia Camacho took to TikTok to explain why that happens at the store. Her video currently has over 57,200 views.

For starters, any sort of ID check for items such as alcohol, tobacco or fireworks will set off the button because an employee has to enter the customer’s birthday.

She revealed that the “call for help” button will also signal an employee if a customer tries to purchase an item that was recalled. They will likely take it away because it was never meant to be sold.

Camacho also mentioned there are many items that require an age check, such as spray paint, certain nail polishes and cold medicine.

A former Walmart employee explains why you may need employee assistance at self-checkout.
TikTok/obeygoddess
Walmart self-checkout
Walmart has age restrictions on certain items.
Jeffrey Greenberg/Universal Imag

She discussed her own experience being denied buying super glue because she wasn’t old enough.

There are also restrictions on movies so that a 13-year-old can’t get away with buying an R-rated movie.

Camacho said Walmart employees are required to check IDs and there are security cameras to verify that they do. “Managers will see if we don’t check an ID, and we can really get in trouble for that,” she said.

Some people in the comments chimed in with their own experiences.

“I was so pissed in high school and had to be 18 for HIGHLIGHTERS,” one person commented.

“I got stopped for Mucinex before,” wrote another.

A Walmart self-checkout machine
Walmart’s self-checkout machines have resulted in theft charges.
Jeffrey Greenberg/Universal Imag

Walmart has previously been under fire after a woman claimed she was cited for theft after using one of its self-checkout machines in Arizona. The same happened to 62 other people, KGUN 9 reported.

Lawyer Sandra Barger told KGUN 9 she wanted better regulations for these machines because of how often people are charged for theft.

A lawyer on TikTok, Carrie Jernigan, has argued against using self-checkout machines entirely, claiming the stores use the checkout camera footage to accuse people of stealing.

A spokesperson for Walmart at the time told The Post, “This is not a practice Walmart participates in.”

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