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Thread: NJ Ban on Self-serve Gas Continues (for no apparent reason)

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    New Jersey Tour Guide Jersey Warren's Avatar
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    Post NJ Ban on Self-serve Gas Continues (for no apparent reason)

    I just read that Gov. Corzine has turned down a proposal to try self-service gas pumping on the New Jersey Turnpike as an experiment. Whenever there is a difference between the "New Jersey way" of doing things and the way other states do them, I ALMOST always favor the New Jersey way. Because, 99 percent of the time, the New Jersey way is usually more efficient.

    But not this time. In fact, I cannot understand why this proposal should even been controversial. Only Oregon and New Jersey prohibit customers from pumping their own gas. No one said that customers should be REQUIRED to pump their own gas just allow it to see how it works. And, in fact, it does work in 48 out of 50 states.

    I have found that it usually has little affect on price, but it does greatly speed up your visits to gas stations. Instead of being dependent on how quickly (or slowly) the attendant is in getting to your car, you just fill, and go.

    We have the Exxon-Mobil Speed Pass, which is a little plastic transponder that hangs on your key chain. You wave it across either the flying horse or the tiger on the gas pump and it automatically records your account number. You fill up and the receipt prints out and you take it and go. You don't even have to take out your wallet. Some of my gas stops are almost as quick as Indy 500 pit stops.

    What could be easier or faster than that? If New Jerseyans are still as impatient and time conscious as they were when I lived there, I would think they would welcome this chance to be able to get on the road much faster.

    These politicians have simply got to go!
    Last edited by Jersey Warren; 05-08-2006 at 08:52 AM.

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    New Jersey Ambassador Admin & Founder JerseyDevil's Avatar
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    Actually it was becuae he got a huge outcry from New Jerseyans - including me. For one thing, the argument about lowering the gas price by having self serve was a joke. The only way you could do that is if all the gas station attendants were fired. My cousin also had the thought that it may actually raise the cost of gas in New Jersey, because it may increase the insurance costs for the gas stations. Right now the only person the insurance companies have to worry about pumping the gas are employees. I'm sure insurance would be more expensive if there is no control on who pumps. I support full service. Only a few times is it inconvient when there is only one attendant and the station is busy - otherwise it's better full service.
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    Moderator MITHRANDIR's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JerseyDevil
    Actually it was becuae he got a huge outcry from New Jerseyans - including me. For one thing, the argument about lowering the gas price by having self serve was a joke. The only way you could do that is if all the gas station attendants were fired. My cousin also had the thought that it may actually raise the cost of gas in New Jersey, because it may increase the insurance costs for the gas stations. Right now the only person the insurance companies have to worry about pumping the gas are employees. I'm sure insurance would be more expensive if there is no control on who pumps. I support full service. Only a few times is it inconvient when there is only one attendant and the station is busy - otherwise it's better full service.
    I will agree with JD on this issue.

    Also, if you would compare the prices of fuel in NJ compared to neighboring states (MD, DE, PA, NY, CT) in general I think you will find the prices for fuel in NJ to be lower. In some cases this will be by as much as 25-30 cents.

    I doubt that there will be any long standing discount if we even do get "self-serve".

    (as an aside -- I never had any problems serving fuel myself. Usually, I do not hear any grief from the attendents.)
    Sincerely,
    Anthony


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    New Jersey Tour Guide Jersey Warren's Avatar
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    Default Credit Card Purchases Are the Test

    I guess I walked into a fray without knowing it, because I have been pumping my own gas since 1972. I could not imagine that anyone would oppose trying a potentially more efficient way to do something. (Much less using the power of government to limit that freedom.) Sure I miss "the good old days" when businesses of all kinds gave you lots of service. But, realistically, how many "full service" service stations in New Jersey, or anywhere else, have attendants who automatically check your oil and clean your windshields? And how many double-time out to you car and really hustle like the days when Korean War vets worked in gas stations?

    In my case, I ALWAYS pay by credit card. I absolutely NEVER use cash. So with a "full service" operation, first you wait in your car for up to a full minute for the guy to come. Then he goes and takes of care of other people while your tank is filling and may take up to two minutes to get back to you after the pump clicks off. The he tops it off. Then he takes your credit card and runs it through the machine, which may be back in the office of the station. Maybe another minute later he brings it back for you to sign. (Pay-at-the-pump operations do not require signatures. You simply swipe your card, or even better, the Exxon-Mobil Speedpass I described, and fill up.) When I first encountered pay-at-the-pump with your credit card in California in 1990 I almost jumped for joy, as I always do whenever someone thinks up a more efficient way to do something.

    So you've added anywhere from three to five minutes to the actual time required to fill up your tank. At 60 mph, I can be 3-5 miles down the road in the time to takes for an attendant to do what I can do.

    Then there is the issue of freedom. It is none of the state's business whether gas stations offer full service, self service, or service by dwarfs and elves. That should between the business and the customer, as in any free society.

    I love New Jersey with all my heart, but New Jerseyans, like others, are not immune from provincialism and a "that's-the-way-we've-always-done-it-here" mentality. I've found from my travels that borrowing ideas from other places is usually beneficial.

    Now this is just my opinion and I certainly respect those who disagree, but it is an opinion based on experiencing it both ways.

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    New Jersey Ambassador Admin & Founder JerseyDevil's Avatar
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    Actually most stations here are swipe the card and no signature required, only the older stations with the old pumps require that. So it's the same thing, just here you don't have to get out of your car. As I said, the only time it's really a problem is when the gas station is packed and they have one person working there. Generally it's not too bad though. I have pumped my own gas throughout the US, including while I lived in Indiana and West Virginia, I just don't see the benefits for New Jersey in it. People can argue that the pumnps would still be open, even if the station is closed, but in Washington state that was not the case and in Indiana it was mostly not the case.

    As for having true full service, that is true that you don't generally get that here anymore. You can always ask to have your windows wiped or your oil checked though and they do it for free.
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    Default Pump my own gas??????!!!!!

    This Jersey girl has never pumped a tank of gas, and I don't want to start doing it now. I need that time when I gas up in the morning to put on my lipstick, clean out my purse, call my mom, etc. ; )

    Seriously though...the whole thing is ridiculous.

    Debbie
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    New Jersey Ambassador Admin & Founder JerseyDevil's Avatar
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    See JW - New Jerseyans don't want self serve. Let the other states require you to get out in the sub zero temperatures, when the wind is hollwing and the snow is coming down, or when the rain is pouring. We like staying in our warm comfortable cars and have someone else pump it for us.
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    New Jersey Tour Guide Jersey Warren's Avatar
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    Smile Sort of like my Dad ...

    Quote Originally Posted by JerseyDevil
    See JW - New Jerseyans don't want self serve. Let the other states require you to get out in the sub zero temperatures, when the wind is hollwing and the snow is coming down, or when the rain is pouring. We like staying in our warm comfortable cars and have someone else pump it for us.
    My father, (born in Union City in 1926 and died in Forked River in 1989) never got used to the idea of having to bus your own trays in fast food places like McDonald's. He worked as a bus boy when he was a teenager and he thought that was the restaurant's job, not the customers'.

    And I'm inclined to agree with him.

    That's good news about only having to swipe the card for credit card purchases. I always hated having to write my signature on the little tray out the car window when the rain and snow were blowing in!

    P.S. to Debbie: Though you may not have to do it at home, I'd still be familiar with how to do it for out-of-state visits. In many places, they have no pump attendants, just a cashier.

    P.P.S. to all: I'm so glad that a little difference of opinion here does not produce any hard feelings. I didn't mean to come across as a "trouble maker"!
    Last edited by Jersey Warren; 05-05-2006 at 08:12 AM.

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    Moderator MITHRANDIR's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jersey Warren
    My father, (born in Union City in 1926 and died in Forked River in 1989) never got used to the idea of having to bus your own trays in fast food places like McDonald's. He worked as a bus boy when he was a teenager and he thought that was the restaurant's job, not the customers'.

    And I'm inclined to agree with him.

    That's good news about only having to swipe the card for credit card purchases. I always hated having to write my signature on the little tray out the car window when the rain and snow were blowing in!

    P.S. to Debbie: Though you may not have to do it at home, I'd still be familiar with how to do it for out-of-state visits. In many places, they have no pump attendants, just a cashier.

    P.P.S. to all: I'm so glad that a little difference of opinion here does not produce any hard feelings. I didn't mean to come across as a "trouble maker"!

    I do not mind a difference of opinion.

    I usually prefer to pump my own fuel.
    (I do not like it if someone else spills fuel on my car. If I do it, I am more forgiving. )

    Interesting tidbit regarding busing of tables. I only remember self-busing at Fast-food places.
    Sincerely,
    Anthony


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    New Jersey Tour Guide Jersey Warren's Avatar
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    Smile Before fast food

    Quote Originally Posted by MITHRANDIR
    I do not mind a difference of opinion.

    Interesting tidbit regarding busing of tables. I only remember self-busing at Fast-food places.
    I remember when there were NO fast-food places! Every restaurant had waitresses who came to your table and you left your dirty dishes there and someone took them away. The first time I went to a McDonald's I was 17. I didn't encounter Burger King, Pizza Hut, or Kentucky Fried Chicken until I was in my 20s.

    That was the great thing about growing up in New Jersey. Before fast food places, if you didn't want to go to a fancier restaurant, there were diners in every town.
    Last edited by Jersey Warren; 05-08-2006 at 08:33 AM. Reason: typo and to add a title

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    New Jersey Ambassador Admin & Founder JerseyDevil's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jersey Warren
    P.P.S. to all: I'm so glad that a little difference of opinion here does not produce any hard feelings. I didn't mean to come across as a "trouble maker"!
    No problems with having difference of opinions. As it states in the rules, people can disagree, just no flaming. People have to be respectful of each others opinions - no matter how wrong they are. Mithrandir can vouch that on the messageboard that we met on, I was into very heated political discussions. Since this is a business I run, I have to stay away from the controversial international political debates I used to have.
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    Count me in as a full-service supporter.

    When I went away for college, self-service was one thing that was an out-of-Jersey shock. I got used to it, but those first few times pumping my own gas at 18 yrs old, I had no idea WTF I was doing ! LOL

    It doesn't really save that much time, as you have to get out the car, pump the gas, and get back in. Like JD said, unless the place is busy or there is too few attendants (which rarely happens in my neck of the woods), then full service works just fine. And if it's true that insurance rates would increase the price of gas for self-service, then I say leave it be. Let's keep Jersey full service, it's one more thing that makes us Jersey !

    Comparison - what's faster ? Checking yourself out a Wal-Mart or a supermarket ? Or letting the cashier do it ? For me, 9 times out 10 it's faster to go to the cashier. I only go to those self-checkout lines when the lines for the cashiers are long.

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    New Jersey Tour Guide Jersey Warren's Avatar
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    Smile self-service versus real service

    Quote Originally Posted by MABL
    Count me in as a full-service supporter.

    When I went away for college, self-service was one thing that was an out-of-Jersey shock. I got used to it, but those first few times pumping my own gas at 18 yrs old, I had no idea WTF I was doing ! LOL

    It doesn't really save that much time, as you have to get out the car, pump the gas, and get back in. Like JD said, unless the place is busy or there is too few attendants (which rarely happens in my neck of the woods), then full service works just fine. And if it's true that insurance rates would increase the price of gas for self-service, then I say leave it be. Let's keep Jersey full service, it's one more thing that makes us Jersey !

    Comparison - what's faster ? Checking yourself out a Wal-Mart or a supermarket ? Or letting the cashier do it ? For me, 9 times out 10 it's faster to go to the cashier. I only go to those self-checkout lines when the lines for the cashiers are long.
    Looks like there's a consensus here! As a rule, I am very disenchanted by the declining lack of service in our culture. Much of it started with fast food restaurants, as we discussed above. I stay away from self-service lines at Wal Mart and another chain we have here called Winn-Dixie. Checkers are trained to do that I'm not. (Besides, the full service Publix supermarket has Taylor Pork Roll and Sabrett hot dog onions in sauce from East Rutherford!)

    I agree with everyone here that having someone serve you rather than doing it yourself (including gas stations) is at its best preferable. But my libertarian political instincts bristle at any form of government regulation. I would much rather leave the choice up to the business and have customers boycott businesses that do not provide adequate service.

    When I still lived in New Jersey, a chain of dairy stores called Garden State Farms wanted to lower milk prices but the state told them they couldn't. I disagreed with that government interference, too.

    And when I lived in Massachusetts, I voted aginst the "bottle bill" (requiring deposits on bottles) and I also voted to repeal the mandatory seatbelt law and the motorcycle helmet law, even though I ALWAYS use my seat belt and don't own a motorcycle. Does anyone get a picture of me yet?

    Anyway, this discussion has been fun!

    P.S. The delegates from New Jersey having spoken, I have removed the "thumbs down" symbol from the header and replaced it with a document, indicating that all views have been duly noted!
    Last edited by Jersey Warren; 05-11-2006 at 10:49 AM.

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    Full service voter here. For the past 28 years I lived in SC and you are hard pressed to find a full service station. Those that do pump gas for you are more than 10 cents per gallon over the self-service.

    I can pump my own gas and check my own oil, but I prefer not to.

    I hope NJ never goes to self-service.

    I don't mind signing a credit card slip at the window in the rain and snow--it beats getting out of the car, pumping the gas, sloshing inside to pay and wading through the stuff to return to my car.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jersey Warren
    I just read that Gov. Corzine has turned down a proposal to try self-service gas pumping on the New Jersey Turnpike as an experiment. Whenever there is a difference between the "New Jersey way" of doing things and the way other states do them, I ALMOST always favor the New Jersey way. Because, 99 percent of the time, the New Jersey way is usually more efficient.

    But not this time. In fact, I cannot understand why this proposal should even been controversial. Only Oregon and New Jersey prohibit customers from pumping their own gas. No one said that customers should be REQUIRED to pump their own gas just allow it to see how it works. And, in fact, it does work in 48 out of 50 states.

    I have found that it usually has little affect on price, but it does greatly speed up your visits to gas stations. Instead of being dependent on how quickly (or slowly) the attendant is in getting to your car, you just fill, and go.

    We have the Exxon-Mobil Speed Pass, which is a little plastic transponder that hangs on your key chain. You wave it across either the flying horse or the tiger on the gas pump and it automatically records your account number. You fill up and the receipt prints out and you take it and go. You don't even have to take out your wallet. Some of my gas stops are almost as quick as Indy 500 pit stops.

    What could be easier or faster than that? If New Jerseyans are still as impatient and time conscious as they were when I lived there, I would think they would welcome this chance to be able to get on the road much faster.

    These politicians have simply got to go!
    There's actually a very good reason why New Jersey, like Oregon, bans self-serve gasoline: jobs. There are lots of college kids... laid-off manufacturing workers... retirees... and people born with little ambition... for whom pumping gas pays the rent. The latter we might not feel especially sorry for, but which would you rather have him do... fill 'er up, or snatch your wife's purse? For me that one's a no-brainer.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jersey Warren
    I remember when there were NO fast-food places! Every restaurant had waitresses who came to your table and you left your dirty dishes there and someone took them away. The first time I went to a McDonald's I was 17. I didn't encounter Burger King, Pizza Hut, or Kentucky Fried Chicken until I was in my 20s.

    That was the great thing about growing up in New Jersey. Before fast food places, if you didn't want to go to a fancier restaurant, there were diners in every town.
    I remember driving back from Expo '67 in Montreal and spotting my first McDonalds in Rhode Island! I knew about Mickey D's from the New York television commercials... but hadn't actually seen one until that trip. The first McDonald's I remember showing up in Jersey was the one in Union out on 22... that would have been either 1968 or '69. I believe it's still there.

    Yeah, and the diners were great. The greasier the spoon, the better. Remember that song "Tom's Diner" by Suzanne Vega? Talk about nostalgia!
    Last edited by Roadbldr '59; 03-01-2007 at 11:40 PM. Reason: clarification

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    Default Theres more

    Quote Originally Posted by Roadbldr '59 View Post
    There's actually a very good reason why New Jersey, like Oregon, bans self-serve gasoline: jobs. There are lots of college kids... laid-off manufacturing workers... retirees... and people born with little ambition... for whom pumping gas pays the rent. The latter we might not feel especially sorry for, but which would you rather have him do... fill 'er up, or snatch your wife's purse? For me that one's a no-brainer.
    Jobs are always a good thing but I really don't want to get my hands dirty even if you keep gloves in the car then the gloves smell like gas and I believe someone mentioned time if you think about it you would probably waste more time self serve at least if you pay cash first you gotta go into the store or window then you gotta wait in line anyway if there are people ahead of you
    then theres always the one (not so bright) person who has no idea what pump hes at not to mention the other non gas customers buying smokes ,chips condoms whatever and after all of this you will pay more $ then at the full serve stations we have now

    Nahh I think I'll wait in my nice warm car for the gas jockey to come fill my tank
    Just my thoughts

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    New Jersey Tour Guide Jersey Warren's Avatar
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    Default Let's separate the issues...

    There are actually two separate issues here:

    1) Which is more convenient, self-servce, or full service?
    2) Should the GOVERNMENT make full service mandatroy by LAW?

    On number one, I am in full agreement with those who prefer full-service. Who wouldn't be?

    But on number two, I have to part company with those who think self-service stations should be banned by law.

    This is completely unwarranted interference into the free marketplace by government. Government should NEVER have anything to do with the free market. A government big enough to ban self-service gas stations is big enough to take control of ALL business and impose a socialist economy.

    That is why I am an advocate of free market economics, as taught by the Austrian school of Ludwig Von Mises.

  19. #19

    Default little confused

    Quote Originally Posted by Jersey Warren View Post
    There are actually two separate issues here:

    1) Which is more convenient, self-servce, or full service?
    2) Should the GOVERNMENT make full service mandatroy by LAW?

    On number one, I am in full agreement with those who prefer full-service. Who wouldn't be?

    But on number two, I have to part company with those who think self-service stations should be banned by law.

    This is completely unwarranted interference into the free marketplace by government. Government should NEVER have anything to do with the free market. A government big enough to ban self-service gas stations is big enough to take control of ALL business and impose a socialist economy.

    That is why I am an advocate of free market economics, as taught by the Austrian school of Ludwig Von Mises.
    UMMM Ok you sound educated which I am not but In a laymen kinda way
    lemme say I don't believe there is a free marketplace goverments regulate
    everything from the price of gas to how much insurance I need on my car
    then force companys to do things for instance ma bell , microsoft
    I believe that if this were a true free marketplace I would get my gas for 58 cents a gallon while filling up they would clean my window check my oil and tire pressure etc. other wise i would go to the station that did

    I'm babbling sorry see my uneducatedness coming threw that wasn't even a wordLOL

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    New Jersey Tour Guide Jersey Warren's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by njmusic View Post
    UMMM Ok you sound educated which I am not but In a laymen kinda way
    lemme say I don't believe there is a free marketplace goverments regulate
    everything from the price of gas to how much insurance I need on my car
    then force companys to do things for instance ma bell , microsoft
    I believe that if this were a true free marketplace I would get my gas for 58 cents a gallon while filling up they would clean my window check my oil and tire pressure etc. other wise i would go to the station that did

    I'm babbling sorry see my uneducatedness coming threw that wasn't even a wordLOL
    You instinctively know the truth: We do NOT have a free marketplace and have not for many years. But the solution is not to impose more regulations to correct problems cause by previous regulations. The solution is to deregulate and let the chips fall where they may. I think yo already know this, because it makes sense and you have not been infected by too much education in Keynesian socialist economics!

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