A trip the Redbox has become as much a part of the American family tradition as pizza night or taco dinners. These small red boxes that hold newer release DVDs can be found at nearly every McDonald’s, Circle K, Walmart, CVS, Meijer’s and a slew of other locations. However, even though it might seem like every American is using Redbox, not every American understands common etiquette that should be as easy to figure out as common sense… oh wait, we’re lacking that these days, too.
Wondering if you are one of the culprits who are butchering common Redbox decency? Here are some rules of etiquette you should follow when using the Redbox, standing in line at the Redbox or just thinking about the Redbox.
Common Sense Redbox Etiquette
I posted a quick note on Facebook that I was going to write a Redbox Etiquette guide and several people responded with what they thought common sense etiquette should be. I have included their ideas here as well as some of my own.
Rule # 1: Respect Others’ Time
As fellow freelance writer and respected friend, Mary Beth P. Adomaitis, pointed out, if you are going to be looking for a movie longer than a few minutes and the person behind you has a movie to return, please let that person return her movie first. For one thing, she might have just the movie you are standing there looking for. Remember that movies from all over the country can be returned to any Redbox, so you never know what surprise favorite that person might have in hand. Plus, it is just a nice thing to do.
Rule # 2: Be Decisive
Ryan Dube, owner of Top Secret Writers, mentioned that you should only have to go through the movies once or twice.
Going through the entire collection of movies 15 times with a growing line of people behind you will not make a new movie you like magically appear.
Unless there is no one else in sight, be decisive. Even if you pick a movie that bombs, it isn’t life or death or brain surgery. Just pick something.
Rule # 3: Plan Ahead
Writer and editor friend Crystal Schwanke suggested that people look online or download an app to decide what they might like to get before they even arrive at the Redbox. You can even reserve ahead, if you want to make sure that movie is there when you arrive. Crystal shared:
You can even find out which machine has what you want so you don’t waste your own (and most important, of course!) time standing in line at the one that’s out of what you want.
Rule # 4: Don’t Stand So… Don’t Stand So… Don’t Stand So Close to Me
The Police (a British rock band from the 80s) had it right, when they sang “Don’t stand so close to me.” Even though I’m not a schoolgirl and I don’t have a crush on the person in line behind me, I would really appreciate it if he would not stand so close that I can feel his breath on my neck. Gross. Just gross. I inch forward. He inches forward. It is times like this that I wish I had a little see-through wall that went all around me so that people could not cross over the personal space zone and get all up in my business. Back off! Don’t breathe on the person in front of you.
Rule # 5: Don’t Make Creepy Jokes
I have to say that there is something about Redbox that seems to draw creeps. Or, maybe it is just that people don’t understand how to behave in such close proximity and can’t think of something to say that isn’t perverted. I do not want to know that you and wife plan to re-enact a scene from the movie you just returned or that you enjoyed The Call and that the kidnapper is your role model. Yes, both things have been said to me in the Redbox waiting line. The role model comment freaked me out so bad that I waited in McDonald’s for 20 minutes before leaving, took an indirect route home and watched my rear view mirror the entire way. The truth is that it was probably a man with a twisted sense of humor who went on home and laughed over the thought of how freaked out I was. Still, just keep the creepy jokes to yourself.
Rule # 6: Don’t Call Someone to Figure Out What Movie You Want
“Mickey Joe, OMG, so these are the movies they have…” names off every movie in the box.
At this point, I am tapping my right foot.
“No wait. Which one? Let me go back. Here is the blurb…blah blah blah.”
I’m now considering if I want to leave or just punch her in the back of the head. Is it worth going to jail? It might be.
“Nah. I don’t like that one either. What about this one?”
Seriously? Just don’t do this. It is so far beyond rude that I don’t even know how to explain why it is rude. Just understand that it is and stop doing it. Tell Mickey Joe not to do it either.
Rule # 7: Redbox Is Not a Toy
I once waited for 15 minutes while some children “chose” a movie. I was being patience, because they were children. Meanwhile, their father was having a conversation nearby and I just assumed once they chose their movie that he would come pay for it.
After my long wait, he was like, “We’re not getting another movie. We already have three. Let’s go.”
Unbelievable! Take two seconds to pay attention to what your children are doing and that there is a line of four people waiting to use the machine. I don’t blame the children, by the way. I love kids (well, most kids). I blame the dad for being completely clueless and completely inconsiderate. Let’s hope his kids do NOT grow up to be just like him.
What Is Your Biggest Redbox Pet Peeve?
What drives you insane about Redbox? These are the things I’ve noticed. I’m sure there are more. Maybe we can change the world one Redbox user at a time by sharing our thoughts. Then again, the ruddest of Redbox users may not even take the time to read such an article. I just choose to always hope.