LUFKIN, TX (KTRE) - One East Texas fuel company is trying out a new feature at gas pumps. Instead of using your card at the pump or going inside to wait in line to pay for gas, you can now use cash at the pump.
It's simple; just place your one, five, 10, or 20 dollar bills face up in the bill acceptor machine and start pumping.
"It gives the customer another choice. Where right now, unless you use a credit card or debit card, you've got to go inside most stores to make a purchase. So, this gives people who don't have a credit card or don't want to use their debit card, the option to use cash," Keith Williams, vice president of convenient store operations and petroleum operations, said. "They can make a purchase on gas outside the store without having to go in, especially if there's a line inside the store and they're in a rush."
Being able to avoid going inside the store is what customer Shontay Green feels is the best benefit of the machine.
"Yes, I would like to use the machine because of the lines and everything else," Shontay Green said.
Green usually fills her tank at the Polk Pick-It-Up stations in Lufkin.
"I don't usually pay with cash. I usually pay with my card," Green said.
When customers pay with their card, they don't have to worry about getting cash back.
If you give the bill acceptor too much money and need cash back after filling up your tank, the machine will print a receipt for you to take inside to receive your cash refund.
Vice president Keith Williams says the company first heard about the bill acceptor option at a trade show.
"It was an option that you could add to your dispensers to use; something we thought let's give it a try," Williams said.
Customers say they will give the new feature a try and have never seen a machine like this at any other gas stations in Lufkin or in other East Texas cities.
Williams said, "There's probably others. It is an option that other people can use. We don't have exclusive rights; I'm sure there's others."
In Lufkin, currently only the Polk Pick-it-up stations on Frank Avenue and Chestnut Street have the bill acceptor feature. Williams said maybe in the future more machines may be added to other locations.