Banking On Foot

by admin on April 11, 2017

Very recently I needed to conduct bank business over lunch hour. Our fairly small town has two banks and both close the lobby for ‘noon hour’ (as does most businesses) but they have drive through that’s manned. Also their ATM’s are on the same wall near the window. So even if you just want to play with plastic you have to go there to do it. I am not the only walk up, there are quite a few that don’t even use a motorcycle or bicycle but merely walk up to the teller window.

This day it was going to break 100 degrees, I walk up and there are two pickups in line. That’s fine, I go stand behind pickup #2 in the sun, and at least the exhaust is blowing that way. #1  has just started transaction. Another pickup shows up, pulls in, and the guy rolls down window to tell me to move. I politely tell him I’m in line. He honks for me to move. #4 pulls up behind him. I don’t move, I am in place behind #2 where I would be IF I was sitting in a vehicle. #1 finishes, #2 rolls up, and I walk up in place. #3 is sitting back there and honking. #2 takes a while. #5 vehicle joins line. #2 leaves and I step up, and I thought #3 was going to run me over.

I was supposed to move my body parts as he was in a HURRY and I wasn’t in a car. Mind you on any weekday a walk up is a common thing. So many in line isn’t but, walk ups are. At least I am in the shade, and the gal is managing despite Mr. Horn  & Profanity back there to do my transaction. Then I step off and #3 almost runs me over to get up there. I went around corner as she told him he was being refused service.  Both banks have a posted policy that they can refuse you teller drive through service and require you to come into the lobby during lobby hours.

My question is, am I that in the wrong? I probably do walk up at either bank two or three times a week; and I am far from the only one.  I took my place in line, didn’t try to cut, and dealt with exhaust (wind was going other way thankfully) and standing in the sun until everyone advanced far enough. Each bank has just one teller window for drive through so there’s no other option during noon hour. One bank has ATM before the window, one after, and this was the before  bank so even if I had wanted to do ATM I would have had to wait until I got up to the ATM (they left no space at all next to it to stand) if I’d wanted to use that instead. Like I said, am I that wrong? 0807-15

I’m not sure why you need me to validate you when the bank teller served you and then refused to service the rude driver behind you.  The bank has told you via actions that it does not consider you to have done anything wrong.  I will note, however, that every bank in my locale does not allow walk ups, bicycles or horse driven vehicles to use the drive-through banking windows.

{ 82 comments… read them below or add one }

Anonymous April 11, 2017 at 6:54 am

No horse driven vehicles? What if the person AND their horse had to visit the bank at the same time?

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admin April 11, 2017 at 10:13 am

In areas of the US where there is a significant Amish and Old Order Mennonite population, you do see buggies going through bank drive throughs.

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Rubies April 11, 2017 at 11:46 am

I second the previous poster. Target even has hitching posts with shade for horses in Amish country. Buggies go through bank and fast food drive-thrus all the time.

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NostalgicGal April 11, 2017 at 3:09 pm

There’s a place in Minnesota that snowmobiles go through the drive thru regularly during the winter.

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Rubies April 12, 2017 at 11:30 am

That sounds AWESOME.

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Cleosia April 11, 2017 at 7:26 am

Sounds like it’s something that is specific to your town because the lobby is closed during the noon hour. Most banks don’t allow anything but motorized vehicles to use the drive-thru windows. But most banks don’t close their lobby during the noon hour either.

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Tan April 11, 2017 at 7:30 am

I think this is simply road rage very much like people honking at cyclists at a junction as the wait to cross a lane of traffic. As most people are aware some people in cars do tend to think they own the road and tend to view most other uses as an secondary. It doesn’t help that psychologically the person sees themselves as armored /shielded whereas walkers, bikers and riders seem very exposed. Just carry on and remember that people like this are likely to find themselves at the side of the road at some point: either in a ditch or being addressed by an officer of the law. (Incidentally the only drive-throughs near me is a take away but from 11-12 the restraunt “closes” (people are in there finishing but no new customers) walk ups are allowed during this hour, and there’s even a sign saying so)

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KenderJ April 11, 2017 at 4:51 pm

The driver was very rude, no question, however, it occurs to me that he might be from somewhere else and didn’t know it was common practice in the OPs area. In my state, it is illegal to walk up to a drive-up due to safety issues of mixing pedestrians and motor vehicles. The driver was still rude, though, even if he didn’t know the local ways by continuing to be a jerk throughout the waiting time.

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Tan April 13, 2017 at 7:33 am

There are many areas near me where pedestrians (and bikes &riders) have priority over motor vehicles. If you cant drive at low speed and avoid hitting a person, you really shouldn’t be on the road.

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Vicki April 11, 2017 at 7:48 am

Where I used to live (Bellevue, WA) the nearest branch of one bank had only a drive-up ATM, and we were told that for routine deposits or to withdraw cash, we should use that ATM, and stand in line as described. (The alternative would have been a sidewalk ATM at a different branch.) This seemed weird to me as well, but drivers using that ATM seemed to think it was normal.

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BellyJean April 11, 2017 at 8:00 am

So, the driver is definitely in the wrong. And, I could say, “perhaps the bank could add a sign or 2 that walk-ups are allowed”. However – I don’t think this driver is of the mindset to read and/or care about practices that are outside their normal day-to-day.

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Wild Irish Rose April 11, 2017 at 8:15 am

I’ve never seen any business with a service window allow anything but motor vehicles to use it. In my mind, this is a safety issue more than anything else. Is the bank going to be liable for any pedestrian in its drive-up line who gets hurt?

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AS April 11, 2017 at 9:10 am

I was thinking the same thing as the admin – why do you need Etiquette dame, or any of us to validate your actions, when the bank made it very clear. It was a good submission for ehell. And good of the bank, especially the teller, to stand up to bullies – shows iron spine. Good that you didn’t pick a fight, or be intimidated by the bully. But there is no need for doubting the propriety of what you did.

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Victoria April 11, 2017 at 9:30 am

The bank I worked at refused walk-ups in the drive-thru due to the danger. Most people that go through a drive-thru aren’t keeping an eye out for people on foot, and our insurance rates would have been much higher if we allowed people on foot in the drive-thru. We didn’t close the lobby during lunch though, so that could make the difference here.

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stacey April 11, 2017 at 9:47 am

I agree. It seems discriminatory, but drive through lines are for vehicles. I realize that the two banks OP refers to have made it almost a necessity to combine pedestrian and vehicular traffic, but it’s dangerous. Not only rude but inattentive drivers could come too close for comfort. If you think about it, there is no other venue that comes to mind in the USA where it’s customary to combine foot traffic, vehicles etc… Even bicycles are often on their own path. It’s the bank’s responsibility to allow equal access for its clientele and it seems like they need to offer a walk-up ATM that is outside of the lobby and does not also interface with the drive-through.

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Dee April 11, 2017 at 10:08 am

This isn’t an etiquette question; it’s a banking and safety question. The bank has okayed the practise, so that is covered. OP, you might want to request that the bank post a sign at the entrance to the line-up, ensuring others understand that the bank welcomes walk-ups. Otherwise, in this situation, the only thing I can see you did wrong was to not call the police at the first sign of threat. You could have been seriously injured or killed by the road rage rodents in their vehicles. That’s not something to take lightly.

I suspect the bank will resolve this by banning walk-ups entirely. That still doesn’t address how pedestrian customers can access services during lunch hour but I can foresee the bank not wanting to take on the liability of allowing pedestrians in a driving lane. In my city walk-ups are allowed (at least at some banks) but I think they’re rather rare and I’ve never heard of driving goons making it an issue. But if it becomes a problem I expect the banks would forbid it, as it isn’t a very safe practise and our banks don’t close at the lunch hour so customers do have an alternative.

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Cora April 11, 2017 at 10:16 am

You know, you don’t have to win. It would be a gift to yourself to stop pressuring yourself to do so. Why not just let Road Rage guy go? It’s, what, maybe five minutes more to wait? You’re in the shade, you have your things in order, he’s a jerk. Let him be a jerk, it’s his heart attack. Then you go and do your banking and leave. No fuss, no worry, no writing to E-Hell over your shock and awe that people are rude.

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Reaver April 11, 2017 at 2:25 pm

Because she’s on her lunch break, and I don’t think you should let jerkbutts win just because it’s easier.

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Annie April 11, 2017 at 4:51 pm

We could all allow rude people to get their way, and we could not dwell on it afterward, but then what would we read on E-Hell?

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Wild Irish Rose April 12, 2017 at 8:32 am

HAHAHAHAHA!!!!!!

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NostalgicGal April 14, 2017 at 3:23 am

Me three….

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Kate April 11, 2017 at 6:41 pm

Actually from what he wrote it sounds like he wasn’t in the shade, he had to deal with the exhaust of the cars while he waited, and he was on his lunch break. All things that make it very unpleasant for him to let the truck go ahead of him. And unfortunately it isn’t always possible to wait until after work or Saturday or what have you to use the ATM.

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Yet Another Laura April 11, 2017 at 6:57 pm

So…

People who aren’t jerks should give way to people who are jerks? I’ll pass on that. For the record, I have used the drive through on a bicycle even when the lobby is open. The tellers prioritize the drive through lane over the people in the lobby.

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BellyJean April 12, 2017 at 8:20 am

Sweet – this teaches me to be a jerk to get my way when I want it. Screw sharing and patience (things people learn in kindergarten).
(Unfortunately – there are many very nice people who have been walked on way too many times, and that is the actual result…) 🙁

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Wild Irish Rose April 12, 2017 at 8:34 am

I respectfully disagree. First off, OP is on a time limit (lunch hour). Second off, allowing rude people to have their way will only perpetuate rudeness. Road Rage guy can wait his turn or go elsewhere to do his banking. It’s called respect, and in my opinion, we should request it as well as offer it.

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Raradra April 17, 2017 at 1:33 pm

People like the Road Rage guy become who they are because no one ever tells them “no”. OP had a right to be in that line and I don’t see anything wrong with him refusing to be a doormat and let Road Rage guy go first. Frankly, I think OP should have reported the guy to the police, but I can understand that OP, being on lunch break, didn’t have time for that.

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Ashley April 11, 2017 at 10:56 am

It seems like it’s common and expected where you are, and the bank handled it. Maybe they could have some more clear signage about walk ups being allowed though.

Where I live, that wouldn’t fly. No one closes during the noon hour and at most of the drive throughs people fly around the building without really think about what might be on the other side.

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Rubies April 11, 2017 at 11:49 am

A little off-topic, but can’t the banks in your area stagger their employees’ lunch breaks so that lobby and drive-thru can be open? I find it ridiculous that they would close the lobby during the only time of their customers’ day that they are actually open for business.

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AMC April 11, 2017 at 12:03 pm

I commend you for waiting your turn in line despite it meaning you had to stand in the sun and breathe in exhaust. The one time I’ve ever personally encountered a walk-up at a bank, I was driving up to the ATM when a women in a car to my right jumped out of her vehicle, leapt over a shrub and ran right in front of me to use the ATM before I could reach it. That really fried my cheese. So, good for you for waiting in line like everyone else, car or no car.

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Green123 April 11, 2017 at 12:13 pm

I’m British, and I find the idea of drive-through banks utterly bewildering.

Do people ever leave their cars?

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Kamatari April 11, 2017 at 2:52 pm

It may sound crazy, but not really. Think about it this way, look at the map of the USA and compare it to the map of England. According to Google/Wikipedia, the population for England is about 53 million, while the USA has a population of about 326 million. America has a little over 6x the population of England, but without question has much, much more land mass than England. So, it is easy to see just how much space is available in America. Now imagine how much time it must take to get anywhere; in rural areas, it takes a long time just to cover distance, and in the cities, it takes a long time because of traffic. Most employees get a 30 minute lunch break, and because you’re in America with all the space/traffic, you spend/spent most of it traveling to get your lunch (if you didn’t drive to the store in your car previously to buy ingredients to bring with you to work). You can spend 1-10 minutes inside a fast food restaurant, or waiting several minutes in line at the grocery store, but all that eats into your break time. By the time you actually get back to work to eat, your break is over. Drive thus save a LOT of time believe it or not.

Basically, Americans spend a lot of time in their cars because they are necessary to get anywhere. I believe that’s part of why the obesity epidemic is so bad in America. In places like Japan, where it’s more practical to walk everywhere, there are low rates of obesity. They have grocery stores close everywhere they go and it’s much easier for them to travel on foot. In America, you’d end up walking several miles round trip.

It is sheer laziness for people to wait over ten minutes to get a parking spot at the front entrance of a store, or to park their car and walk into a bank to sort their affairs, but at least in going to places, cars are a necessity.

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Margo April 12, 2017 at 9:26 am

I think it has more to do with the age of the country and many towns.

In the UK (and much of Europe) towns were not built with cars in mind, so in the majority of places it isn’t practical to add drive-through options. You do see it for some things, mainly fast food restaurants, in places where there have been added to modern, out of town areas where they can be built into the design from the outset.

Banks tend to be in town centres – my local bank is in a 200 year old building, for instance. It doesn’t have a car park, let alone anywhere you could fit a drive-through.

The thing which surprised me the first time I saw it, (coming from the UK) was visting Turkey, and finding that a lot of ATMs are in their own little kiosks. However, when you go in and realise that they provide shade and AC, and considering how hot it can get there, it makes sense. I have since also seem something similar in Wisconsin, although I assume that there, it is about Winter temperatures, not summer heat!

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Annie April 11, 2017 at 4:59 pm

I’ve lived in the US my whole life, but I agree that it is bewildering. There’s a great blog that addresses this: http://www.mrmoneymustache.com/2013/04/22/curing-your-clown-like-car-habit/

It says, “The clowns actually sit for several minutes in a self-imposed traffic jam, engines idling, just so somebody can hand them some *!?% through the window of their car!” (Offensive language bleeped by me).

Warning: it includes language some may find offensive.

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Miss Herring April 18, 2017 at 9:49 pm

I am another fan of that blog, but I agree about the language! Phew!

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Lanes April 11, 2017 at 6:41 pm

To be fair, this seems to be a lunch-time-only thing, so that they can run minimal staff. One person couldn’t run a lobby alone. It’s actually kind of clever, I think.

I’ve seen a drive-up ATM here in NZ though… and then we wonder why we have one of the most obese populations in the world. -.-

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Kate April 11, 2017 at 6:42 pm

It isn’t a drive through bank, it is an ATM.

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Dee April 11, 2017 at 6:55 pm

Well, I’m here in Canada and I wonder, too, if people will eventually forget how to do anything on foot. Long, snaking line-ups of cars winding through parking lots, blocking other traffic just trying to exit their parking spots, just to buy a cup of coffee via the drive-through. Ugh. Our city had the opportunity to ban new drive-throughs in conjunction with other common sense environmental measures but, of course, we couldn’t do something so simple and effective. That would never do.

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Maureen April 12, 2017 at 5:53 am

Dee, in Canada here, too. What *further* baffles me is that if one parks their car and walks in there is zero wait time. Why someone would sit on their lazy posterior for 20+ minutes is beyond me. The city I live in had to restrict access because of traffic jams.

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A different Tracy April 12, 2017 at 7:34 am

Zero wait time? I don’t know why you’d make that assumption. In many of my local businesses, the drive-through is faster than going inside, particularly since you don’t have to park and walk.

Drive-throughs are more convenient if you have small kids with you, if the weather is poor, if you have mobility issues, etc. But it’s awesome that you’d look at my sister-in-law and conclude she’s lazy just because she doesn’t want to leave her elderly mother in the car, or encourage her to hobble into the bank with her.

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Dee April 12, 2017 at 4:34 pm

Of course, there weren’t elderly people, small children, poor weather conditions, etc., in years past before drive-throughs were invented, so we can’t expect people today to actually go inside buildings to do their business. They clearly have challenges no one else worked with in generations past (sarcasm intended).

The only difference between now and then is that no one used to expect instant anything (even if the “instant” part is only an illusion). If you wanted coffee in the morning you brewed yourself a cup, you didn’t drive to a restaurant to get one to go. You did your banking once a week or less. Doughnuts were a treat, not a daily meal replacement. Ditto for fast food. Imagine if those things were considered a rare treat and not a daily necessity – what an incredible amount of time and money would be saved by those who so willingly now waste their lives in line-ups.

Rubies April 12, 2017 at 11:36 am

I often find it takes just as long, or longer, to make a purchase inside a business, than to use the drive-thru.

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Maureen April 12, 2017 at 4:42 pm

Goodness, ”A Different Tracy” – you need a hug, dear. I was speaking of where I live, not where you live.

Cattra April 11, 2017 at 11:19 pm

I’m Australian and I feel the same. Such a novel idea over here. We only have drive-through fast food with the same parameters as above – only motor vehicles (ie motorbike, car). No pedestrians or cyclists (or horse drawn carriages) 🙂

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Dippy April 12, 2017 at 8:28 am

when you have small kids/babies, drive through everything is a Godsend! It’s a royal pain to get kids in and out of carseats multiple times for short errands.

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Joni April 15, 2017 at 2:50 pm

That’s a really good point especially in light of dee’s comment above. I’m sure that when my grandmothers were raising kids and there were no drive through banks, it was a lot easier to get the kids out of the car and into the bank – because they weren’t secured in car seats/seatbelts, they were just bouncing around the back of the station wagon like popcorn. I don’t think there are a lot of people (my mother-in-law excepted) who would like to go back to those days.

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Dee April 16, 2017 at 10:04 am

I don’t know how old you think I am but car seats were required well before my kids were born, while drive-throughs were a new concept (fast food only) when my oldest was little. All banking and shopping was done by physically entering a building. It was tough. It was a very busy time, just as busy as it is now, and I would still love if drive-throughs went extinct. They do not save time or money but they do encourage people to stop thinking and to just obey the corporate mandate.

And that’s the problem, since the environmental damage is huge and that creates more illness, which takes more time and money from a person’s daily life; it takes more money and time to drive and sit, waiting, for a cup of coffee or that hamburger that parents think is an acceptable dinner for their kids, instead of an easy and cheap to make solutions at home. People used to consider their banking needs at two week intervals instead of the current oftentimes daily bank use which, not surprisingly, results in general overspending in the population. In fact, I remember a time when debt was not considered acceptable, with the exception of a mortgage, so credit cards were viewed with suspicion. And now, of course, kids grow up thinking debt is a part of daily life and we can clearly see how that affects the country as a whole, and individuals in particular. I do like credit cards but the attitude that people have so willingly adopted, specifically formulated to favour banks, businesses and corporations at the expense of those same people, is what is most scary.

So, while it’s nice to have these fantasies about how lovely and easy things were in the old days compared to now, it is also necessary to step into reality on a regular basis and understand that some things, like drive-throughs, are a marketing scheme that negatively affects us all. Having lived both sides of the equation it is most surprising, to me, when people cannot see that. Occasionally we see a city banning new drive-throughs but that kind of progressive thinking seems to be few and far between. So sad for our future.

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ladyv21454 April 11, 2017 at 12:33 pm

This may work for the OP in his/her small town, but I wouldn’t suggest doing it elsewhere. As Jeanne said, many locales ban pedestrians in the drive-thru area. It’s odd that the bank would think that it would be appropriate to put what appears to be the ONLY outside ATMs right in the drive-thru area – that has to be dangerous. If I really needed to avail myself of the bank’s services, I would take a late lunch and go when the lobby is open.

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Angie April 12, 2017 at 1:35 am

I’m very sure that she doesn’t take a late lunch because she can’t! She noted in the op that both banks close at the noon hour as do most businesses. Since she has to go to the bank walking in the drive though more than once a week, I take it to mean that she works at one of the businesses that close at the noon hour.

Therefore, she wouldn’t be able to go to lunch at a different time because her office closes 12 to 1. I have worked in offices where the office closed 12 to 1 and there is no option to take lunch at a different time.

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Dippy April 11, 2017 at 12:59 pm

what kind of bank closes for lunch? I never heard of such a thing!

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Lady Catford April 11, 2017 at 4:18 pm

For years (as in decades) the bank in my town was only open from 10am to noon,closed, then opened from 1pm to 3pm. If you wanted to cash your every other Thursday pay cheque, you went to the pub.
There was always enough money at the pub. I sometimes wondered why the bank gave the pub enough money to cash the paychecks instead of staying open, but I guess the bank did not want to pay overtime.

When direct deposit came in, the pub had less business, and the bank closed down.

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NostalgicGal April 12, 2017 at 1:55 pm

My hometown bank was similar, though they did have a drive through window that was open at 9 instead of 10. That was mostly for the businesses doing morning bag pickup before open, and so someone could answer the phone for what the Canadian Exchange Rate was to set the % posted in the stores for the day. (we were very close to the border, the grocery store had 4 tills and one was Canadian money only). But yes, you could walk into the lobby only from 10-noon and 1-3 pm. Most of the businesses opened at 10, a few were earlier, and most everything closed down between 5 and 5:30. The grocery store was one of the last ones open. Saturday almost all businesses closed at noon, grocery store and gas stations stayed to regular closing and EVERYTHING except one of the gas stations was closed on Sunday. And the elevator during harvest, would be open weekends and holidays…

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Ty April 11, 2017 at 9:11 pm

It’s a small town thing. I’m from a very small rural town, and *many* businesses close for lunch there. However, in the bigger city I live in now, the thought of closing for lunch would be considered ludicrous by many.

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essie April 12, 2017 at 9:21 am

When I was a child, most of the local businesses (except retail) closed at noon on Wednesdays and Saturdays. Retail shops were generally open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday – Friday and 8 a.m. – noon on Saturdays. Grocery stores were open from 8 a.m. – 6 p.m. Monday – Saturday. The only things open on Sunday were churches and the Emergency Room at the hospital.

I can still hear my grandmother complaining because the department stores changed their hours and didn’t open until 9 a.m. (scandalously lazy, to her way of thinking). When 7-11 first came to town, people looked askance because “decent people” were usually home by 6 and stayed there, unless they had a meeting to attend.

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essie April 11, 2017 at 1:19 pm

Ah, small town life! In a real small town, the teller would have simply told the driver “Joey, don’t make me call your mama.”

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Wild Irish Rose April 12, 2017 at 8:35 am

Ha ha ha! Yeah, I’ve lived in those towns too!

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Karen L April 11, 2017 at 2:11 pm

I’m amazed that the teller refused Mr. Horn & Profanity service. According to stories on NotAlwaysRight.com, a lot of merchants would have given him free stuff to “compensate” him for his “terrible ordeal” and to “keep his business”, thus rewarding his behavior and encouraging more of the same.

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Hallie April 11, 2017 at 3:36 pm

These small towns do still exist and I love living in one. We have 3 banks and yes there is specified horse parking. You may park your horse not only at the bank but at the gas station convience store and at the Walmart in the next town. If you chose to walk up to the teller in the drive thru they would just smile and ask how they can help you. Also…..hang onto your hats, at some of our gas stations you pump BEFORE you pay. (I had a hard time with this one being raised in California). My point is that the rules are different depending on where you live and this op did everything right.

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Rebecca April 12, 2017 at 1:44 am

I’ve only seen one drive through ATM window in the large city where I live, and I have never seen a staffed drive-through banking window. What’s up with that? Is parking at such a premium in your small town that people can’t just park for a second and ALL line up on foot? Seems like a silly concept to me, everyone sitting there idling while they wait in line for the bank.

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Saucygirl April 12, 2017 at 6:03 pm

We have a staffed drive through bank window and yes, parking is at a premium in our small town within a larger city. The bank has a very small lot, that gets illegally used by school parents, as the school is next door and doesn’t have a parking lot. It’s so bad they they actually send letters to the parents the first couple of weeks reminding them the lot is for the bank and cars will be towed. Then the bank has a tow truck on standby, and tow at least one car a day. The only other places to park are paid lots. So a drive through is a necessity for this bank at least, if they want a branch in this area.

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NostalgicGal April 14, 2017 at 3:34 am

This sounds like the cable TV lot when we used to live big urban. It was a major pill to drive into, find parking most of the time, and exit was through a mud/rut alley that was ‘take your life into your own hands’. Though they had opened a kiosk store in a mini-mall on the north end of town, despite that being massively popular, they closed it in a snit after a flood in a substation junction in early September, and they figured it out in December, that they gave about 400 houses premium channels free including HBO and the Winter Olympics… when they restored service after that flood, and were barred by city and state to collect four months of channel upgrade charges because the customers didn’t request that service OR report it. So in spite they closed the convenient and well visited north end kiosk which meant even more traffic through their hideous parking lot (plus several more recurrent complaints so we ended up on satellite TV) …. they were infamous for having the tow place haul your car for $85 minimum if you dared loiter or (deities forbid) you took more than 30 min to do business. (Just barely possible most days if you went ‘off peak hours’ and days before internet…)

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Anon April 12, 2017 at 10:15 am

I have noticed signs at fast food restaurants that state that they will only serve a person if they are in a car, no walk-ups allowed. I think this is rather discriminatory. I used to go to school in a part of Los Angeles with a rather large homeless population. So, during those late hours when only the drive-through is open and not the dining room, they were just not able to get food. Why?? I think the safety aspect is overblown. If a car can manage not to hit the car in front of them, can’t they manage to not hit a person who is standing just behind that car?

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NostalgicGal April 12, 2017 at 1:19 pm

I lived in a big urban area, a block from us was a strip of about a mile of businesses and restaurants (15 restaurants, btw) and just across in the mini-mall at the head of our street, were two fast food places. The chain store burger place said NO WALKUPS and demanded customers be in a car to be served. Behind them in the mini-mall was a small bar, and one night somebody from the bar walked up for food. NOPE must get car. They got in their car, took out the big lit menu stand and order speaker at the (very tight) drive through turn to go along the building, scraped the building, and hit the outside awning pole of the rain overhang at the first window, collapsing that into the drive thru lane. Had they served the guy he might have sobered up or fell asleep in his car, both better outcomes than what happened. Their drive through was closed for five days for repairs.

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NostalgicGal April 12, 2017 at 1:22 pm

Oh, they left that impossibly tight turn when they had the space to straighten that out so someone had a chance of getting through there. Everyone hated it and the employees got a lot of complaints (I worked occasionally at the other front pad restaurant so I knew ALL the crews and yes we talked) about that turn.

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Cat April 12, 2017 at 1:42 pm

The problem may be that, what is a fender-bender for a car, might be major internal injuries for a person. People do hit the car in front of them on occasion. Folks drive right through stores if they hit the gas rather than the brake.

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Tan April 13, 2017 at 7:57 am

“people do hit the car in front of them on occasion”? What? If you can’t pay attention and drive at 10mph without hitting something you should not be allowed behind a wheel as you’re an accident waiting to happen

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Cat April 14, 2017 at 4:33 pm

I agree with you, but the fact is that people do exactly that. One man was talking on his cell phone and hit a freight train-said he didn’t see it. If you can’t see a freight train, you really need glasses.
A bus driver smashed a car stopped at a stop sign and sent the driver to the hospital with severe injuries because he was texting- while driving a city bus in heavy traffic.
Those folks were going a lot faster than 10 mph. The question is-how do we get them off of the road and out of the bank lanes too? They feel even safer at 10 mph, but a pedestrian sure won’t.

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dandj April 13, 2017 at 4:28 pm

It has always been my understanding that the no walk up customers rule servers two purposes. One, it is for the safety of the customers, and to keep liability down. Two, it’s for the safety of the employees. A lot of fast food restaurants keep the drive through open later than the main restaurant and it is a lot easier for someone to try and get through the window if they are on foot rather than in a car.

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NostalgicGal April 14, 2017 at 3:46 am

This is what that one fast food place claimed. Liability plus someone trying to get through the takeout window after hours. I mostly have found that issue to be moot, especially when at the one place (a week before that epic plowing) I had come back from a show, 75 miles to drive so about 1:30 am, with a totally loaded to wallowing car and loaded to capacity trailer, they were the only ones still open in the area, to get some calories. They insisted on a vehicle. I ate breadNbutter sandwiches. (morning my spouse at $10 an hour unloaded the car and trailer. Yes I paid him but that stopped fights–plus he’d actually do as he was told IF he was being paid. Someone we knew often hired him and sometimes hired me for $8 an hour, that day the guy wanted him and DH said ‘no I have a better paying gig’ and told the guy $10 an hour….) Their drive through was open from 1 am to 5 am, and the other hours the lobby was open…

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AM April 12, 2017 at 11:52 am

Drive-thru ATMs are great. Depending on when you go and what you need done, the drive-thru can be quicker than standing in line. Plus, I don’t have to show the teller my ID when I want to withdraw money.

I’ve worked in the food industry. I’ve worked the drive-thru. Often, workers have (or had) a certain amount of time to get through a drive-thru order. That wasn’t the case with counter service. (For example, it was 2-3 minutes for the drive-thru orders. I’ve had managers time us on that. They wouldn’t, however, time us on counter service.)

We have a bank near where I work. The ATM within the bank was taken out because too many homeless people walked in with people using the ATM at night and used that space to sleep. So, your only option was to use the drive-thru ATM, and if you don’t have a car, you pretty much had to go up to the ATM on foot after hours.)

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Jared Bascomb April 19, 2017 at 10:24 pm

Just curious — Don’t banks have exterior walk-up ATMs where you live? Ones that aren’t in a little room isolated from the rest of the bank itself?

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Cat April 12, 2017 at 1:39 pm

My bank does not allow people to walk in the drive-thru for fear some careless driver will make them bank-kill. People who sit in cars waiting for their turn tend to use their cell phones, text, or just not notice a pedestrian.
If your bank allows it, you were fine. I would have worried the person behind you was not playing with a full deck. We had a driver mow down a man in a wheelchair for crossing a street too slow.

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Maria April 12, 2017 at 5:37 pm

Someone is wrong in this scenario bc standing between cars is not safe. I doubt that the bank prefers this odd mode of entry. The LW should contact the higher ups for help. She did nothing wrong, but should not have to risk her life to bank during lunch hour.

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Wendy B April 13, 2017 at 8:30 pm

I don’t know that I would have been so patient. I think I’d have been calling the police. He threatened your life at that point.

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Kay April 16, 2017 at 5:34 am

I never understood not allowing walk through on drive thru lanes if the interior is closed. Not everyone has a car. We ran into this issue as teens with 24 hour drive thrus

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Jared Bascomb April 18, 2017 at 7:22 pm

Am I reading this correctly? “One bank has ATM before the window, one after, and this was the before bank so even if I had wanted to do ATM I would have had to wait until I got up to the ATM (they left no space at all next to it to stand) if I’d wanted to use that instead.”
Both banks use their drive-thru lane for both ATM and human-teller transactions? And you’ve got to queue and wait behind all the people in front of you to complete their transactions (at whichever facility) and move on before/after you’ve completed your transaction?
Maybe I’m just not getting this because I live in an urban area where if drive-thru banking is even available, it’s one lane and usually an ATM.

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Miss Herring April 18, 2017 at 9:54 pm

OP, it sounds like you were in line with your town’s common practice. All I ask is that you start wearing a wide-brimmed hat when you are walking about town! The hot noonday sun isn’t good for anyone’s skin. 🙂

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Darshiva April 20, 2017 at 12:34 am

I used to bank at a place that specifically advertised drive-through, ride-through, or fly-through (they actually had a teller at the local small airport, designed for small planes to use), and they allowed walk-ups, too.

I really loved that bank. Unfortunately, they got bought out by a big national chain, and I lost that small-town friendly feel. I do have access to more ATMs, though, so I can go elsewhere if the one they have set up is not convenient.

The bank really ought to move their ATM, as a lot of people walk up to it, and it sounds sort of dangerous set up the way it is.

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InTheEther April 13, 2017 at 1:09 pm

This is just a personal pet peeve, but I really hate the “but people managed just fine 50 years ago not having X. Nowadays everyone’s lazy” arguement.

Drive-thrus are just convenient. Most of the time the bank/resteraunt/whatever prioritize keeping the drive through lane moving, so it usually is the faster option. You will occasionally get the situation where the drive thru line is long and no one’s inside, but in my experience you can see inside the building to some degree and if that’s the case people park and walk in. Also, since it requires less man power and there’s no/little clean up after customers, many places with drive-thru’s have them open longer hours while the lobby is closed.

Yes, sitting in your car is mind numbing, but so is standing in line inside. At least in my car I get to listen to my own music. You can live without them, same way you can live without automatic washer and dryer, dishwasher, online shopping, etc. that free up a little more of your time so you can do stuff like check etiquettehell. It’s all equally lazy, and also a perk of living in this decade. Unless you’re willing to go completely Amish, I don’t think anyone has a leg to stand on saying “well, people did without this particular modern convenience before it was available, now they’re just lazy.”

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HET April 14, 2017 at 4:53 pm

But the Amish can’t check their email or read E-hell while they wait in line at the bank drive-thru! So businesses should have expedited Amish-only drive thru lanes.

😉 😉 😉

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Jenn50 April 14, 2017 at 7:06 pm

Thank you! We got along ok without a lot of things, but I’m glad to have them now! With a special needs child, I’m very grateful to be able to get cash, coffee, and food without dragging her out of the car every time. It’s not laziness. I do a great deal in the course of a day. Drive-thru enables me to do even more because I don’t lose a giant chunk of my day finding parking, wrestling my daughter out of the car, trying to get her into the store/bank, struggling to complete a transaction one-handed, whilst trying to hold her with me, as she shrieks and flaps, then taking her back to the car and securing her again, backing out, and getting on my way again.

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stacey April 19, 2017 at 3:59 pm

I agree. Moralizing because people do/ do not use a drive-through isn’t doing anything to help the world. The conveniences of modern life cause harms, no doubt (dietary, sedentary, stress), but they also make new things possible. Like banking on your lunch hour with the kids in the car or grabbing a coffee on the way in to work from your favorite shop. Before drive-through was popular, people did go in to stores to shop more and in to banks to do business. But, no doubt the generation that drove in a buggy to town once in a great while to perform their errands had negative views of some modern things as well. I guess my point is that there isn’t a magic year in human history where the combination of “how things are done” resulted in better outcomes for all. Drive-through lanes aren’t inherently evil and walking into a store isn’t inherently good.

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InTheEther April 20, 2017 at 10:18 pm

Just had to add this little example. Way back in the 11th century a Byzantium princess caught all sorts of flack after her marriage and move to Venice for bringing and using forks. Obviously, the use of these strange new things was a sign of excessive decadence and pride. Hadn’t God provided fingers to pick up your food? The fact that she died not too long after was obviously heaven’s judgment for her sinful, fork using ways.

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