Dunkin' Donuts' Penny Sanity Dunkin' Donuts' Courageous Stand Against the Penny (Updated)

A lone doughnut shop is banishing pennies, rounding change to the nearest nickel. Is this savvy business or a frustrated cashier?

Consumerist has found a cashier hero and we want to offer our praise to the rogue Dunkin' Donuts manager who is taking a stand against pennies.

It's rational. It's convenient. It saves zinc (if everyone did it). And Consumerist even makes the case that it's healthy, because pennies are germ magnets.

The real question we hope Consumerist gets to the bottom of is this: Why did this one franchisee decide to take this stand? Were customers really clamoring for it? Was the bank too far to walk for refills? Presumably, because he's a franchise he can't change his prices to round out evenly after tax so he's more vulnerable to pesky penny purchases, but other than that, you'd think a chain store would be the last place to start a bold move against monetary inconvenience. Kudos.

Last year, David Schooley wrote for GOOD with a similar idea, harnessing the spare change left behind by an idea like this for good causes.

I'd love to hear a defense in favor of the penny if you have it.

UPDATED 11-2-2010 3:00 p.m. PT: Intrepid journalism advances the story. Jacob Goldstein at NPR has it from Dunkin' HQ that the store has abandoned the ban after generating much national attention and support.

In an email today, the company told me ... A Dunkin' Donuts franchisee, who introduced a voluntary policy suggesting the elimination of pennies, has since removed the sign based on customer feedback.


Donut lover must like their pennies more than GOOD readers, also Australia, which I've learned from commenters no longer uses pennies at all.

(original post via Freakonomics)

Image (CC) by Flickr user totalAldo.

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