You May Need to Swipe Your Driver’s License to Pump Gas

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (May 13, 2014) — Drivers across West Michigan who fill up their tanks at Family Fare gas stations may notice some pumps have new devices mounted on them.

They are called Post-Pay. Customers now have three options when it comes to paying for their gas: pre-pay inside with cash, swipe a debit or credit card at the pump, or swipe your license, allowing you to pay in cash after you pump.

The device protects gas station owners from so-called drive-off’s in which drivers leave without paying for gas. Once the license is swiped, that driver’s information is temporarily stored in a device inside the store, which makes it easier for police to catch people who skip out on paying. Once someone pays, that information is erased, and store owners cannot legally store it, said Meredith Gremel, director of corporate affairs for SpartanNash.

“It’s wiped clean as soon as it gets paid for,” Gremel said.

The post-pay option is available at three Family Fares: one in Holland, one in Wyoming and one in Grand Rapids.

Gremel said the device offers convenience to costumers. “If you don’t know if your car’s going to take $25 or $40, this gives you the option of just saying, ‘OK, I’m gonna fill it up and now I’m gonna go in and pay the amount of the exact gas I wanted,’” Gremel said. “Maybe you have a small child in the car, maybe mobility is an issue, or like we just came off the polar vortex, and you don’t want to make two trips into the store.”

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9 comments

  • wendy

    I still think this is dangerous to easy for the wrong hands to get a hold of your license number and info for identity theft

  • RMIOWA

    Can you say PREPAY cause where I live no one gets to pump gas before paying. Whether it be at the pump via card or at the cashier via card/cash. Problem SOLVED…no need for swiping more private information!
    2 secs · Like

  • Jon Kelley

    What about those of us who have demangetized driver’s licenses? I need to get new debit cards about every 8-9 months, and I don’t even bother to replace my driver’s license (I’m not about to fork over $33 for the damned thing every year, here in CA.)

    It’s always fun when I go somewhere that wants to read my DL – and they can’t.

    It’s the same reason I can’t wear LCD watches (display goes blank) or why I would set off magnetometers walking through them raw naked – with no metal in my body. I actually show up on MAD (Magnetic Anomaly Detector) readings as a small blip…