Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
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altruistic vending machine

Pay for the next person
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You get a free cup of coffee or drink of cold water, and choose AFTER you get the water to pay for the next person or people, with a suggested price.

Gives you a good feeling your doing a good thing, and most people will pay. Above all, its tax free, because your a non-profit, but at the same time helping out the public and removing a burden from the gvmnt.

pashute, Oct 28 2012

Article on this very concept http://www.news.com...szs56-1226505355373
I like the 'pouring it forward' description for coffee. [AusCan531, Oct 29 2012]

parking meter fairy http://www.youtube....watch?v=IKTFCdpBsAA
[xandram, Oct 29 2012]

[link]






       Oh! And your allowed to put your vending machine in the train station, because your a non-profit benefiting the public.
pashute, Oct 28 2012
  

       But if the next person will also get a free cup, where is the incentive for me to pay?
pocmloc, Oct 28 2012
  

       //because your a non-profit//   

       gr, "because of your non-profit [organization]"
FlyingToaster, Oct 28 2012
  

       // But if the next person will also get a free cup, where is the incentive for me to pay? //   

       BIOT, this sort of thing works... sometimes. In a town about twenty miles NW of mine (which is damn near Canada), there's a place called 'the honor store' (it's actually called something else, but nobody calls it that). It's basically a general store where nothing has a price-- you pay whatever you think something is worth.   

       You there, in the back, I can hear that incredulous snickering.   

       Now, on to the point: not only does this concept work, but it works so well that a tradition of 'paying for the next guy' has sprung up among regular patrons, wherein beside the dish that you put your money in when you leave is another that you put money in for other people to use when they think whatever they wish to purchase is worth more than they have in their wallets. It is a truly amazing phenomena that visitors to the area are seemingly incapable of understanding, leading them to grossly overpay for their purchases and still throw money into the second dish lest they be tarred and feathered for their lack of generosity, even after having the whole system patiently explained to them in toothless Quebecois by the affable mustachioed store owner.
Alterother, Oct 29 2012
  

       I've considered just asking people to pay what they think my services are worth because they are often surprised at how cheap i am. However, i also wonder if the pleasant surprise makes for good word of mouth.
nineteenthly, Oct 29 2012
  

       That's a great example, [AO], but subtly different psychology. There you pay what you think it is worth, which may also include a help for the next person. Here you pay for the next person only after you have received free goods.   

       [19] I once tried it (merchandise after after a presentation) but people just looked confused and slightly offended, and they significantly underpaid. It depends I suppose on having a culture of expecting it and doing it. Might work better in your field.
pocmloc, Oct 29 2012
  

       There are people who do this at toll booths. Paying for the person behind you makes you feel like you are doing a nice thing. This also insures that the prices are the same, so if everyone follows suit, we are all just paying the toll but being nice.   

       There is a group of people who go around paying expired parking meters,too. I will look for a link.
xandram, Oct 29 2012
  

       there are states where paying expired parking meters can land one in jail, believe it or not.
sqeaketh the wheel, Oct 29 2012
  

       Very Nice, but...   

       I get to *many* free purchases but pay for just for purchase of next guy ?
VJW, Oct 31 2012
  
      
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