Coinstar is one of the most popular coin-cashing machines in the world. So if you’ve got a jar full of spare change and you want to turn it into dollars, those green kiosks are a quick and easy option.
But if you’ve never used one before, or you’re new to an area and not sure where to find a Coinstar machine near you, you can waste a lot of time trying to figure it out yourself.
To help you get cash faster, we’ve gathered info from both official Coinstar websites and other resources and combined them into this guide.
In this article, you’ll learn the quickest way to find a Coinstar near you, tips on using them correctly, plus how to avoid or minimize Coinstar fees.
Don’t miss this article, because we also list some great Coinstar alternatives where you can turn your coins into cash. Let’s get started!
What is Coinstar?
Coinstar is a self-service coin-counting machine that converts your loose change into paper money (cash) or e-gift cards.
It’s an alternative to manually rolling coins and taking them to a bank for deposit or exchange.
Coinstar machines are located worldwide in grocery and convenience stores, pharmacies, discount retailers, and other high-traffic locations.
The company has over 20,000 kiosks around the world, including the United States, Canada, Puerto Rico, and the United Kingdom.
Where is the nearest Coinstar and how to find it?
According to the Coinstar website, 90% of people in the USA can find a Coinstar machine within five miles of their location. There are also Coinstar machines in almost all US states, so there’s a good chance that there’s one near you.
Here are three ways to find your nearest Coinstar:
Use the Coinstar Kiosk Finder
Coinstar’s online kiosk locator makes it easy to find a machine near you.
All you have to do is enter your zip code or street address and it will automatically pull up all the Coinstar locations near you.
Simply click on the “Get Directions” button next to any location listed and it will take you to Google Maps where it will give you turn-by-turn directions from your current location to the Coinstar machine.
Google Coinstar locations near you
Alternatively, Google can also be used to find a Coinstar location.
Enter “Coinstar” followed by your ZIP code or city and state into the search field.
If a Coinstar is in your area, it should appear in the results, along with a link to the nearest location.
Call stores directly to find a Coinstar near you
You can also call your local stores directly to see if they have a Coinstar machine.
If you’re looking for a specific place to get your coins counted, then calling around may be more efficient than searching online, especially if you have a spotty internet connection.
Coinstar Fees: How Much to Change Coins to Cash?
Coinstar currently charges an 11.9% coin processing fee on all cash redemptions at most of its kiosks, but the exact amount can vary across different locations.
For instance, a $100 bag of coins would cost $11.90 if you choose cash, so you would have $88.10 left after paying the fee.
However, it’s free to count your coins using a Coinstar machine, so you don’t need to worry about the fee if you only want to know how much you have in change.
Coinstar paper vouchers are like cash, so they won’t be reissued if they get misplaced or lost after the machine counts them.
The machines also don’t track each transaction. Cash your Coinstar cash vouchers ASAP.
3 Ways to Avoid the 11.9% Coinstar Fee
Coinstar’s 11.9% coin-cashing fee is hefty, but there are some ways to get around paying it:
1. Load your coin value into Coinstar’s No-Fee eGift Cards
Coinstar waives the fees if you choose eGift cards as your payout option.
Select “eGift cards” on the kiosk home screen and choose one of 21 retailers and restaurants, including:
- AMZ Theaters
- Old Navy
- Home Depot
You can transfer the balance to your phone or print out a paper voucher. Both have a unique gift card code printed on the top, which you can use when you shop at the retail store or restaurant or when you’re shopping online.
2. Donate the value of your coins to Coinstar’s charity partners
Coinstar doesn’t charge a fee if you donate your coin value to its non-profit charity partners through its Coins That Count® Charity Program.
It’s easy: Just follow the directions on the screen, select a charity and get your receipt.
Note that these donations are tax-deductible, so keep your vouchers handy until tax season rolls around again!
Some of Coinstar’s supported charities are:
- Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals®
- World Wildlife Fund
- The Humane Society of the United States
- The American Red Cross
- The NAACP (National Association for the Advancement of Colored People)
- Feeding America
- United Way
3. Top up your Amazon balance (using bills)
It’s free to use Coinstar to top up your Amazon balance. Just go to the Coinstar kiosk home screen and select cash services, then type in the phone number you use for your Amazon account.
Next, insert $5 to $500 into the bill receptor. The amount will instantly reflect in your Amazon account and it’s good as cash.
How to Use a Coinstar Machine: Step-by-Step Process
Once you’ve decided whether you want cash, an eGift card, or to donate to a good cause, it’s time to count those coins at Coinstar.
If you’re not familiar with how Coinstar works, it’s like using a vending machine. Don’t worry about sorting your coins beforehand—the machine will do that for you automatically.
Here’s how to use a Coinstar machine:
- Pour your coins into the provided tray, cover them with a plastic lid, and then push the lid into the machine. It takes a couple of minutes for it to count all your coins.
- Check the return tray for any rejected coins. You can try putting them in again, or take them out altogether if they keep getting rejected.
- When the machine finishes counting your change, it will tell you how much money you have in coins.
- Coinstar will prompt you on what type of payout you want: cash, eGift card, or donate to charity.
- Choose your Coinstar payout.
- If you choose cash, it will print out a voucher for you to take to the customer service counter at that store and redeem for cash.
- If you choose an eGift card or donate to charity, then you’ll be prompted on what type of card or charity organization you want.
- Finish the transaction and wait for the machine to print out your voucher.
- Redeem your cash or eGift voucher at the location’s customer service desk.
Which supermarkets have Coinstar coin machines?
Coinstar machines are located in many supermarkets, so you can cash in your coins while you shop. You can usually find Coinstar kiosks at the customer service desk or in the store lobby near the shopping carts.
Note that not all locations offer gift cards, so check with your local store before making a special trip.
Here’s a list of popular supermarket chains and retailers that have Coinstar machines:
Walmart Supercenters usually have Coinstar machines near the customer service counter.
Winco Foods, a large regional food retailer, has Coinstar machines inside some of its stores. However, not all Winco locations have a machine on site.
Contact your local Winco store to determine if they offer the service.
Texas-based H-E-B Grocery Stores offer Coinstar machines inside most of their grocery stores and larger H-E-B Plus! locations.
- Winn Dixie
Winn Dixie Supermarkets has Coinstar machines at most of their locations across the southern U.S., including Florida and Louisiana.
Albertsons grocery stores are located in the Pacific Northwest and Southwestern states, and most locations offer Coinstar machines in their lobbies.
Many CVS Pharmacy locations throughout the country have Coinstar kiosks.
The Kroger family of supermarkets has over 2,655 locations in the United States. Kroger has 24-hour Coinstar kiosks in many of its stores.
When you use a Coinstar kiosk at a Kroger store, you’ll receive a voucher that can be exchanged for cash or used at the register as payment toward your purchase.
You can also add the value of your coins to your Kroger reward card.
- Food for Less
Food 4 Less is a Kroger-owned discount supermarket that offers affordable groceries as well as Coinstar coin-counting machines.
There are more than 100 stores across California, Illinois, Indiana, and other states.
Meijer is a Midwestern chain with nearly 240 stores in Michigan, Illinois, Indiana, Ohio, and Kentucky. It also offers Coinstar machines at some locations outside those states — Indiana and Wisconsin — as well as in Canada.
- Harris Teeter
Harris Teeter is based in Matthews, North Carolina, and operates 227 stores across seven states.
Large Harris Teeter supermarkets have Coinstar Exchange kiosks where you can exchange gift cards for cash.
Hannaford Bros. Co. is part of the Delhaize Group and operates 179 stores throughout Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, Massachusetts, and New York.
Hannaford’s Coinstar machines allow you to exchange vouchers for cash or redeem them as a credit to use during your grocery shopping trip.
Ralph’s is a large grocery chain in California, with over 300 locations across the state. It is a subsidiary of Kroger.
Ralph’s does not have Coinstar machines in every store, but there are hundreds of locations that do offer the service.
As always, call ahead to verify that your particular location has the kiosk.
Safeway is another grocery chain that offers Coinstar coin exchange services. However, it is only available in certain locations.
You can call your local Safeway and ask if they have a Coinstar machine in-store; if so, you will be able to convert your coins into cash or gift cards at any time during their regular business hours.
How to Change Coins to Cash for Free: Coinstar Alternatives
Want cash for your coins but don’t want to pay the Coinstar 11.9% processing fee?
Good news: some banks and credit unions will cash out your coins into bills for free.
First thing’s first: You have to roll your coins.
This is the most time-consuming part of the process, but luckily, banks will usually do this for free if you’re a customer — they just usually require that you roll your own coins.
However, some banks may charge non-customers or require specific coin wrappers before rolling coins for free.
After you’ve rolled all your change, take them to your local bank or credit union to exchange them for bills.
Many financial institutions will give them to you for free if you’re an account holder at their establishment.
If not, call around to local banks and credit unions that offer free coin-to-cash services for non-account holders.
Here’s a quick list of banks and credit unions that offer free coin cashing to their members:
- Westerra Credit Union
- Apple River State Bank
- People’s United Bank
- Hancock County Savings Bank
- First County Bank
- TCF Bank
Finally, some bodegas and small, independent grocery stores may also be willing to give you bills for your coins, so check that out as well.
Coinstar Rejected My Coins: Why and What Can I Do?
Unfortunately, there are a few situations where Coinstar machines will not accept your coins. Here are some:
- Sticky or Dirty Coins
These are coins that have been exposed to moisture or dirt and are now stuck together. If you see a lot of these in your reject bag, try separating them with water and a soft brush before you bring them to Coinstar.
- Capped Coins
These coins have been chipped or broken, leaving a sharp point at the edge. If you notice more than two capped coins in your reject bag, use pliers to carefully smooth out any sharp edges before returning to Coinstar.
- Bent/Crooked Coins
These coins have been bent or scratched so that they no longer meet the required specifications set by the U.S. Mint. If you notice more than two bent or crooked coins in your reject bag, discard them and return to Coinstar with an even mix of straight, circular coins.
- Foreign Coins
Coinstar machines in US locations will only accept legal US coinage and automatically reject foreign currencies.
- Too Many Coins
If you’re trying to cash out a large number of coins worth thousands of dollars, Coinstar recommends that you call their customer service hotline for assistance.
- The Coinstar Machine is Full
A full Coinstar kiosk won’t be able to accept new coins. In this case, go into the store and talk to someone about fixing the issue.
Does Tesco have a Coinstar coin machine?
Yes, you can find Coinstar machines in the UK, including in some Tesco stores.
In the UK, Coinstar charges a 10.9% processing fee when you turn your coins into cash. This means that if you put £100 of coins in the machine, you will get back £89.11.
You can also donate the money to charity. Coinstar charges an 8.9% fee for this option.
Is it free to use Coinstar machines at Walmart?
If you’re looking to simply count your coins, yes.
But if you’re looking to cash your coins in dollar bills, then no, you’ll be charged the usual 11.9% for cash vouchers at Walmart’s Coinstar machines.
However, some Walmarts will waive the Coinstar fee if you use the cash voucher at their store. Always check with your local Walmart for their Coinstar cash-out policies before you go out and try it.
How to Buy Bitcoin at Coinstar
Did you know that you can now buy cryptocurrencies using Coinstar machines?
Specifically, you can buy Bitcoin, USD Coin, Stellar (XLM), and other cryptos with cash at Coinstar through their partnership with Coinme.
How to buy crypto at Coinstar:
- Create a Coinme account and get a free crypto wallet.
- Find a crypto-enabled Coinstar kiosk near you.
- Insert cash into the kiosk and tap “Buy Crypto” on the screen (Coins are not accepted for crypto transactions).
- Get your crypto instantly in your Coinme wallet.
- Some kiosks have daily purchase limits, so check if the amount you’re planning is within those limits.
Coinstar charges a 7% cash exchange fee and a 4% transaction fee on all Coinme crypto transactions.
When you’re looking for a convenient way to turn your coins into dollar bills, Coinstar is a good option. Just be aware of the 11.9% processing fee, which you can avoid by choosing eGift cards or donating to charity.
You can also check if your local credit union or bank offers coin cashing services so you can get the full value of your coins.