My observations is that most Trader Joe's shoppers are yuppyish folks who want to save on their conspicuous consumption. Buying things we don't need, including heavily-processed prepared foods, is not a way to save money.
However, one CAN find great organic produce and packaged grains, beans, and soymilk as what I term "market-bottom" prices (the lowest prices currently available anywhere.A
For instance, fresh raw unsalted almonds for $4.69-$4.99; half gallon soymilk for $2.99; etc.
If you're frugal, avoid the heavily processed prepared foods and look at Trader Joe's as a place to buy what you don't buy judiciously at your increasingly overpriced regular grocers (where SOME comparable items can be far more expensive).
I've noticed that TJs has NO self-checkouts; every checkout requires a checker. Usually they're pretty good; if we watch, we can see that the shoppers themselves are the primary reasons for checkout delays.
I've seen a few novice checkers who see to be inept with bagging and checking; others are much keener.
Very clean, I thought. But again, some of these shoppers need 'mindfulness' practice; they are so self-absorbed and carelessly acquisitive.
Updated from previous review on Monday December 03, 2012
Cons: Checkouts can be slow, No self-serve checkouts, Cars in parking lot are inconsiderate