I just bought a Vitamin Water in Grand Central. What are the chances that I'm ever going to need to return this, or prove that I was in Grand Central at 7:45AM today?
I also got one when I used my credit card to pay for my Metro North Ticket. Some people check their credit card receipts against their bill at the end of every month. I don't know a lot about ticket kiosks but I'm pretty sure that whatever transaction processing system they have, it's always going to print the same number it on the receipt that it charged on my card. Plus, if I ever really needed to prove a transaction, that record is on my card...in the cloud somewhere.
Either way, if your time is worth anything whatsover, I'm betting that extensive physical receipt tracking has a negative ROI attached to it.
Plus, how many millions of pounds of paper and ink are we throwing away every year in receipts we don't need? That's what I always think about when I get receipts. I've never in my life used a receipt for anything. I charge most of what I buy on my credit card and pay it off right away (or at least used to before I started a company) and so I have a record in the cloud of my purchases. Could I have been mischarged here and there? Probably, but it might have also been in my favor, so I doubt it amounts to much. I've got better things to worry about.
With all the green things we're supposed to be worried about, who's solving this wasted receipt problem? How about a first step that says that no one gives you a receipt unless you specifically ask for it? Weren't they supposed to be doing that at restaurants with water to conserve? Let's conserve paper and ink and do away with this relic of our analog past.