KeyMe vs. Professional Key-Cutting Services
You’ve likely seen them in big-box retailers. You might have even used them. Those portable key-copying machines can sure appear convenient and affordable. But are they worth it compared to hiring a professional locksmith?
Let’s compare KeyMe kiosks (and other similar machines) to professional key-cutting services.
KeyMe Pros and Cons
There are thousands of KeyMe kiosks across the country and they’re usually located in the lobbies or front areas of well-known retailers. Convenience is definitely one of the selling points for these machines, but they offer several other advantages:
- Affordable: The company claims it can duplicate car keys “up to 70% less than dealer prices.” Its home and office key services are affordable as well.
- Convenience: In addition to its several locations, these kiosks complete the key-cutting process in minutes.
- Accessibility: You can save and share keys with friends and family via the app.
Although these are great benefits, the kiosks have some disadvantages associated with them:
- Vulnerability: While the app is a great way to share keys, it potentially puts your keys at risk to hackers and thieves who gain access to your phone – who could acquire your address in the same fashion.
- Lack of expert advice: Have questions about copying a key? You’re out of luck at a kiosk or machine, as there is no real-life person running it.
- Credit card only: You can’t use cash or checks; only credit cards are accepted.
- Limited technology: Newer car keys and high-security keys can’t be duplicated at a kiosk. You must go to the dealer or a locksmith instead.
- Other concerns: There are email verifications required for mobile transactions, fingerprints required at the kiosk and your address is temporarily stored at the kiosk until the order has shipped.
Professional Locksmith Pros and Cons
There are also thousands of professional locksmiths across the country, and they’re often in convenient locations as well. Many services are completed quickly, or you can grocery shop and run errands if there is a service that takes longer for some reason. Here are some other advantages a professional locksmith provides:
- Expertise: If you have questions or are looking for multiple solutions, a professional locksmith can give you advice and consultation on your key duplication needs and beyond.
- Security: You don’t have to worry about your address or key information being compromised in the digital space, since you’ll be physically handing your key to the professional locksmith.
- Multiple payment options: You pay via debit card and cash with a professional locksmith giving you more flexibility to pay how you want.
- Advanced services: Even if your key has more advanced technology than a kiosk can duplicate, a professional locksmith may still be able to help. They have state-of-the-art tools and equipment at their disposal.
- Breadth of services: Your locksmith needs are often not limited to key duplication. Working with an actual locksmith vs. kiosk allows you to consolidate your locksmith and key duplication services.
- Human touch: At the end of the day, the human element is important, especially when you’re dealing with something as important as home, car or office security. A professional locksmith can give you peace of mind in ways a kiosk can’t.
The only downside when it comes to professional locksmiths is that the price might be a little higher than what you’d pay at a kiosk. But you still save tremendously when compared to a dealership and you can’t put a price on peace of mind.
If you’re in need of professional key-cutting services, contact the team at A-1 Locksmith today.