No one likes waiting in checkout lines. But according to new data from Visa, what Americans hate most are the people in front of them who slow the process by fumbling for change or writing checks.

Granted, the Visa survey was conducted among New York shoppers, a group of people not renowned for their patience, but most consumers would rather clean their bathrooms (42%), sit in traffic (20%) or visit the dentist (18%) than stand in line.

Overall, the survey underscored consumers’ frustration with standing in lines — and their desire to make purchases more quickly and easily. The majority cited payment cards as their top choice for "fastest payment method," and, when asked what they would change about waiting in line, 56% said they would add more checkout lines, 14% would create card-payment-only lines and 14% wanted to order or purchase in advance.

When the frustration of waiting in line has gotten to be too much, 32% reported that they have left without purchasing anything and 31% said they had complained to the manager, staff or other customers (only 31% in New York?).

Consumers also reported novel ways of passing the time while in line. In fact, nearly one in five reported making a date while in line.

Not surprisingly, Visa used the data to create a television commercial, "Lunch" (which can be viewed online here) — a good example of research in action.

More here.