5 perfect ways to show your barista some holiday lovin’ (No…not like that)

They serve your morning pick-me-up practically every day. In fact, they have it ready for you before you even get to the cash register. They give you service with a smile – or they’ll confide in you during their bussing rounds about the crisis causing your beloved muffin’s death by “baristicide”…and then they’ll give you a freebie to make up for it.

They are your Coffice staff. They are your baristas.

They deserve your holiday appreciation and recognition for their hard work and for putting up with that guy in line behind you.

You don’t have to spend a client’s overdue payment for the perfect give. Rest assured, the mere gesture will go very, very far.

Here are some easy gift ideas to consider when showing your barista your holiday spirit.

Gift cards
The endless amounts of gift cards available should make it really easy for you. iTunes covers at least four areas: music, books, movies/TV and apps. So does a gift card from a store like Best Buy or Circuit City. (A word of advice and caution, I’d stay away from gift cards from ANY and ALL coffee- or hot beverage-related establishments. I don’t think I need to explain why.)

Reading material
If you’re a regular at a particular Coffice, there’s a chance you know what your barista likes to read, or what their hobbies/interests are. While a gift card to a bookstore might seem like a good idea, imagine how nice it would be for a barista to realize a customer/Cofficer is actually paying attention to some of the banter and chatter behind the bar. Is your barista a budding photographer? Check out Pilgrimage by Annie Leibovitz and Doris Kearns Goodwin! A die-hard Mac fan? The new Steve Jobs biography.

Long distance calling cards
I’m pretty sure there’s a sappy telco commercial in here somewhere, if it hasn’t been done yet. In most cities and towns across the globe, the person sitting next to you, or the one serving your coffee everyday, knows someone at the end of an expensive long distance call.

I know what you’re thinking: “Today’s rates aren’t all that bad!” or “Hello! Skype!” Who cares? It is the holidays, and people want to call their loved ones; more so if they’re an ocean away. A pre-paid long distance card is a great gift for a hard-working barista. Before you buy one, read the FCC’s consumer fact sheet on prepaid phone cards.

Class passes
No doubt you know by now if your barista practices moksha yoga, dreams of taking up guitar as the next step to their lifelong dream of rock stardom, or aspires to be a great artist or photographer. Passes to sample a new class, or to cover the cost of their favorite hobby/studio/lesson du jour are thoughtful and greatly appreciated. Moreover, there are endless group buying opportunities online or being delivered to your inbox on an hourly basis. This is a great time of year to start paying attention to them instead of hitting the delete or spam button.

Note: This next gift idea could possibly get you free coffee for life…

Foot relief products
I think those three words speak for themselves. But just in case, here’s some math:

Some examples of foot relief products:

Carex Bed Buddy Warming Footies

Conair Foot Bath with Bubbles & Heat

Of course, if your budget is sobbing at the prospect of more holiday spending, a thoughtful gesture might be a modest donation in their name to a charity of someone’s choosing. Heck, even a simple, personalized Merry Christmas or Happy Holidays card to the whole gang at your favorite Coffice would be a nice addition to the store’s bulletin board.

Now go forth and show the holiday barista love! (Again…not like that!)

What’s your plan for your faithful barista this holiday season? How will you show the barista holiday appreciation for all their hard work?

P.S., Happy holidays and an advanced Happy New Year to all Baristas, Cofficers, Coffices and to all your friends and family.

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