A viral TikTok shows a Starbucks customer waiting in line at the drive-thru for four and a half minutes despite allegedly clear signs showing the coffeehouse was closed.
TikToker Lauren (@laurenkendallm28) posted the video of the customer refusing to leave, captioning it “when customers can’t take a hint…and yes, there was a sign.” After the customer waited for almost five minutes, the employees used the drive-thru’s two-way video screen to share a “We are closed” sign they created via Snapchat with the customer.
Lauren’s video has amassed more than 663,000 views since being posted on Feb. 4. The majority of the comments were from other baristas sharing similar experiences with adamant customers.
“This lady moved our sign and said “’if you’re in there, I don’t know why you can’t make my coffee’,” one wrote.
“My coworker told a lady we were closed once and she started crying… never again,” another commented.
Other alleged baristas asserted customers need to be understanding since many stores are experiencing a staff shortage.
“The customers have been like ‘why are you short-staffed?’” a viewer wrote. “Like they don’t know the world is crazy rn.”
“LITERALLY or we tell them we’re close due to staff shortage and they’re like ‘so you can’t make my drink?’” another commented. “Um, NO. tell me the definition of CLOSED.”
Staff shortages have been sweeping the nation amidst the COVID-19 pandemic. According to a USA Today report published on Jan. 15, Starbucks announced some locations are temporarily scaling back operations due to staffing issues. Workers keep calling in sick as Omicron variant cases spike, impacting the coffee chain’s production. Reducing hours is among the many steps Starbucks said it will take as the globe deals with the third year of the pandemic.
This isn’t the first time a Starbucks customer has been turned away due to the odd closing hours, and it’s likely it won’t be the last.
The Daily Dot has reached out to the creator via TikTok comment.
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*First Published: Feb 20, 2022, 2:01 pm CST
Gisselle Hernandez is a freelance journalist based in Belize, where she writes travel and internet culture pieces. She enjoys watching anime, playing video games, and covering all things TikTok.