Starbucks Barista Stops Making Drink Midway Because Her Shift Ended

By: Alec Donaldson | Last updated: Sep 10, 2023

A simple Starbucks visit took an unexpected turn, making waves online. This unexpected occurrence is the heart of a captivating tale that has many asking: Why?

Well, a Starbucks barista reportedly stopped the preparation of a customer’s drink midway, citing their clock-out time as the reason.

A Shift-End That Caught Everyone Off Guard

In a viral video, TikTok user Mae (@cherry.tomaeto) explains that she was all set for her refresher drink, but ended up having to wait 20 minutes for her order.


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As the barista started making the drink, the clock struck 4pm. The next sequence of events was baffling. With half the drink done, the barista promptly ended her shift. Mae, taken aback, remarked, “She just left it,” pointing to the beverage in question.


Extended Waiting Time for the Customer

The unfinished drink remained at its spot, resulting in an extended wait for Mae. She said, “It took me like 20 minutes to flag down someone else to finish this drink.”


Source: Asael Peña/Unsplash

Eventually, another barista stepped in to complete Mae’s order. This long wait highlighted possible communication gaps between baristas during shift transitions.

Customer's Mixed Feelings on the Incident

Sure, there was initial frustration. But as time ticked by, Mae’s perspective took a 180 turn. “Was I a little pissed?” She mused “Yes. Do I also like high key respect it? Yes.” she confessed with a smile.


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he TikTok community resonated, with one user commenting, “She said ‘AND NOT ONE MINUTE MORE’ and I high key love that for her.”

Online Reactions to the Situation

The incident, when shared, elicited a variety of responses from the online community. One user admitted “I don’t do anything the last couple minutes of my shift so this doesn’t happen,” and one ex-Starbucks employee confessed “I’ve worked at Starbucks (briefly) and I UNDERSTAND,”


Source: Getty Images

Another user speculated the reason why this could have happened, “Some managers are really strict on clocking out time,” they said, before adding, “but she should have told someone.” Mae empathetically added, “That would stress me out so much.”