Does Starbucks Barista Spell Your Name Wrong on Purpose?

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Maybe you have a unique name or a name that can be spelled in many different ways. You show up to get your Starbucks coffee to find your name slightly off. You give them a pass. But sometimes, people get names that aren’t anywhere near what their real name. Could there be something else to it?

So does Starbucks spell your name wrong on purpose? According to a Starbuck’s spokesperson, “We have never directed any of our partners to misspell names of our customers for any reason.” That said, we do believe that many of the misspellings are on purpose to get free marketing for Starbucks.

Starbucks Employee Gives Reason why he Misspells your Name

Check out the video from a Starbuck’s employee here. In the video, he states:

“I’m the one who writes your name in black marker on your Starbucks cup. I probably write around 500 customers’ names every day. Recently it’s come to my attention that people aren’t always satisfied with the names I’ve written. In fact, many people say the names are often wildly inaccurate. They want to know why I can never get it right. Allow me to explain why: I am f***ing with you. I didn’t mishear your name. I’m deliberately misspelling your name to confuse and annoy you. It’s the best part of my job and I will never stop.” 

You and I both know that whenever you get a weird name on your cup, the first thing you want to do is take a picture and post it on social media. Next to that name is the popular green image, free of charge for Starbucks.

After all, how would you explain Reese Witherspoon getting called “Greece” instead of “Reese”. You can see how she noted with a hashtag: “#ItsReeseNotGreece”

Another celebrity that wasn’t even close was Hailey Baldwin (wife to Justin Beiber). She walked out with a cup named “Amy”

Pick Your Own Starbucks Name

Maybe you get your name misspelled at Starbucks but don’t like what they wrote. You may be in luck. You can head over to “What’s My Starbucks Name?” to generate your misspelled name. No purchase necessary 🙂 Here are a few examples:

Order up for Kelly: “Chai Tea Latte for Killy”

starbucks Kelly misspelled as Killy

Order up for Ashley: “Iced Latte for Anny”

starbucks order for Ashley misspelled as Anny

Order up for Billy: “Latte for “Bernie”

starbucks order for Billy misspelled as Bernie

Why Does Starbucks Ask for Your Name?

There are a few reasons that Starbucks asks for your name (even if they spell it wrong) The first reason is that it is easier to remember for most people than a number. The main reason that Starbucks pushes name writing is because it aligns with their core values and customer experience. At many restaurants you are just a number. Starbucks hopes to create a better connection with their customers than just knowing them as a number.

Here is what a Barista had to say on Reddit:

“First of all, it is far easier to remember your name than it is to remember a random string of numbers that changes every visit. And of course, one person often comes in on a coffee run for the whole office, and we are able to label the drinks for the person making it easier to sort for their group, even if it is a bit more writing for us. And if you are like me and often swap numbers (no, grande coffee is not $18.02, I meant to say $2.18, I swear it), your own name is something you probably won’t mistake… even if we spell it wrong. ;p

The second reason is a bit more personal, but I like to decorate the cups on special occasions. On birthdays, I like to write a little note to the recipient and draw a party hat and balloon on the Siren. On Halloween, I draw a witches hat, on Talk Like a Pirate Day, the Siren gets an eye patch and pirate hat… I take the time to do this because it is fun for me, and I have to write the name anyway. If the coffee cup can make my customer smile and enjoy the drink more because it is personalized for them, all the better.

The last reason all comes down to Starbucks’ core value and focus on what we call ‘the customer experience’. We really do emphasize how important and individually unique each customer is. We want customers to come in for the coffee, but come back because they enjoyed the experience as a whole. You don’t generally connect with your McDonald’s worker, but we hope you can connect with your Starbucks barista. We want you to feel welcomed, engaged, and eventually well-known and appreciated. There are tons of coffee shops out there, but we really want you to feel like it is worth it to come to ours. We could call out an order dispassionately and move on to the next person in line, but that goes against everything we value as a company. And even if we’re so swamped we can’t take the time to chat you up and ask how you’ve been, the very least we can do is learn your name and call you by it, because you matter. 🙂

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