IMAG0627 beverage certifiatesHas anyone here stumbled upon any old Starbucks beverage certificates or ancient customer service recovery coupons? I thought this was interesting:

Very recently, a customer walked into a Starbucks and attempted to redeem this certificate:

IMAG0597 Front of the 1987 - 1992 certificateThe partner who took the certificate at the register, hung on to it, and then yesterday she gave it to me! That’s an ancient customer service recovery coupon! Here’s the back side:

IMAG0626 Starbuck 1987 - 1992I would note though, it still looks legit. There is no date on it anywhere. However, that version of the logo on that red certificate was only in use at Starbucks from 1987 – 1992. I had posted this red, complimentary latte certificate on Instagram, and a long-term Starbucks partner commented on it and remembered these. She said there were two versions of these certificates. The red version was for lattes. There was a green version of the same certificate, redeemable only for drip coffee. Remember, this above certificate pre-dates a lot of Starbucks beverages. In 1992, the Frappuccino wasn’t even yet a thing, and you could basically order only a few beverages. It was the era where drinks were only available in whole milk, there was no such thing as a sugar free syrup, and stores didn’t have blenders.

Tonight, I was at a downtown Seattle Starbucks, and the customer immediately behind me in line tried to use these beverage certificates:

IMAG0614 $3 beverage certificateIMAG0612 Front of 3 dollar bev certifThe customer had about five of these $3 drink certificates. Apparently, these were once sold at the registers in booklets of five $3.00 certificates. It’s interesting that they even have an expiration date on them, because I think these days a person has to be able to recover a small amount on a certificate or gift card, in most states. And I don’t think these can expire in most places. I offered the customer cash for two of them. He walked away very happy. He had a little money, a free drink, but no more certificates. The register barista ended up with three of them. And I got two of them, just for fun!

I don’t know what the proper procedure is for these old beverage certificates. I would assume treat them like their face value?

Of course, if you don’t know what a current customer service recovery coupon looks like, here it is:

IMAG0620 Current Customer Service Recovery CouponOver the years, there have been other beverage certificates and customer service recovery coupons out there, which are not shown here. I’m sure every barista has a funny story of customers trying to use an ancient certificate! Feel free to share your story!

If you like these article that throwback to Starbucks of yester-year, click through this category here. My favorite Starbucks history lessons are the story of the Eggnog Latte and the Breakfast Blend Coffee / Milder Dimensions article.