As stressful as holiday shopping can be on our minds and wallets, it’s the best time of the year to go the extra mile. This doesn’t mean only showing appreciation for your parents, big bro, or boss, either. Whether it’s trash collectors, a beloved lifeguard, or the office parking attendant who gets you to crack a smile before 9am, it’s time to spread good vibes to the people who make your day-to-day life seamless and garbage-juice free.
“People in the service industry go above and beyond the call of duty,” explains Southern California-based etiquette expert Elaine Swann. “They don’t just deliver cookie-cutter services. They’ll stay late, they’ll start early, they throw extra things in. The best way to gauge to whom you should give a gift or tip are the individuals who help make your lives easier throughout the year.”
Swann preaches that “cash is king” if you don’t know your recipient well enough to give them a specific gift, as long as you spend the extra 10 minutes picking out a thoughtful card to deliver with it. But if you’re BFFs with your hairstylist, love catching up with the neighborhood mailman, or want to make sure the dog walker knows you’re aware of how difficult the doggo is, here’s 11 gift ideas for 11 people who thanklessly help you out 365 days a year.