What’s that you can hear in the distance? Sleigh bells ringing and carol singing? You wish. It’s the crying, shouting and repetitive Christmas songs that signify the start of the festive frenzy in shops around the country.

For students, it's often necessary to earn some money over the Christmas break. And many students pick up a job in retail to do just that. So why not join us as we grumble our way through the 12 most annoying things about working in a shop during the festive period. 

1. Crazy shifts

Gif. Animated video of Sleepy from Snow White and the 7 Dwarves as he leans on his hand falling asleep

Source: Giphy

When the dreaded Christmas rota is drawn up, all you can do is watch and cry as nearly all of your break vanishes into thin air.

2. Tonnes of New Christmas promotions

Gif. Close up of a man's face while he thinks. Mathematical equations floating in the air around him

Source: Giphy

...that you're definitely not going to remember. You're only human! 

3. Christmas music

Gif. The Grinch putting a pillow over his ears saying "Blast this Christmas music. It's joyful and triumphant"

Source: Giphy

Remember how it was kind of fun when your boss first put on the Christmas CD? Well now you would rather gouge your eyes out with a spoon than listen to that same weird, jazzy cover of Last Christmas again.

4. Mess

Gif. Gordon Ramsay saying "A disgusting, festering mess."

Source: Giphy

Has there been a stampede of wild animals through the store? Well, that's not too much of an exaggeration when you think about the harrassed Christmas shoppers that have been charging around the place for the last few weeks.

5. Crying children

Gif. Steve Carrel in The Office, hunched and saying "Loud noises!"

Source: Giphy

Because the one thing everyone needs in a chaotic, hot and downright unpleasant shop is a misbehaving, screaming child. Better still is more than one misbehaving, screaming child. Said no-one ever.

6. Christmas Eve panic

Gif. Spongebob Squarepants and Patrick running around with their arms in the air in panic

Source: Giphy

People really do lose their heads. And you're just watching it all with a slightly horrified kind of bemusement from behind the tills.

7. Customers asking for advice

Gif. Steve Martin putting his hands to his temples trying to imitate a mind reader and then giving up and shaking his head

Source: Giphy

You're really not sure how that customer expects you to recommend the perfect gift for her 15-year-old grandson based on the unnecessary yet somehow still very vague information she's provided about him...

8. That overly Christmassy colleague

Gif. Elf. Buddy jumping in the air and shouting "Santa!!!"

Source: Giphy

Running around reminding you all to be happy because it's Christmas. You'll be happy once you've managed to escape this chaotic frenzy of panic, frustration and greedy capitalist nonsense. 

9. Stupid lunch breaks

Gif. The Simpsons. Homer sitting in bed with his tummy visibly grumbling

Source: Giphy

*Manager planning everyone's breaks on Christmas Eve* "Lunch at 10:30? Close enough." 

10. Worst customers in the world

Gif. Animated character personifying anger losing his temper, with fire shooting out of his head

Source: Giphy

Why oh why is there always one person slowly wandering around the deserted shop at 5:30 on Christmas Eve? Everyone wants to go home, why aren’t they at home?!

11. Working boxing day

Gif. Man smashing an alarm clock reading 6am with his fist

Source: Giphy

Why? Just why? There's seriously nothing worse than waking up early on Boxing Day morning knowing you have work.

12. Sick of christmas by christmas

Gif. Scrooge in a Muppet's Christmas Carol saying "Humbug"

Source: Giphy

You hate to admit it, but working in a shop makes you a little sick of Christmas before Christmas has even arrived.

That being said, we're sure it's nothing that plenty of pigs in blankets and a little mulled wine can't cure...

So, there you have it! Our 12 Joys of Working in Retail at Christmas. 

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