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Apple’s ‘secret’ policy – free repairs for nice customers (allegedly)

A TikTok video from a former Apple Store employee has gone viral for revealing a behind-the-scenes policy that allegedly rewarded politeness with free product fixes.

@Tanicornerstone claims that a secret “surprise and delight” program allowed Genius Bar workers to go above and beyond the normal customer support protocols at their discretion a set number of times each month. That equated to free repairs and replacements for issues that would normally cost money, and reportedly it was most often used to help “really amazing” customers.

“If you’re rude to the geniuses or the concierge people, you will get your problem fixed,” they explain. “Most likely, however, you are going to pay for it.” Not necessarily the case for kind and friendly customers though, who she says would often receive preferential treatment from staff.

Whether or not this policy is still in effect (or whether it definitely existed in the first place) is unclear, but plenty of commenters have added their personal anecdotes about times staff have seemingly gone out of their way to help them. Other ex-employees have also come forward to corroborate the story, although a few detractors say it has been misunderstood and isn’t an official policy.

It seems likely that Apple doesn’t explicitly say to only help “nice” folks – but if staff have a limited allowance for ignoring protocol, it makes sense they wouldn’t choose to waste it on somebody being rude to them. Therefore, in this case, nice guys finish first. Possibly with a free out-of-warranty repair.

The moral of the story? Whether or not you stand to personally benefit from it, always be nice to service staff.