49 People Share The Worst Holiday Bonuses They’ve Received That Were Just Straight-Up Insulting

What’s the most exciting part of the holiday season for you? Indulging in grandma’s delicious pumpkin pie, showering your loved ones with gifts they’ll cherish for a lifetime, curling up on the couch to watch your favorite Christmas movies and sip hot chocolate, or perhaps receiving a holiday bonus from your employer?

According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, only about 12% of American employees receive either a year-end or holiday bonus from their bosses, so if you do get one, count your blessings! Unless, of course, your bonus is an expired coupon for a sandwich or a blanket with the corporate logo on it…

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Reddit users have been sharing some of the most insulting holiday bonuses they have ever received, and their employers definitely sound like they should have been on the naughty list. From frozen turkeys that had to sit in the office all day thawing to movie tickets for closed theatres, we’ve gathered some of the worst bonuses (if we can even call them that) down below. Be sure to upvote the responses that make you glad you didn’t receive a bonus at all, and then let us know in the comments if your employers have ever given you a bonus that had you saying, “Bah humbug!” Then, if you’re interested in checking out a Bored Panda article from last year discussing the same topic, you can find that right here!


Ugly blanket with company logo.

A bit later the company sent an email asking for donations to help with hurricane Katrina aid.

The next day an amended email was sent saying they did not need anymore blankets….

Image credits: red_fist


A 5.95 credit for a sandwich

Image credits: Vegetable-Fix-4702


Me and my coworkers were once forced to play a “Christmas game” where we could win gift cards (all bought by the owner of the company).

However she rigged the game to where only she and her sister would win the gift cards. Everyone else got an email from the owner thanking us for our hard work.

I no longer work there.

Image credits: anon


Walmart cut my pay 5% and said I was lucky I did not have to pay the overage back, but I had an opportunity to earn back if I stayed and tried to move up in the company

Image credits: Klutzy_Pianist1782


Two movie theater tickets (like a redeemable gift card thing)… while movie theaters were closed due to COVID. It was a special thanks for being an essential worker.

Image credits: anon


Last year my wife got a roll of toilet paper. With a note taped to it that said we’re on a roll.

Image credits: Typical_Name_2636

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record breaking profits and stock at an all time high no bonus

Image credits: canadianmusician604


Had a boss hand me a certificate that said, get one night FREE, when you rent out my Airbnb for 5 days

Image credits: artgarciasc


A voucher for a free turkey, except it wasn’t valid at any of the grocery chains in our region…the same region where the company was headquartered.

Image credits: LiliTiger


Told I was getting a 10k bonus

Received a $25 grocery store gift card

Image credits: alwaysmilesdeep


A framed photo of me and my coworkers. Half of them would be fired/quit by February

Image credits: Jolly_Celery_9493


A blanket with the company logo on it. Gave it to the homeless man that hung out in front of the shop.

Image credits: honey_biscuits108


A book written by the company’s “Digital Prophet” (yes his actual title) I immediately threw it out. My boss fished it out of my trash and put it on my desk, saying I accidentally tossed my gift. I maintained eye contact as I pushed it right back into the bin.


Got a 100 dollar bonus, and then a letter saying I would be laid off in two months

Image credits: Additional_Doubt


I got a card with a note thanking me for donating my bonus back to the company. I didn’t even get an option, no discussions, and it happened every year. The company was worth hundreds of millions of dollars and we were not struggling at all.

Image credits: Xyain


It was before my time, but the year my former company gave bottled water has been mentioned every year since.

Image credits: Symonie


I worked at a medium sized airline for several years. One year, the CEO ran us into the ground so badly, the company filed for bankruptcy (he still got a $10m bonus)

We used to get a 10% salary bonus around Christmas time, but since the bankruptcy, we were warned that it would be “substantially less”

My bonus that year? A mint taped to a Christmas card that said “thanks a MINT for your hard work.”

Image credits: anon


During 2020 we were working remotely and they gave us a bonus because of covid. Then they made us pay it back over 6 months. The week before Christmas they said we are no longer giving out Christmas bonuses, our 401k contribution is now your bonus. 3 months later I left.

Image credits: Prelude1221


My wife just received a $5 gift card for Starbucks and a note that said “thanks a latte”

Image credits: Alive_Anything4006


We got a 50% off coupon for pizza. Online purchase only. The coupon didn’t work…

Image credits: attley


A head of lettuce. Working produce in small town grocery stores is wild.

Image credits: Nkechinyerembi


I worked at Food City and they gave us gift cards to locals places. It wasnt bad until the manager said “yeah these companies donated them to us at the start of the pandemic to help feed our employees” you know 9 MONTHS EARLIER.


Received company-wide email that everyone was getting a $25 Tim Horton’s gift card. End of day I didn’t get mine do I asked the ceo and she said that email didn’t apply to IT so I wasn’t getting a bonus

I asked why was I sent the email then because that is mean. She just shrugged and walked away. Only one in company not to get the ‘bonus’


A $20 Walmart gift card (I was working st walmart). A company worth more than $400,000,000,000 and I got 20 f*****g dollars. I told my manager to keep it and walked out. That was the last time I ever worked retail. Never again.


A framed picture of the CEO. The frame was made so you could not take the photo out and re-use it.
I put mine in the toilet, pissed on it. Left it there. Less than an hour later, the other 5 toilets has matching picture frames. This went on for several weeks.


2004, America Online. Call center, working tech support. Thanksgiving rolls around and there’s buzz about a $500 bonus coming our way. Checks arrive and they’re all huge, everyone sees a $500 bonus on their check and goes home to enjoy Thanksgiving dinner.

Monday rolls around and 900 employees have an e-mail from HR stating that the bonus was a “mistake” and “the amount will be deducted from your next check”. This was a biweekly gig, meaning that money came out of the Christmas check. My next paycheck was 71 dollars. Happy holidays!


We got a heart pin this year because “we are the heart of the company.” Oh, and told we have to work 5 hours OT each week for the first 3 weeks of January.

Image credits: rapturemeplease


The past two years I’ve gotten a year of Disney plus. I work for a Fortune 500 company with record profits and a CEO that makes Oprah look poor.

Image credits: anon


After thanksgiving, Boss literally came in and praised all of us for a great fiscal year and said each of us would get a $500 bonus, a raise, and the company xmas party was going to be a some fancy bowling place.

Next check was regular pay. The check on the Friday before Xmas didn’t come on that Friday. It was delayed until the next Tuesday, the 23rd and the Xmas bonus was $5. I asked HR about it and they said “well, you know owner, he sometimes b.s.’s a lot”. Ever since that paycheck, the checks got progressively late. When I was fired 8 months later (retaliation for reporting to labor board) I got 3 paychecks at once in cash cause I told them a actual check was not acceptable.


A $5 Tim Horton’s gift card. To make it even [worse], the money to buy the gift cards was was acquired from recycling refunds by one of the kind, older employees collecting, sorting and returning cans and bottles on his own time throughout the year. The owners slipped them into generic Christmas cards and handed them out, thanking everyone for their hard work.


The company hired a Whitesnake cover band to play in our lunch room at work

Forgot to add important context: the drummer was the owner’s grandson

Image credits: senor_purple_butt


Once for Thanksgiving, in my housekeeping job, they hid little paper slips with turkey pictures on them in our rooms we had to find (or get written up because we weren’t cleaning good enough otherwise if we couldn’t find them apparently) and if we all found all our slips we’d get a bonus.

The bonus was a pen.

I didn’t stay long after that


This year. Silicone shot glass, not even with the company logo, just some letters. Two Hershey kisses.

That’s it. It’s also a fortune 500 company and everyone had been working OT since Thanskgiving


I worked as a dog groomer for 6 years. Our Christmas gift, on top of something with a company logo like a small blanket or water bottle, was a coupon for a free nail grind. Which, because I was the groomer, I would be doing… for free.


I got a frozen turkey, they gave it to me at the start of an 8 hour shift with nowhere to store it. I also didn’t have an oven or a freezer at home that it would fit in.


Worked at a pizza place. They made a couple pizzas that we could eat while working on Christmas eve. Customers decided otherwise, we never had the time to stop and eat until closing time.


Worked for a grocery store last year. Company had record profits due to the pandemic buying. Their gift for the essential employees a $10 gift card. While the owner is out buying minor league baseball teams and building a concert venue.


For years, we used to get Christmas baskets. Cheese, sausage, nuts, fruit, etc. Then we went to $100 gift certificates. Now, as the company makes record profits, we get nothing


I’m “head of HR” for a small company. I basically run payroll. Until this year. Boss decides that people need to pay more for their insurance in 2022 and that as “head of HR” I get to write the email letting everyone know.

So my bonus was to inform the entire company about their massive (in some cases > 10%) pay cut next year.


This year my company gave out gas station gift cards for a gas station chain that doesn’t have a store within 2 hours of me


My SO is an OR Nurse. For their bonus this year, they got a $15 Amazon gift card


High tech company with 800 employees. We each got a frozen turkey. Upper management each got six figure bonuses.


A deck of cards with my boss’s face on EVERY SINGLE CARD.


My christmas bonus this year was $10 that was given randomly to 10 people out of 1000. I have yet to receive it.

Oh and a magnet they conned someone into designing that did not get paid for it. Originally they wanted me to design the logo during the “contest” but I purposefully took that week off.


Years ago a company I worked for tried to do employee morale improvements to try (and fail) to make people happy for not getting raises or bonuses for years. Anyway, some of the things were taking the company to a baseball game and dinner, Friday pizza lunches, museum visits. All basically things nobody wanted to do, but did them anyway because the alternative was *work*.

I s**t you not, one of these ideas was bringing somebody in to do 20 minute shoulder massages in the conference room…. Yeah, needless to say a lot of resignations came in the coming months.


A canned ham. Seriously.


A 25 dollar gift card to a place where 25 dollars covers one and a half drinks.


An ugly blanket with a giant picture of the hospital it was from on it.


From my part time school bus driving job. Where “family” is used way to often. They gave us all (this 2021 holiday) a 90s style bomber windbreakers with the company logo.
Source: boredpanda.com

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