Customer Service

Reader to Reader: How Do You Deal With Chronic Client Tardiness?

Readers respond with customer-friendly ideas like shortening a service or asking a customer to visit another technician. 

I end up doing the client’s nails anyway because I’m not strict. I try to guess when someone is going to be late and work around her. If a client is 15 minutes late, I do her, but she has to wait for an available technician to put the final polish on.

Candy Caruso-Kogos


CC Nails, Etc

Oakbrook Terrace, III.

Our policy is posted. If a client is 10 minutes late, she gets no polish; if she’s 20 minutes late, she has to reschedule.

Chrissy Gilger


For Nails Sake

Murray, Utah

We call everyone the night before their appointment to remind them. For those who are chronically late, say, if they’re consistently late half an hour, we tell them their appointment is at 2:00 when it’s really booked for 2:30. If they do actually come in when they say they will they hang around but that’s rare.

Teresa Menk

Nail Technician

A Nails Etc.

Las Vegas, Nev.

If a client is more than 15 minutes late, she has to reschedule. We have a posted sign of our policy; it warns that if a client cancels less than 24 hours in advance she will be charged for the service. If a client is less than 15 minutes late, we try to accommodate her as long as she is not taking time away from the next appointment.

Dorothy Santiago


John Santiago & Hair People

Key West, Fla.                     

I’ll perform a partial service, for instance, just a polish change, on a late client if I can’t give her, her full scheduled time. When I know a client is chronically late, I’ll book her appointment 15 minutes later than she thinks it is. I discuss with late clients how important it is for them to be on time because they are paying for that time and it messes up the schedule. Only once in a while do I have a client reschedule.

Rosemary Benevento

Nail Technician


Fairfield, Conn.

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