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Old 12-05-2012, 11:46 PM   #31
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Free, with an open bar and tons of buffet-type food and dessert items. But, it's at my boss' house (monster of a place) and he invites all his friends and clients too. The place is like a zoo, with a crappy western band "entertaining" everyone, people standing around bragging about what they're doing with all their money (we're a tiny development consultant company, so most of our clients have money coming out their, erm... ears) and getting drunk.

The only reason that Mrs. Tex and I go at all is because my boss' wife makes most of the desserts -- and she's an incredible baker -- and this is where he passes out the Christmas presents. And he expects everyone to be there. Thank God that this year, Mrs. Tex's clinic party is the same night, giving us an excuse to leave early. (We usually just sneak out the back door after about an hour, carrying several bags full of cookies, fudge, etc.)

I've never worked anywhere that didn't do SOMETHING for Christmas, even if was just an office lunch, and that includes the Army. I never heard of anywhere having an actual party, and charging the employees to come to it. I mean, that's gall. Sheesh!!
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Old 12-06-2012, 12:09 AM   #32
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My first "real job" was at a company of about 20 people. They company would rent a beach house every year and we'd have open bar and big jam session and dinner. SO's were welcome and free. It was always a nice time. The 3rd year there the company was undergoing changes so they just had dinner at a crappy restaurant for employees only.

The last company I had a holiday party at was on a wednesday after work, employees only. 2 drink tickets and appetizers.
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Old 12-06-2012, 12:33 AM   #33
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The hubs is a teacher and each year they have to pay to attend their Christmas party. It is held at a restaurant, you get 2 choices for dinner (usually beef or chicken), and it is a set fee (this year is $18/pp). It has always been this way.

When he worked at a bank before this, those parties were free.

I worked for Walmart for about 5 yrs and they would have a party after Christmas with food catered from a local restaurant and served in the break room. It was free and very nice.

I work for another retailer now and there has been no mention of anything Christmasy. When you only have 7-8 employees and you're open 8-10 every day, somebody is going to get left out whenever you have it. How do you make it work with so few employees???
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Old 12-06-2012, 12:59 AM   #34
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Nope, never paid for any Christmas party I attended at work. Now, most of them were pot-luck, so I guess that's a sort of payment, since I had to supply the food I prepared and prepare it. But not outright paying for it.


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Old 12-06-2012, 01:00 AM   #35
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This thread is timely. I work for the government and today was our Christmas party. It's at a restraunt, we pay $29 each, you can bring spouses if you want and you pay for them . It starts at 1, usually winds down at 3 so people just go home getting 2 to 3 hours free off.

I have not gone for the last 4 years. As a single parent (before 2 years ago), I couldn't really afford it at Christmas time and now, well I just don't want to spend my money in that way. Out of 80 people, only about 5 stayed to volunteer to answer phones/counter which is required by law to stay open.

Management will not entertain the idea to give the 4-5 people who stay behind to man the phones/counter 2 hours off another day. I have known this and just lived with it for years. Other agencies I've worked for were grateful that they didn't have to beg another office to babysit the phones so would give the few who stayed bonus time off on another day but not this place. Two new people started a year ago and are going to complain. Actually, I agree with them because management has always said "you elected not to go to the party". My problem with that is that it's not free and there are people who at $29 might need that money for their kids at Christmas. I have been there in previous years. If management paid for the party, then yeah I'd agree, they elected not to go but that's not the case. But, I'm smart enough to keep my mouth shut because any rumbling would cause cancellation of any future parties and 80 coworkers ticked at you is not a good thing. However, these 2 coworkers are going ahead with their complaint.
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Old 12-06-2012, 05:37 AM   #36
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Never had to pay for any holiday parties for myself or DH. This year (first holiday party at this job) my husband's party is going to be at a country club and the party seems like it will be really nice. Kids are invited too and every child will get a gift (heard it was $50 gift cards for teens and for the younger kids they asked for ideas from the parents so the younger ones have an actual wrapped present to open).
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Old 12-06-2012, 06:00 AM   #37
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Free or at most pot luck at everywhere Myself or Dh or one of my parents have ever worked.

Tonight is DH's. They are a small department and it will be just six of us having a nice dinner out

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Old 12-06-2012, 06:46 AM   #38
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We have to pay for ours too, morale has been poor for years and management know why but refuse to do anything about it

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Old 12-06-2012, 08:24 AM   #39
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Was in the Air Force, now work for the AF as a civilian. Never, ever had a free Christmas party. They were either pay as you go or potlucks. Nowadays, usually we do potlucks during the duty day. They're OK.
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Old 12-06-2012, 08:26 AM   #40
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Wow, I'm really surprised how many have to pay for their company parties!

My first job was as a reporter. The newspaper was part of a small chain and the company party involved four nearby papers. Everything was free and the bar was open. Staff only though.
I'm pretty sure the bar tab was HUGE because the editors of each paper initiated a challenge to see which staff could outdrink the others.
(Proud member of the winning paper, lol. I really don't want to think about how much drinking and driving went on that night. )

When working at a church-run day care, we received a free catered lunch during the day.

DH's company had a party for years. SO's invited. Everyone free. Included a sit down dinner, entertainment (which was always pretty good - comedians, magicians, music), drinks, and nice door prizes. That ended in 2009 when the economy tanked. Probably would have looked bad to celebrate laying off 1/3 of their employees in November and putting the rest on rotating work weeks. Since then, they have a catered lunch during the day.

Last edited by indimom; 12-06-2012 at 08:51 AM.
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Old 12-06-2012, 08:37 AM   #41
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Always worked in the private sector. Always had free, lavish parties with open bar. For many years, the bank I worked for had a huge party at the Waldorf-Astoria - a band, dancing, ice sculptures, you name it. It was like a wedding. Those were good times.
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Old 12-06-2012, 08:45 AM   #42
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Originally Posted by spacemountainmom View Post
I've never heard of paying to go to your company Christmas party, but I learn something new all the time.
I had also never heard of paying to go to your employer's Christmas party. I wouldn't go if I had to pay for it., no matter how good the party was.

And lord knows, my current employer's "party" is such a bore, the only reason I go to it is that it's during work time and if you go, then you get 2.5 of paid time off as an additional reward. Yes, they have to bribe people with PTO in order to get them to attend. The "party" consists of a meal at some restaurant (and there have been some baaaaaad restaurants and baaaaad food because they're too cheap to spring for a nice restaurant) and that's it. In addition to which I wouldn't willingly choose to spend any leisure time with my coworkers. Frankly, I wish they'd just give us the money they spend on it as a bonus (especially since we haven't even gotten a COLA in 4 years) or donate it to a charity.
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Old 12-06-2012, 08:48 AM   #43
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At my workplace we've had various holiday celebrations through the years (I've been here 23 of them). When I first started, we got a nice luncheon out of the office at either a restaurant or private room. Then we started catering lunch into our board room. Then we started doing a partial pot-luck with the main dish brought in. The last two years we've had a catered luncheon at a local 'watering hole' in the late afternoon. I didn't attend last year, but I guess it was a hit. The gave a free drink coupon and then if you wanted more, you bought it.
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Old 12-06-2012, 08:57 AM   #44
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My workplace is having two parties - a party just for our department which will be potluck and a catered affair for the entire office staff. Both are free.

My boyfriend's workplace is having a party at a nearby country club. Dinner, open bar, etc. The party is free although we will probably be getting a room at the club so we won't need to drive back into the city that night.
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Old 12-06-2012, 09:01 AM   #45
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At the company I used to work at (and my mom still works at), it was free for most employees. How they ran it was that senior management (director level and up) paid for it. A couple of years ago a couple of the senior managers made a stink and now it's discontinued.
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