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People Share Their "Random Acts Of Holiday Kindness" Stories

Kindness is everywhere!

The perfect words at the perfect time:

"It was the very end of a horrendous day of travel. Christmas was over, and I had spent the last 18 hours in cars, planes and airports trying to get home from my parents' house. I finally made it back to my neighborhood in Brooklyn, neck pillow around my neck, still hazy from plane meds, dragging my little suitcase behind me and looking thoroughly spent. I trudged past a group of older women who were talking on the sidewalk, as I was literally counting the steps left until I reached my apartment door. One of the women - who I'm sure I'd never met before - stopped me and said, 'Hey! Welcome home!' It was the smallest thing, but it was so nice and well-timed that I almost cried." - Kristin R.

A free ride that makes all the difference:

"Last winter, I was in the train station and trying to go home, but I couldn't find my Metro card. The train was approaching and it was super late at night. The next train wouldn't be by for another 35 minutes and it was so cold in the station. I started to panic because I just wanted to go home and I was too broke to afford a cab. A stranger saw me getting upset and insisted on swiping me in on his card. It was so considerate of him, it made my night." - Kristen B.

A group effort:

"I was living in Chicago, working an office job where I made hardly any money. I was very, very, very poor. A few weeks before Christmas, everyone in the office was chatting about their holiday plans, and I casually told them I'd be staying in town because I couldn't afford to fly home to Phoenix to see my family. About a week later, at the company holiday party, they surprised me with a plane ticket home. And they put me in first class! I found out that a bunch of the sales people in the office (who travel all the time) pooled together some of their frequent flyer miles to buy me a ticket. It takes a lot to render me speechless, but that did it." - Justin T.

The sweetest gesture:

"In college, I worked at a supermarket bakery, and every holiday season one of our daily customers—an older man whose personal uniform was a thick mustache, sunglasses, and a ballcap—would buy candy off the shelf and hand it out to us employees. I stopped by a couple years after I graduated and he still remembered me!" - Tyler S.

The top-secret Secret Santa:

"When I was in high school, someone delivered a gift to my doorstep on Christmas Eve. It was a bag with little toys and candy and stuff, and the card had my name on it, but I had no idea who it was from. It just said "From: Santa". I was a little creeped out, TBH, until I told some of my friends about it, and they were like, "OMG I got the same thing!" It turns out that it happened to all of my friends, so we figured that someone in our group of friends delivered presents to everyone else. But nobody ever figured out which friend it was. I guess that means someone was lying when they said it happened to them, too, because they were actually the ones that did it! This was over 10 years ago, and to this day we still don't know which of our friends was the Secret Santa!" - Carrie S.

The tip that keeps on giving:

"I was in college and working part-time as a hostess at a local restaurant (so of course, I was dirt poor). About a week before Christmas, a customer came in alone, sat by himself in my section and ordered a meal. I was super nice and attentive, because there was hardly anyone else in the cafe and so I didn't have much to do. At the end of the meal he paid and left, and when I went to clear the table I found $250 that he'd left as a tip on his $15 bill, along with a little "Happy Holidays" note on the receipt! I almost cried. Because of that tip, I was able to get some gifts for my family and I even had some money left over to help out with bills. I'll never forget that, and now I try to tip a little extra if I can, especially around the holidays!" - Annie M.

A scrape makes all the difference:

"A few years ago I was preparing to drive from NYC to upstate New York to visit my family for the holidays. It was right after a blizzard had blown through, and it was bitter cold and icey everywhere. While I was packing and preparing to leave, I was already lamenting having to scrape the ice of my windshield and get the snow off the car and everything. When I walked out of my apartment, I realized that some stranger had gone down the street and scraped the windshields of every single car on the block. It was such a small thing, but it really took the stress out of my trip right from the get-go. Such a small but thoughtful little gesture by a complete stranger!" - Mark P.

A Christmas miracle:

"Last summer, the owner of the company I work for sold his business, and he got a HUGE payout for it. It was kind of a small company, but it was bought by a large corporation. In early December, I got called into the boss's office. I was worried. I thought "okay, this is when the layoffs start!" But I didn't get fired! Instead, my boss (who had just gotten a huge payout for selling the company) said that he was really pleased with my work over the past year, that nobody was getting laid off, and that he wanted to share his payout with his employees. He handed me a check right there on the spot for $10,000! I couldn't believe it. I definitely cried. I almost fainted. He did that for every single employee at the company, which was about 40 people. It was totally unnecessary! That was his money that got for selling his company, but how cool is that?! It made for a great Christmas, but it really made my entire year." - Patty M.

A man on a mission:

"When my daughter was about 3 years old, she wanted a very specific toy. Of course, it was the most popular gift that year, and every store was sold out. My husband and I had decided to just give her other stuff instead, but two days before Christmas, my hubby woke up and said, "I'm going to find that toy today." It was like his mission. I told him it was pretty much impossible, but he insisted on it, and headed out to the store. He must've been gone for about 16 hours, because he didn't get back until late that evening. But sure enough, he had the toy! It turns out he had gone to every single toy store in the area, and eventually had to drive to another city (about 100 miles away) to get the last one they had. Honestly, my daughter probably wouldn't have even cared if she hadn't gotten it. She was only three! But her daddy wanted to make sure she got exactly what she wanted for Christmas, and he did just that." - Claudia B.

The neighborhood watch:

"When I was a kid, my family moved into one of those neighborhoods where everyone goes all-out to decorate their houses with Christmas lights. The neighbors were super friendly, and everyone loved competing to see who could do their house up the best. Shortly after we had moved in, my dad was laid off from his job, and he hadn't found another one by the time the holidays rolled around. Christmas was very tight that year, and we didn't have enough money to buy lights or decorations or anything. Then one night we came home, and our house was all lit up with lights! I found out later that the neighbors had all chipped in and decorated our house while we were out for the day. It was the first time I ever saw my dad cry. We had just moved in a few months prior, and it really made us feel like we were part of the community. My parents still live in that same house today, and most of the original neighbors are still there, too!" - Chris S.

Basically the best Santa ever:

"Last winter I was home visiting family. On Christmas Eve, I went to the store with my mom for some last-minute shopping. We saw one of those charity Santas outside, the ones with the bell and the red bucket collecting change. Most of those guys just kinda ring the bell and look bored, but this Santa was waaaaay into it. He was dancing around, talking to kids, singing, saying "Hello!" to everyone who walked by. I don't think he even asked for change or donations or anything, he entire goal was just putting smiles on people's faces. And it worked! He brightened the mood of everyone who saw him, and people were just dumping money into his bucket. To me, it felt like the embodiment of the holiday spirit. He just went above and beyond to make people smile. In hindsight, I think that was probably the real Santa!" - Rachel C.

All images via Getty Images

Have you experienced a random act of holiday kindness? Share your story in the comments below! And get more ideas for spreading holiday cheer from the friendly folks at