Give yourself some wiggle room between appts.

Need to sanitize? Maybe take notes? General prep? Cushioning builds in a consistent buffer between your appts.

rectangular appointment blocks tight together with a consistent gap
Cushioning puts a consistent buffer between your clients so you can rest, recharge, and get ready for your next one. Pair cushioning with gapless scheduling to build perfect, zen-like days. (Cushioning is off by default.)
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Doesn’t cushioning defeat the whole purpose of gapless booking?

It can seem that way. But there’s a big difference…

Planned gaps won’t rub you the wrong way because you put them there. You’re in control of them.

This is entirely different than unplanned gaps which other people infuse—unknowingly—into your schedule. (This is why we recommend you keep gapless scheduling on.)

Can’t I just pad my services with some time and be done with it?

Sure. But then you’re not being up front with your clients. They’ll think their appointment is say, an hour, when really it’s 45 minutes plus your 15 minutes of artificial padding.

They might feel like they didn’t get their money’s worth.

This is especially true for services where clients aren’t paying for an end result (e.g. a hair appt), but rather, are paying specifically for your time (e.g. a massage, a music lesson, a therapy session, etc.).

My appointments will start on funky times.

If you’re all about round numbers, you can make sure all your appointment durations are rounded to the nearest 15 or 10 minute marks. Then, if you specify a cushion of 15 minutes or 10 minutes respectively, your times won’t be too funky.

That being said, we recommend to not worry about it.

Funky times (8:10, 3:12, 6:55, etc.) are actually a benefit. They’re more memorable than rounded times. That means your clients will probably be more apt to show up right on the dot.