Regardless of our economic state of affairs, some things simply do not change. There is this expectation of us to be generous during the holidays to the people who provide us service – and rightfully so.
The question then becomes, who are the folks we should be tipping and what is the appropriate amount? In addition, if we are facing financial challenges, what can we offer in lieu of this?
If you think about it, end-of-the-year gratuities are a way to say thank you to the people we appreciate because they make our lives better, happier or simpler in some fashion.
Etiquette authorities state that there are simple ground rules you follow to help determine how much you should give, such as:
- Quality of service
- Frequency of service
- How long you have used the service
- Regional custom
- Your budget
Now let’s take a look at some of the service providers that may be applicable for you to tip:
- Cleaning Person
- Mail Carrier
- Pet Care Provider
- Sanitation Worker
With respect to how much is appropriate to tip, according to a poll by Consumer Reports, the average starting tip was $15.00 going up to $50.00 based on your history with that person. Here again, if money is tight and you have to be selective, it may help to consider who really needs it the most.
There are other ways to let someone know how much you appreciate them and to say thank you. Sometimes a handwritten note with heartfelt words speaks volumes. Home baked goods are always a sweet treat that people love to receive. Remember, it’s the quality of your acknowledgement that makes a lasting impression.
Tip: When frequenting your favorite restaurant, tipping the wait staff, maitre d’ and bartender are all acceptable. You never know, you just may find your service and table location improves.