I remember when I was younger, seeing envelopes taped to the front door around the holidays for people who provided services at our house. Now that I have my own apartment front door to look after, I of course can’t forget about those who are on the receiving end of those envelopes, accepting well-deserved tips during the holiday season.
While the normal “20 percent for good service” is a good rule of thumb when you’re out to dinner, there are different rules (and norms) for holiday tipping.
Who should you tip this holiday season? And how much? Here are some guidelines to holiday tipping.
Postal workers can’t receive cash or any gifts more than $20, which is appropriate during the holidays. Consider gift cards, baked goods or chocolates, as long as the value isn’t above $20.
Cleaning Service Provider
If you have someone who helps keep your home or apartment dust-free, consider tipping the value of one visit. This generally applies to people who come more than once a month, otherwise a 20 percent tip per visit without the additional holiday help is customary.
Newspaper Delivery Person
Because your newspaper delivery person saves you from having to put on real pants in the morning to get your paper, consider giving them between $10 and $20 in an envelope for their early mornings in the snow, sleet and rain.
It’s recommended that each garbage collector receive at least $20. (Now, because I’m in an apartment, I’m not really sure where I’d put this so that they are the ones who receive it. I may have to get a little crafty in the garbage room, or plan an accidental-on-purpose run-in on trash day.)
If your dog walker is keeping your pup happy and fit, consider up to a week’s pay for Fido’s friend.
For the person who helps you stay happy and fit, a tip of $50 or up to the cost of a session is what is customary.
If you see the same hairstylist, manicurist or other beautician regularly, up to one visit’s pay extra around the holidays is recommended. Of course, if you tip well each time you see her during the year, you shouldn’t feel pressure to do this if you’re not comfortable with it.
Apartment Building Staff
Each member of the staff should be tipped $20-$100 depending on how much you used their services. This includes maintenance people, doormen, elevator men and landscaping people.
The Bottom Line
Be thankful around the holidays for the services you receive all year. Whether you’re able to tip or you aren’t, writing a nice note is always the way to go if you’re not sure.
Did we forget someone? Tell us in the comments section!