Did you question how much to tip this holiday season? There are no hard and fast rules on holiday tipping, experts say. How much to tip, or whether to tip at all, depends on several factors, including the quality and frequency of service, the relationship you have with the provider, how long they have worked for you, where you live (since amounts can be higher in large cities), and your budget.
The Emily Post Institute offers the following guidelines for holiday tipping, but also advises consumers to let common sense and the holiday spirit be your guide. If financial circumstances limit what you can give, a handwritten note is always appropriate.
Babysitter – One evening’s pay, plus a small gift from your child(ren)
Barber/Hair stylist – Cost of one haircut or a gift
Child’s teacher – Check the school’s policy. If allowed, give a small token gift of appreciation, not cash
Day care providers – $25 to $70 for each staff member, plus a small gift from your child for providers who give direct care to your child(ren)
Dog walker – One week’s pay or a gift
Pet groomer – Cost of one session or a gift
Personal fitness trainer – Up to the cost of one session
Housekeeper/maid service – Up to one week’s pay or a gift
Doorman – $15 to $80
Garage attendant – $10 to $30
Massage therapist – Up to the cost of one session or a gift
Handyman service – $15 to $40
Yard/garden worker – $20 to $50 per worker
CRS Your Home Newsletter, December 2012