Experts offer advice on holiday tipping etiquette - WKRN News 2

Experts offer advice on holiday tipping etiquette


KNOXVILLE (WATE) - The busy holiday season means people in the service industry are working extra hard, and many relying on tips to get by. Who should you tip this time of year and how much?

6 News took that question to a hospitality expert, housekeepers, valets, and a hotel and restaurant manager. They all say there are standard tipping procedures in place, but many people just don't know how much, or who to tip for the holidays.

Fifteen to 20 percent is the standard for servers and bartenders, but hotel manager Tracy Hicks says not to forget about the rest of the service industry.

"It's important for everybody to know that 'to insure proper service' is what tip stands for. Prompt service, that's what it was designed for. They are lower paid positions, so they're not even making minimum wage. They're relying on that tip," Hicks said.

Hotel housekeeper Shaquana Wilson says many people don't know or forget to tip her.

"If they tip, thank you. If they don't, still thank you for visiting our hotel," Wilson said.

For valets, Hicks says to tip $2.00 to $5.00 every time you use their service.

Ann Fairhurst, a retail and hospitality professor at the University of Tennessee, says to also remember to tip newspaper carriers, garbage collectors and anyone who helps with your bags while traveling.

"It's people that you really don't tip on a regular basis. So you think of their services and try to do something for them during the holiday season," Fairhurst said.

Fairhurst says one person many people try to tip for the holidays is their mail carrier, but they aren't allowed to take tips. Instead, they can accept small gifts under $20.00. 

A list of general tipping guidelines is available online.

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