(Closed) Tipping? What to do!

posted 6 years ago in Money
Post # 3
624 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: January 2014

Good question, commenting so I can follow!

Post # 4
2295 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: April 2013

The only people I will be tipping is the staff at the salon that is doing hair & makeup. If we were having a limo/driver, then that would be tipped too.

Tip is built in for the bartenders & service staff at the venue. Officiant is a friend and we bought her a really nice gift. No musicians (using a DJ). Day-of Coordinator I MIGHT send a gift after we get back from the honeymoon, as she is charging me a pretty low rate as part of a trade… but I might not. We’ll see.

Post # 5
9954 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: December 2012

As per the Post Institute of Etiquette… and their book “Wedding Etiquette” here is the suggested list…


Fees for Ceremony things are not tips.  But they should be delivered in the same way that you would for tips… so sealed envelope, addressed to each person, and with a personal Thank You Note included.  So… Officiant, Organist, Soloist, etc

TIPS (Regular Service)

* Hair Dresser & Make Up Person

* Valet Parking Attendants

* Coat Check

* Powder Room Attendants

* Delivery Truck Drivers

* Chauffeurs

* Wait Staff

* Bartenders

* Table Captains

Parking Lot Attendants, Coat Check & Powder Room personnel should be tipped AHEAD of time so that one’s Guests have no obligation to do so.  And in doing so, someone needs to make a follow-up check to see that there are NO tip jars, baskets etc. out sitting so that your Guests feel obligated.

For Limousine Drivers and Chauffeurs you can request that the tip amount be included on the Invoice.

Same with Wait Staff, Bartenders etc.  IF however, your Bar is running a tab and you will have to pay up at the end of the night, then you should come prepared to do so (again, sealed envelopes is best)

TIPS (Exceptional Service)

Wedding Professionals such as Bridal Consultants, The Manager, Cake Baker, Caterer, Photographers, Videographers & Florists etc. are ONLY TIPPED IF they provided extra-special service.  Their fee is their payment.

NOTE – Be sure and check all Contracts & Invoices… because in some cases the tips will be written in (ie.  No need to Tip your Wait Staff… IF their tip is written into the Catering Contract)

Hope this helps,

PS… Thank You Notes are a nice touch for your Vendors… especially any that went above and beyond for you.  Be sure and include them when you do your Post Wedding mail-out.

PPS… Heading off on your Honeymoon right from the Reception?  Remember to think about the tips you’ll need to have on hand potentially right away if using a Hotel … Cab Driver or Valet Parking Attendant, Bell Boy, Room Service Person… etc.


Post # 7
2183 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: November 2011 - Florida Aquarium

So, I went willy-nilly and tipped as I saw fit.

My DJ got a tip ($100) because he was awesome. My photographer got a tip ($100) because she was awesome. My hair and makeup girls got tips ($40 each) because it wasn’t their fault my hair/makeup person cancelled on me the morning of my wedding and sent them instead– they did a horrible job, and I made one of them cry because I was crying. I felt bad; they got tips. I would have tipped my baker, but she owns her own business and crashed my middle tier in the van on the way to my venue- and she ran out like a shadow after setting up.

I understand that you’re supposed to tip those who do not own/run their own business. Frankly, we paid so much as it was, we tipped solely on quality of service. And I don’t feel bad about that.


Post # 8
9954 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: December 2012

@riss519:  Re – DJ

Not unless they do something which would be considered exceptional.

I certainly didn’t tip mine any extra (his own business).  Nor did I do so for our Caterer, Cake Baker or the Hall Renter / Coordinator

We did tip out our Wait Staff & Bartenders on the night of our Back Home Reception Party.  The Bartenders got aprox 20% of our “Running Tab / OUR Invoice”… and the Wait Staff a couple of “crisp” bills for their 4 Hours of work.  (Although technically they were paid within our Caterers Contract… but we thought they did and AWESOME Job… and did some extra stuff for us that wasn’t clearly written up therein… so it was only natural to reward them)

Hope this helps,


Post # 9
351 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: February 2013

I have always had issues with this tipping thing….

You are already paying for a service that is supposed to be top notch …. so we are tipping because they made a bigger effort?? Shouldn’t they provide exceptional service regardless? It’s not like their services are cheap either….

Blah, just my opnion 🙂 I can go on and on about this.



Post # 10
1608 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: August 2013

IME, most of the larger venue places will include gratiuties for wait staff, ladies room, bar, etc.  Check your contract carefully.  If you are using an in-house wedding coordinator, you may want to give her $100.   As to DJ’s, photo, etc, if they own their business you do not tip. 

Post # 11
529 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: December 2012

I didn’t go tip crazy as it’s SO easy to. From what I read, you do not need to tip vendors who own the company. I tipped my hair and makeup artists, the driver for our transportation, we gave generous tips ( before reception started) to the bar tenders and to our DJ. Needless to say, drinks were strong, they hustled to minimize waiting and people were feeling no pain. We obviously loved our DJ but we feel he really did a great job, he thanked us for the tip after the reception ended, only one who did. I also tipped our personal server, ( gave the tips to my DOC)

Not sure where you live but I’m in NJ. My biggest issue before our wedding was, how much to tip! My planning book recommended 20% of the cost of the vendor! Insane! Luckily, my DOC gave me a reality check and suggested that 50 $ was a nice, thoughtful tip and 100$ was generous. We gave 50$ per bartender (3 of them) and 100 to DJ. Server got 50$, hair and makeup I just did 20% of my service cost

Post # 12
155 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: September 2015 - The Old Courthouse in Cleveland

wow! excellent info! Keeping this starred!

Post # 13
1491 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: June 2013

@alaskin17:  Right???!   If I’m already paying $$$ for a service, which they’ve yanked up 200% because I mentioned the word “wedding”, then why should I tip extra for them just showing up and doing their job??  


I’ve read the 20% of service price thing and was freaking out a bit…can’t afford to tip 20% on top of an already high service price. I was just thinking about this last night and was like “well I guess I’m going to be the stingy bride who just doesn’t tip”…..  Its good to read that the majority of girls (so far) were tipping nominal amounts, rather than exorbant amounts.  So far, I’m only planning on tipping my officiant and the makeup/hair girls.  Everyone else technically owns their own company or I’m already paying a fee out the wazzoo for them.   

Post # 14
7561 posts
Bumble Beekeeper
  • Wedding: January 2013

Here’s the chart I used – 

Post # 15
548 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: March 2013

Wow – I’m surprised by some of the comments here.  

I’ve seen both arguments for whether the owner of a business should be tipped.  I sort of think that in the grand scheme of things, a tip for someone who owns their own business is a nice way of saying, “You did so well that I feel like your services were worth more than I paid.”

I worked in food service for a bunch of years and one thing I’ve learned is, the tip is not the place to skimp or save money.  If you don’t have the money for the tip, you technically don’t have the money for the service.  

Here is who we’re tipping:

Hair Stylist

Make Up Stylist

DJ (Self- Employed)

Photographer (Self-Employed)

Bridal Attendant

Maitre D’



We don’t have a limo of videographer.


Post # 16
1846 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: June 2013

I will be tipping my MUA and hairstylist, and my limo driver and the driver of the old 1940’s car we have rented (their fee is based on donations, so we can pretty much pay whatever we want). 

I’ll also be tipping my coordinator at the venue because he’s an old friend and he’s given us a lot of freebies/inclusions. 

I think I might be tipping my bartenders too, but not 100% sure. 

I think that’s it.

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