Post # 1
in my country, tips are not obligatory (e.g. for dinner, it’s great if you round up the bill but no one is going to take offense if you don’t).
my florist and baker are both charging me delivery fees, the location / caterer is charging a 20% service fee. dj and photographer have their tasks lined up in their original contracts.
are we still expected to tip them? and if so, is this an “expected” thing – like tipping at dinner, or because they’ve done something completely over the top and beyond what was agreed upon?
Post # 3
It depends on the person who is giving the tip. Some people feel it’s expected/required in any situation, even if they get bad service. Others feel that it should only be done if the vendor goes above and beyond the call of duty and would never tip them for bad service or simply doing their job. A tip should not be given before you see the final service in action, but yet their “deadline” to be given out is typically before the service is even performed. There are situations where the vendor is great throughout the planning process and then mucks up on the wedding day but they still get a tip for their service during the planning. And vice versa. Do whatever feels right for you.
Post # 4
I did not tip a single vendor and I really saw no reason to. Well I did tip my hairdresser, but he did my highlights and styling for the wedding as a wedding gift so tipping seemed the right thing to do. As for everyone else, I paid for their services or products and saw no reason what-so-ever to tip them. At the reception venue, they added a service charge so I figured that more than covered anything I would have tipped them.
Post # 5
I feel like, if they are charging you a “service charge” that should be the tip. Otherwise, what else is that service charge of 20% (a typical cost of a tip) for?
NYBride09 – while we are on the subject, I think tipping in this country has gotten completely out of hand – it used to be that people tipped before service To Insure Promptness (Get it, TIP), and now people in the service industry get all mad if you don’t tip enough – i’m sorry, there is a recession right now, and it’s kinda your job to bring customers their food, otherwise I’d gladly go get it myself and not have to pay a tip.
Sorry any servors out there, but I have just had more than my share of lousy servors.
Post # 6
I agree that tipping has gotten out of control in the States. It’s also a regional thing — my family in the Midwest tip 10-15% at restaurants, whereas in California it’s 18-20%. I’ve been living abroad for the past 4 years and have gotten out of the habit because it’s not the norm and it’s not expected — at least not to the degree that it is in the U.S.
I would follow the same rule as mentioned above: If a service charge is included, no tip. I may be wrong, but I believe that is a built-in tip that the venue (or whomever) charges to ensure that their staff doesn’t get stiffed for the tip (as that’s the bulk of their salary).
Beyond that, it’s completely service based and I would assess each vendor individually. They have presumably charged you a fair rate for their services so why must you “gift” them with more?
Post # 7
i think if no service charge is included and the vendor goes above and beyond then you should definitely tip, but because you feel that the service is worth it not because you feel obligated (and i’m a wedding vendor) lol!! i don’t think we expect tipping, but it’s always nice if you feel you need to. a great thank you card or a great review on the blog or a facebook page or i even remember a fellow bee bride sending a great bottle of wine and a thank you note. and i thought that was really sweet as well, although cash is always appreciated lol!
Post # 8
wahlstrombjoy and million If you are referring to just a night out to a restaurant I firmly believe that you should tip well due to the fact that your server is generally making well below minimum wage. I am not saying that if they were bad not to tip less but if they did their job on a satisfactory level you should at least give 15 percent. If you can’t afford that then you should not go out to that restaurant in the first place.
On that note I thought this story was cute:http://www.tip20.com/a-nice-tale/81
Post # 9
I’m not opposed to tipping for exceptional service. But I do think that expectations have gotten out of control (tip jars at the counter for taking my cash and handing me change, anyone?), and having jumped off the merry-go-round for a few years has made this all the more obvious.
I understand the position waiters are in (I’ve been there!) and of course I tip because this is the system we’ve got. However, I feel that restaurant owners should pay their staff a fair salary and adjust their prices accordingly. Stop passing the responsibility and the guilt onto the patron to make sure the waitstaff can afford this month’s rent.
As I said, the price you agree to for a service should be it, and tipping should be purely at the customer’s discretion for service and assistance that went above the call of duty.
Post # 10
- Wedding: September 2009 - The 19th Century Club
I think it all depends on your vendors. I love all of my vendors and want to be able to tip them if it makes sense. My photographer, hair/makeup person, coordinator will all be receiving tips. I chose them because they are all amazing at what they do, and I know they will be working hard that day (for example – photographers work HARD and have such long days, plus they spend the most time with you on that day). Basically it’s just a nice way to show appreciation.
My florist and cake person I will not be tipping – while i’m sure they’ll be doing a great job, I don’t feel it’s necessary to tip. And my reception site already builds in gratuity.
My coordinator will, however, have a little bit of money that she’ll be able to dole out to anyone who goes above and beyond that night.
Post # 11
Stiletto, I think that’s a great idea – your coordinator will be paying attention to vendor performance and will be in the perfect position to dole out tips as warranted.
Post # 12
Haha Million, you’re comment about the tip jar next to the cash register really made me laugh! It’s so true. Obviously I understand that you need to tip waiters/waitresses because they made under minimum wage, but everyone else…no. I’m sorry Mr. Starbucks worker that you only get paid $8 an hour or whatever, but I’ve worked crappy jobs where I made very little too and I never expected a tip.
As for wedding vendors the only one I tipped was my makeup artist, because she did a great job and she didn’t charge me when she did the trial. I thought my photographers did a wonderful job, but I also paid a hefty price knowing that I was paying for professional work. Now if I had hired someone for $500 or something and they took photos that rivaled what a $5,000 photog would do then yes, I would have tipped. I feel like when you pay someone a lot of money (waaay above minimum wage) their tip is great reviews online and referrals.
I wish the U.S. would start to do things the European way with tips and taxes already included in the price. It’s so much easier.
Post # 13
My theory of tipping vendors is this: any vendor who owns the business and does the work him/herself (such as my photographer) doesn’t get tipped — they set what they think is a fair price for their labor and talent, and don’t have to pay anyone else out of that (other than their normal overhead). Vendors who use employees (such as my caterer) get tipped because that tip is supposed to go directly to those employees, who have no say in setting prices or structuring the work they have to perform. I’d be very upset, though, if I found that the owner of the catering company took a cut of the gratuity, since that’s not what it’s meant for.
That said, I do wish everything was built into the price so we didn’t have to think about it. The American system is pretty much nonsense, and unfortunately we seem to be stuck with it.
Post # 14
- Wedding: September 2009 - The 19th Century Club
I think sometimes, however, gratuity is just me going a little bit further to say thank you. Having it built in isn’t as meaningful as saying “I want to give you a little something extra.” But it depends on the situation. For my caterer, it makes sense to have it built in because it ensures a certain amount for the staff that is there, and I also won’t get to know the staff very well to feel the urge to give the something extra.
But, I know how hard my photographer will be working that day, she’s because somewhat of a friend and in addition to the day of coordinator, will be spending so much time with us that day. It will make me really happy to give her an extra thank you at the end of the night!
Post # 15
I always tip 20% also, think about it…if your server was making $10 an hour -do you think they’d run their butt off for your 10th free refill or extra dressing? No way. “umm…oh sorry..yeeah I’ll be right on that….and it doesn’t matter because I’m still getting paid.” I’m not saying this is true of every server-but I think it would hold true for a lot of people.
Why would you not want to tip someone who has done an awesome job for you on your big day? I understand it can get expensive…but to me it just seems kind of wrong not to tip your deserving vendors.
Post # 16
<h3 class=”btitle”>Why do vendors get tipped?</h3>
Mostly because the vendor-owners like this system. They can get away with paying their employees less.
Some states even have a lower minimum wage for wait staff. Isn’t that awful!?!