Every year Money Magazine and Consumer Reports conduct surveys on how much people will tip the service professionals in their lives during the holidays. People reported that they would tip people such as their mailman, newspaper carrier, housekeeper, gardener, garbage collector, and others. Call me Scrooge if you like, but I’m not giving a tip to my garbage collector or my mailman this Christmas. I might give some to my housekeeper and my gardener because I really like them, but I actually cannot stand my mailman and newspaper carrier.
How Much People Said They Would Tip
- Mail Carrier – $20
- Hair Dresser – $20
- Garbage Collector – $20
- Gardener – $50
- Housekeeper – $65
One thing that the Money survey did note was that gift giving has stayed the same for most professions despite the recession. People have continued to give tips at the same level for most service professionals for the past several years despite the economic downturn of the past few years.
Why I Do Not Tip
There are very few people in my life that I tip to start with. I tip the guy who cuts my lawn for me, but I don’t tip the lady who cleans my kitchen. But, why would I start tipping the others all of a sudden? How do you even give a tip to your garbage man anyway? Do I tape the envelope to my garbage can? Or, do I mail an extra check to the big corporation that he works for?
I Can’t Stand The Mailman
I refuse to tip my mailman. I cannot stand the quality of service I receive from the U.S. Postal Service, and the price of stamps keeps going up every year. While I know that that is not my mail carrier’s fault, he loses out by default because he works for a horrible branch of the government. But, 39% of Americans in the Consumer Reports surveyed said that they would give their mail carrier a tip. I do not think that people should receive a tip or a Christmas gift just because I do business with them.
Many etiquette experts say that holiday tipping can depend on a number of factors such as: the quality of the service, frequency of the service, how long you have used the service, regional customs, and of course your budget. Instead of tipping my mail carrier and garbage collector this year, I think that I will just save my money and write nice thank you note. I’m sure my garbage man will really appreciate that.
What do you think? Do you agree with me? Do you give a gift to your garbage person or mail man? How much? I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comment section below.
Note: Government workers do not usually accept cash gifts. Many are allowed to accept small gifts though.
(photo credit: Shutterstock)