End of year, who to tip?

Who to tip at the end of the year?

Who to tip at the end of the year, a form of thank you for the people who help us every day.

Who to tip at the end of the year, a form of thank you for the people who help us every day.

By now, you figured out that tipping in the USA is different from most countries in the world. The customer shows his appreciation of the service rendered. For the ones that serve us on a regular base, there’s a little extra at the end of the year.

Not only people in the tourist industry count on their tips. At the end of the year, we take extra care of some people who made our life better and/or easier every day.  In the days surrounding new years day, we give them a little extra. It’s not so much an obligation as it is a way of saying thank you. In order not to offend the people we interact with every day: here’s a list: who to tip at the end of the year:

We tip:

  • Building staff: the doormen, the “super” of the building, the handyman, the porters: each of them receives a sum between some tens of dollars and some hundreds of dollars, depending on the services they have provided in the past year. In some buildings, the money is collected centrally and divided, in most buildings you’ll give each of them a small envelope. The smarter building teams will have sent you a seasons greetings card at the beginning of December, including the names of all the staff;
  • Do you have the same person cleaning your place on a regular base? (S)he’s entitled to the salary she normally makes in a week;
  • The Au Pair that’s part of your family will get an extra week of salary
  • When you meet your (regular) hairdresser, he or she is expecting the value of a session as an end-of-year tip
  • Your loyal babysitter gets what you normally pay for average evening worth of work (*)
  • The dog-walker (or other animal carers) gets the cost of 1 walk;
  • Your personal fitness coach will  get the price of a session;
  • The paper delivery boy: $5 per month you received the newspaper. With the current subscriptions that deliver only 2 or 3 days per week in stead of 7, adjust as needed.  (If your paper boy is anything like mine, throwing the paper anywhere he fits suitable, EXCEPT where I can get it, feel free to deliver him the tip the same way ;-))
When wondering who to tip at the end of the year, some are entitled to a gift

When wondering who to tip at the end of the year, some are entitled to a gift – Image by Annette Young – Flickr

Some of the people that help us out will not get money in an envelope. We’ll get them a nice present at the end of the year. They include:

  • Babysitters (*) see above.
  • The postman – postwoman cannot accept a tip in cash over a certain amount, so a small gift might be the better way to thank them.
  • The garbage collectors or teachers, depending on where you live. best is to ask around in the area.
  • And, of course, the writer of your NYC blog must not be forgotten ;-)

(*) For these categories, you can choose to give either a gift or a tip.


Did I forget anyone? Please use the comments below (on my blog) to make sure everyone gets what they deserve. I’ll be happy to update the post as a reference.


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One thought on “End of year, who to tip?

  1. Pingback: Things About New York City in December 2014 | Koen Blanquart - Photojournalist

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