My tip etiquette

My tip etiquette
Extra tip

I’ve loved a discount my whole life but, it’s never at the expense of a service provider who may rely on tips. I try to be mindful of tip etiquette.

Camel attendants get a tip

Camel attendants get a tip

I generally tip 20% for meals, haircuts and any service like that. If someone does an extraordinary job and is extra kind or strikes I chord, I may add a few bucks.  If someone gives our table a free dessert or my toddler boys are a handful, they get a little extra… On occasion, when someone is rude, I tip 15%.

I try to research tip expectations in other countries when I travel. Our guidebook advised us to have money ready to tip bathroom attendants when we landed for our honeymoon in Cairo, Egypt. If you tightly budget, that’s another line item.

When I stay in a hotel, I always leave a few bucks each day for the cleaning staff. The person who brings our bags to the room also gets a few bucks ($1 per item) and anyone who provides a service. Trip Advisor provides more details about domestic travel tips, even for tip jars.

If I use a coupon or GroupOn, I tip on the pre-sale price.

Quick coupon sidebar, be careful to read all the fine print on any coupon before you checkout. I was proud of myself for finding what I thought were $4 haircut coupons for my boys. I was impressed with the enormous TV's everywhere and amazed at the $4 cost, but gave the coupon as soon as we arrived.

The haircut total was still under $20, but not the steal I initially imagined... I paid the amount due and tipped as if it were full price.

You’re stuck with the total after a service such as a haircut even if you misread the fine print and the coupon expired as most places no longer honor them.

Speaking of tip etiquette, Emily Post has these ideas about holiday tips.

My favorite person to tip though is street musicians. People who perform on the Chicago CTA Red Line Grand stop bring me such joy. I usually have a buck or two for them.

What’s your tipping policy?

As part of this week's Blogger Life, ChicagoNow posed the question, "What's your tipping policy," read more.

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