A Guide to Tipping Hotel Employees

Hotel housekeeper fluffing pillows

 

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While visiting some of the best resorts and hotels in the world, guests will be greeted with a litany of services, oftentimes before they even arrive at the destination itself.

Although not all accommodations extend services like valet parking, airport shuttles, or luggage porters, many luxury hotels have a full staff of employees dedicated to providing guests with a variety of services.

At these full-service destinations, a team will be there to take care of your every need. From driving you to and from the hotel to giving you a massage, hotel employees typically earn a good living through their work. However, and especially in the United States, it's considered proper etiquette to tip hotel employees for their time and services.

Tipping more or less is at your discretion and should be guided by the quality of service you receive. Otherwise, you can use this tipping guide to give you an idea of the appropriate tipping ranges for each step of your stay.

Transportation Services

Whether you're taking the airport shuttle or you're hiring a personal driver for your transportation to the hotel, you should tip your driver if you've received good service.

  • For courtesy shuttles, you should tip $1-2 per person or $4-5 per party.
  • For taxi or limousine drivers, you should tip 15-20 percent of the total fare.

Lobby Staff

There are many people working in the hotel lobby to help get you settled in as smoothly and quickly as possible.

  • For the doorman or porter, you should tip them $1-2 per bag they help you with. If they're just opening the door, a smile and a thank you is all that's needed.
  • If anyone brings your luggage to your room for you, tip $1-2 per bag. Tip $10-20 if they also prepare your room or give you a tour of the hotel.
  • If you use the hotel concierge, each service should receive a tip depending on the quality of work provided. For simple requests like directions or restaurant recommendations, no tipping is required. However, if the concierge arranges show tickets or books reservations for you, you should tip between $2-5. If they go above and beyond, such as securing front row seats or hard-to-get reservations, you might consider tipping between $10-20.
  • If you need the doorman to call you a cab, you should $1-2 for him doing so—more if he covers you with an umbrella in the rain or has to actually hail a cab from the road for you (rather than signaling one from a cab line). 

Hotel Bars and Restaurants

If your hotel has a few restaurants or bars on the property, you should tip just as you would at any other restaurant or bar. Many restaurants (especially inside hotels) will automatically add a 15 percent service charge for parties of six or more, so check the menu or bill to see if you should leave an additional tip.

  • When having a drink or a bite to eat at the hotel bar or lounge, you should tip your server 10-15 percent of the total tab. 
  • If you're enjoying free drinks in Las Vegas, you should tip $1-2 per round, and it's okay to tip with your chips in lieu of cash.
  • When dining at the hotel restaurant, you should tip your waitstaff 15-20 percent of the bill, excluding expensive wine for which you had the assistance of sommelier or wine steward.
  • If you are eating at a buffet, you can leave a tip of $1-2 per person dining for the server who brings you drinks and takes care of the table.
  • For wine stewards or sommeliers that help you choose a bottle of wine, you should tip 10-20 percent of the price of the bottle. However, if the wine is over $100, you can cap your tip at $20.

Room Service

Room service tips are generally shared by all staff working on the meal, but you can personally hand your server an additional tip. But first, check the menu (or ask the front desk) to see if gratuity has already been added.

  • If gratuity is not included, tip 12-15 percent for room service. You can tip more if the person takes extra care to set up your meal.
  • For special requests and deliveries, like extra pillows or blankets, tip $2 for one item and $1 per item for more than one item.

Housekeeping

You should tip the maids and housekeeping staff each day you stay in the hotel (as well as when you check out). It's best to do your tipping daily since you might have different people cleaning your room from day to day. If you don't want to leave a tip, you can put the "Do Not Disturb" sign on your door, which will stop them from attending your room.

  • Depending on the level of services and the price of accommodations you're staying in, you should tip between $1-10 per night.

Repairmen

If something breaks in your room and a maintenance or repair technician has to come to fix it, you do not need to tip that person for their services. Their payment is covered entirely by the hotel.

Spas and Salons

Some hotels might have a salon or spa where guests and non-guests alike can book beauty treatments. Tipping practices here are the same as any spa or salon located off hotel property.

  • At the hotel hair salon, tip 15 percent of the total bill for your stylist. If someone else washes your hair, you can tip them $2-5.
  • If you get your nails done, tip your manicurist 15 percent of your total bill.
  • For a massage or any other spa service, like facials or body scrubs, you should tip 10-20 percent of your total bill.
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