NEW YORK (PIX11) — Tis the season to be giving, but surveys are showing that the highest inflation in four decades is undermining the holiday custom of tipping everyone from housekeepers to hair stylists.
It’s the holiday season and many cash-strapped Americans are feeling a little less generous. A recent survey revealed that 17% of Americans are tipping less this year. Etiquette expert Diane Gottsman is seeing a trend of Americans feeling less generous.
“Inflation is a real thing,” she notes, adding, “We are tipping and gifting more cautious because our budgets have changed and relationships have changed.”
Tipping can be notoriously confusing, but there are some tips and tricks to it and details you should know:
Housekeepers top the list with gratuities ranging from a low of $50 to one week’s pay. Apartment building workers range from a low of $15 to $80 for doormen, $15 to $40 for handymen, and $20 to $80 for the superintendent. The recommended tip for your barber or hair stylist is the cost of one visit. And for the person who has the newspaper in front of your door in the morning, tip $10 to $30.
Diane Gottsman of the Protocol School of Texas gave some advice for determining who to tip and just how much.
“You look at your budget number and determine how much you can afford,” Gottsman said. “Number two, consider the relationship you share with the person you’re about to tip, and third look at the service and how often you go. That should determine who you tip and how much.”
Despite inflation, a PIX11 unscientific survey of more than a dozen people on the street found that cash-strapped or not, many people are being generous and even upping the ante.
Patricia Napier Fitzpatrick of the Etiquette School of New York offered advice if you can’t give more.
“The important thing if you can’t give as much as last year is that you write a note, which you should do anyway, to let them know how much you appreciate them,” Napier Fitzpatrick said.
While it is blessed to give more than to receive, it is important to remember that what it really comes down to is what you can afford to give. Besides, it’s the thought that really counts.