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Tipping Etiquette

Words by Jennifer Stein

Tipping is a method for expressing your appreciation for a job well done.  When planning your wedding budget, it will be important to include gratuities in your calculations.

When planning a destination wedding in locations other than the United States, it is prudent to check with your wedding coordinator in that locale.  Gratuities and customs vary from country to country and knowing expectations prior to the event will help in your budget planning.

General Considerations Regarding Tipping:

1. Check your contracts and final bills ahead of time to see if a gratuity was included.  You don't need to double tip-unless of course, you want to.

2. The host should carry an envelope with cash on the wedding day for unexpected tips.

3.  In general, the owners of businesses do not receive tips.

4.  Guests should not be expected to pay parking lot attendants or coatroom attendants.  This should be arranged in advance so that you can inform your guest with discreetly placed signage.

5.  Wedding planners do not receive gratuities.

6.  If you use a wedding planner they may be the person responsible for dispersing the tips on the wedding day.  If not, be sure to designate someone to handle this detail for you.

Check out the guidelines below for expectations and ranges:

Service provider

Range of tipping

Bartender

10-15% of liquor bill or $25-$50 per bartender

Caterer

15-20% of food and drink bill

Coat & Powder Room Attendants

$1-$2 per guest

DJ or Musicians

optional-$20-$25 each

Florist, Photographer

None

Limousine Driver (s)

15-20% of limo bill if not included in contract

Maitre d'hotel

$1.50-$5.00 per guest

Makeup Artist or Hairstylist

15-20% of fee

Officiant

$100-$200

Parking Attendants

$1 per car

Wait Staff

$10-$20 per staff member

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