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The Tipping Point

Last week The Cornbread Show talked about tipping mostly because of the local Pastor who left no tip because she “tips God”.  So that got us talking about tipping in general.  To me, Tipping can be very stressful!  So, I found a guideline to help us all out!  Here ya go!  What are your thoughts?


  1. Food server — Poor service 10 percent, average service 15 percent, and excellent service 20 percent.
  2. Buffet — If the server refills your glass and asks if you need anything, 10 percent.
  3. To-go orders — Use your discretion, up to 10 percent.
  4. Bartender — $1.00 per drink.
  5. Maître d’ — $10.00 for a special request such as a table by the window.
  6. Sommelier — 10 to 20 percent of the wine bill before tax, depending on how much assistance was involved.
  7. Bus boys — Nothing, they will be included in the nights tipping pool.
  8. Coat check — $1.00 per coat.
  9. Valet — $3.00 to $5.00, sometimes more if you are requesting special service like having your car at the curb at a certain time, or keeping it up front until you return. You would tip when you leave the car off, and then again when you pick your car up, another $3.00 to $5.00. If there is a valet fee, you still tip at least $3.00.
  10. Strolling musician — $3.00 for special request.

****When using a coupon, tip 15 to 20 percent of the meal on what the meal would have cost if you would have paid full price, not the discounted price of two for one.

Beauty and Massage:

  1. Hairstylist — 15 to 20 percent of total bill.
  2. Manicurist –15 percent of total bill.
  3. Shampoo attendant — $3.00 to $5.00, more for extra time and services such as a neck massage or if they work on you on a regular basis and you have developed a relationship. Some attendants do more than the stylist — they color, condition, and dry your hair, so you would pay them more.
  4. Massage therapist — 15 to 20 percent of total bill.
  5. Car wash attendant — $5.00 and upwards, depending on the service you requested. He or she is usually splitting it with other attendants.


  1. Coffee shop counter attendant — “If the tip jar is there, you are not obligated to tip; however, if they remember your name and have your drink order written up and started before you walk up to the counter, a tip would be a nice gesture,” says Gottsman. Throw in your extra change or be extra generous and leave a dollar.
  2. Barista — “If you feel like you want to offer something extra, by all means tip, but check the tipping policy of the coffee shop to make sure they can accept,” Gottsman says.
  3. Babysitter — If they are your weekend babysitter, you can pay them their hourly rate. If they do something you feel is over the call of duty, you can always give them more, depending on what you deem fair — there is no standard.
  4. Pizza delivery and other food delivery guys — $3.00 to $4.00, more if they are driving in the snow or have multiple orders of pizza or food. “This is not part of the delivery charge which they do not get,” Gottman says. “They work for tips and have to maintain their car to work as a delivery person.”
  5. When you pick up a “to-go” meal and there is a tip jar — Not mandatory and up to the customer’s discretion.
  6. Car wash attendant — 15 to 20 percent of service.