“By no means is holiday tipping mandatory, but giving someone who regularly provides you with a service a little something extra at the end of the year is always appreciated — perhaps more so than ever this year” (Weber, 2020)
Growing up in New York City we had certain regional traditions throughout the year and during the holidays that (in my opinion) are important to carry on.
First and foremost, it was always customary to bring something when visiting someones home. No matter what time of year. Generally we would go to the bakery and arrive with fresh baked goods and pastries. Having traveled a great deal throughout the years, I realize bakeries aren’t really a thing everywhere. Because of this, I suggest a desert from your local grocer.
Beer and wine are always nice gestures – if you are visiting someone who indulges. It wouldn’t be very nice to bring alcohol to someone in recovery.
Side note: (and its sad that I should even have to say this out loud), whether your items are consumed or not during your visit, you should NEVER pack up the leftovers. Unless insisted upon by the person(s) you are visiting. I have seen this first hand, and it really left me with a sour taste in my mouth.
You don’t bring a gift and then take it with you, that is just not classy folks.
Now let’s talk about the holidays.
Every year it was customary to give a little something to our service people. Again, I realize that regionally some of these things differ. In NYC, we had the same trash and mail people for years on end; in Texas, it seems these people change weekly. Anyhow, because of all the little extras they would do for us (taking that extra bag of trash or holding our mail when we weren’t home to get it, etc), my parents always left a card with a small monetary gift for each of them. Some years, finances were worse than others, and my mother might gift them a box of cookies. The point is, we let them know we appreciated all the things they did for us, that they didn’t necessarily have to do.
We let them know they were appreciated and we acknowledged the extra mile they went for us.
Whether its your housekeeper, nail artist, or barber, if you do business with someone on a regular basis, a holiday gift is recommended.
How much to tip?
There are factors to consider.
If you’ve seen the same barber every four weeks for the better part of a decade, you might want to give him or her a larger year-end tip than someone who’s cutting your hair for the very first time.
Consider your relationship, and the extra mile your barber has gone for you.
Do they fit you in outside of working hours when you have an emergency? Do they spend extra time perfecting your hair? Does your barber look past your tardiness on occasion? If you have been with the same barber for a considerable amount of time, they must be doing something that is keeping you coming back.
But finances are tight…
While monetary gifts are always welcomed, you’d be surprised how much just a cup of coffee or a hand written card is also appreciated. Just letting your barber know you are grateful for what they do is always appreciated and is what the season is all about. We tend to take people in our lives for granted (not intentionally). This includes our service people.
Taking the time to say thank you is always important, no matter what time of year it is.