Holiday Tipping Guide: 2011

Whom to Tip
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Holiday tipping time is here. If you’re looking for advice on how much to give and who should be on your list, we’ve got you covered. We asked expert Diane Gottsman of The Protocol School of Texas for some guidelines. Plus, what to do when you can’t give as much as you’d like. Click ahead to see who gets what.
Photo: Getty Images

Holiday tipping time is here. If you’re looking for advice on how much to give and who should be on your list, we’ve got you covered.

We asked experts including Diane Gottsman of The Protocol School of Texas for some guidelines. Plus, what to do when you can’t give as much as you’d like.

Click ahead to see who gets what.

By Heesun Wee
Posted 18 November 2011

Babysitter/Nanny: One Week’s Pay
Full-time babysitters should get one week’s worth of pay. Babysitters you use less frequently should get one night’s pay. You can also throw in a small gift from the child if you’d like.
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Full-time babysitters should get one week of pay. Babysitters you use less frequently should receive a tip equivalent to the amount of time you use them per week. You can also add a small gift from your child.

Barber/Hair Stylist: One Visit’s Pay
If you’ve been tipping generously after every haircut, there’s no real reason to give them extra cash during the holidays, says Mary Mitchell, author of . Bring in a box of chocolates or some other goodies. Of course, if you’ve been skimping on the tips all year, a cash tip equal to one session is a safe way to go.
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If you see your hairstylist or colorist frequently, tip the equivalent of one service, or whatever you can comfortably afford.

Building Staff: $20 to$100
City dwellers will have to shell out more than their suburb-living counterparts. Doormen should get $50-$100. The same goes for the building handyman, depending on how much you use them. Elevator operators should get between $20-$50.
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From the doorman to the handyman, the tip depends on how much you’ve used them during the past year. City dwellers will likely give more than suburbanites. Elevator operators should get between $20 and $50.

Dog Walker: One Week's Pay
A daily dog walker should get one week's pay, but if the service is less regular, give a tip that equals the amount of one visit.
Photo credit: AP

Offer the equivalent of one week’s service and/or an inexpensive gift.

Landscaper/Gardener: Cost of One Visit
A landscaper should get the cost of one visit, but if a team of people are working on your lawn, give $10-$20 each.
Photo credit: AP

If there’s a team, consider giving $10 to $20 each depending on the service and relationship.

Mail/Package Delivery: Gift
United States Post Office and Fedex workers aren't allowed to accept any cash or gifts. Go with a small gift or gift card worth less than $20.
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United States Post Office workers aren’t allowed to accept cash. Consider a small gift or home-baked treat worth less than $20.

Manicurist: Cost of One Session
Your regular manicurist should get a cash tip equal to the amount of one session.
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The size of the tip depends on how often you use them, and if you visit the same person with each visit.

Massage Therapist: Cost of One Session
If you see the same massage therapist regularly throughout the year, tip them the amount of one visit.
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Tipping factors include how often you go, and if you visit the same professional.

Newspaper Carrier: $10 to $25
If your carrier is getting your paper to you everyday, first thing in the morning, they deserve a $25 tip. If you're only getting newspaper deliveries on the weekend, give $10.
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If you get a newspaper delivered daily, consider $25. If you receive a newspaper less frequently, offer $10 and/or a small gift, depending on the quality of service.

Nurses/Private Caregiver: Gift or One Week’s Pay
If you have a loved one in long-term care at a hospital, give the nursing staff a big food basket to share. A private home-nurse can be given a gift or gift card worth as much as $50.
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A private home nurse, working for an agency, may not be able to accept cash, so check with the agency first, Gottsman said. For nursing home staff, consider a gift such as food that everyone can share and doesn’t favor only one attendant.

Personal Trainer: Cost of One Session
If you’ve been working with a personal trainer for at least six months this year, they should get a tip equal to the cost of one workout session.
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If you’ve worked with a trainer regularly for at least six months, the tip can range from one session to one week of service.

Teacher: Gift/Gift Cards
Before giving anything, check with your child’s school to see if they have some sort of gift-giving policy, says Diane Gottsman, etiquette expert and the owner of . If you can give, experts say to skip on giving cash, as it may look like you’re bribing the teacher for better treatment. Instead, get a coffee or book shop gift card for around $20, or get together with other parents and give one for a larger amount.
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Teachers get their share of body lotions and candles. Be creative and uncover the teacher’s favorite restaurant or shop and offer a gift card accordingly, said etiquette expert Gottsman. And accompany the gift with a handwritten note from your child.

Trash collectors: $10-$20 each
It may mean waking up a bit earlier, but experts say tipping the trash collector is necessary. Anything between $10-$20 for each one is fine, depending on how many trash collectors stop by. If you're living in an apartment building, the management will usually take care of it.
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Different rules may apply for public service workers so check first to be safe.

Housekeeper: One Week’s Pay
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Offer the equivalent of one week's pay, plus a gift if the housekeeper has worked with your family for years.
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Offer the equivalent of one week's pay, plus a gift if the housekeeper has worked with your family for years.