When you stay at a hotel in the United States or in certain other countries, tips are generally expected for various services provided. (I personally think the tipping culture in the U.S. is getting out of hand, and that employers should be paying their workers better wages, but that’s another story.) When you receive assistance from hotel staff like bellmen, housekeepers/maids or valets, you need to tip the individuals doing their jobs. The big question for many travelers, or course, is: How much exactly should you be tipping?
The American Hotel & Lodging Association (AHLA), which calls itself “the singular voice representing every segment of the hotel industry,” has a guide to tipping at U.S. hotels. Per One Mile at a Time, it recommends the following tips for hotel employees:
- Hotel courtesy shuttle drivers: $1-2 per person, or $4-5 per party
- Parking attendant: $1-5 when your car is delivered
- Bellstaff: $1-5 per bag when you are escorted to your room, or when you are helped with bags while checking out
- Doorstaff: $1-2 for getting a taxi, and if they help with baggage, tip in proportion to size and weight
- Concierge: $5-10 depending on how involved the service, or a lump sum upon departure
- Housekeeping: $1-5 per night, and it should be left daily and in an envelope, so that it’s obvious it’s a tip
- Delivery of special items: $2 for one item, and $1 for each additional item
- Room service, bartenders, and waiters: 15-20% of the total bill
Of course, tipping etiquette is regional. Expectations regarding tips for hotel employees, and how much to leave them, are different outside the U.S., just as customs around tipping restaurant staff and taxi drivers vary with geography, too. These tools and tips can help you navigate tipping customs wherever you go:
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