FAQs: Holiday Tipping


For today’s FAQ, I’d like to ask you a question: What is the right amount to tip for the holidays?

If you live in New York or maybe any place in America, you’re probably familiar with the old service tradition of giving some kind of gift to all the folks who affect your lives daily with their services–like mail people, doormen or ladies, superintendents, etc.

I think this is a great way to say “thank you” for the holidays. However, I also feel like it’s getting a bit out of hand.

Recently, on my way to work, I was stopped by my lovely mail lady.

With a sweet smile, she approached me to find out how come I only gave her $100 while I gave the UPS man $300. (By the way, they both received the same amount.)

I was so taken aback I had no answer.

Later, I thought of 101 answers I should have said, like for instance, “Well, you can give back your $100 if you’d like.”

I think any holiday gift is just that, A GIFT. They should come from one’s need to say thank you.

This year alone I received the following envelopes with requests for gifts (Can you believe this? They actually sent me a Christmas card with their names and a reminder to give a gift as if I wouldn’t remember):

My home building: 8 names of building porters.

My home: 8 names of different doormen/ladies and 1 mailman.

My office building: 5 names of different building porters. 1 mail delivery lady. 1 UPS delivery guy.

This is not counting the Christmas bonuses for all the folks who work for me which, of course, I gave gladly.

Yes folks, Christmas is a great time for giving. However, how do you decide on the right amount not to offend anyone? Or, should you just buy a present and avoid the most desire present “cash”?

What is your opinion on this subject?