A reader asked us to write about holiday tipping this year to see if we can all pull together what the norm is in the Charlotte market. I have to say, the tips are going to be significantly reduced this year in my household and will be replaced with hand-made gifts when possible.
Baking is always a heartfelt treat as well as lighted wine bottles (see phot0 – my directions will be cuter than this, but you get the picture!). These are so easy to make! You need a recycled green wine bottle (soak in warm water overnight to peel the label off and use Goof Off from Home Depot/Lowe’s to remove any sticky residue). Make sure it’s completely dry. Get a strand of indoor red holiday lights with 50 lights (available at Michael’s – don’t forget your 40% off one item coupon in Sunday paper). Start stuffing lights in making sure the plug is at the top and is long enough to reach an outlet. If you’re really crafty, you can drill a hole in the bottom of the bottle, but that seems like too much work to me and mine look super cute with strand coming out the top! Tie a bow at the top with wire ribbon. Glue a small ornament on the top with hot glue. And voila, you have a beautiful gift! Last year I gave these to my neighbors, mail woman, etc. I’ve been known to stalk my neighbor’s recycling bins this time of year!
Last year, Jen B wrote about the national tipping standard and I don’t think this has changed much. Basically, you just do what you can. That’s the best you can do! Here is what Jen wrote:
“As if you did not have enough family and children to buy for this holiday season, you also need to be thinking about holiday tips. I LOVE the holidays but it’s almost too much to keep up with! Who gets how much? We turned to CNN Money and Kiplingers to find out what they say is appropriate for holiday tipping. (click on link to see their full articles). Here’s what we found:
Babysitter: 1 evenings pay (2 if she is great) + small gift from child
Nanny: up to 1 week’s pay + small gift from child
Daycare provider: $20-70 each + small gift from child (this is in line with what I do at my daycare)
Teachers: Gift or contribute to class gift, see our post from earlier this week
Coaches, tutors, etc: Small gift from child
Housekeeper: 1 week’s pay or more
Trash Collector: $15-20 each (I have never done this, please comment below if you do)
Hairdresser: Cost of 1 cut if you go frequently
Mailman: They are not allowed to take cash but you can do a gift up to $20 value.
Paper Carrier: $15-25 (I make sure to tip mine because he comes down my long driveway!)
Want more info? Try this list from Martha Stewart or a list from the queen bee of etiquette Emily Post.
All of these are national figures, do you think they are high or low? How much do YOU tip in Charlotte? Share your tipping tips!”
I didn’t realize the mailman was unable to accept cash; wonder if you’re “allowed” to give them a gift card to Harris Teeter or something like that????
FYI – totally off topic, but thought I would share that the Britax car seats are on sale again – I just bought 2 onyx Roundabouts on amazon.com and it came out to be 329.99 total (extra discounts and free shipping).
i always give my mailman a gift card to blockbuster. he accepts it every year. other neighbors give cash and it is not a problem.