Holiday tipping guide: How much should you give?

Keep this guide handy to know how to tip this holiday season

The holidays are a time when people often give an extra big tip to show their gratitude to service workers. So, what’s an appropriate amount to tip over Christmas and the New Year holiday?

The folks at have put together a guide to help customers determine how much to tip this holiday season. In it, they offer some hard numbers, as well as general guidelines to make sure you’re being nice, not naughty, this year.

“A holiday tip or gift should be given to anyone you do business with on a regular basis — babysitters, gardeners, hair stylists, mail carriers, pet sitters, housekeepers, etc.,” Aileen Avery, author of “Gift Rap: The History and Art of Gift Giving” and founder of The Art of Gift Giving,” told She added that the point of an added tip is to “show someone they’re appreciated.”

When figuring out if and how much to tip over the holidays, the study suggests looking at four factors: the relationship (how close you are with the recipient), your budget (how much you can afford), their position (their role as a service worker) and your personal preferences (how much you want to show your appreciation).

Here are some holiday tip chart recommendations (via

  • Babysitter: Average day/evening pay for regular sitters and a small gift from your kids
  • Barber: Cost of one session
  • Bartender: $20-$40 for someone you see regularly
  • Day Care or Child Care Center Staff: Small gifts from your kids in the $10-$30 range
  • Fitness Instructor: Cost of one session or a small gift
  • Food Delivery Person: $20-$30 for someone you see regularly
  • Hairdresser or Colorist: Cost of one session
  • Massage Therapist: Cost of one session
  • Pet Sitter: $20-5
  • Postal Worker or Mail Carrier: Food, such as baked goods, or non-cash gift worth less than $20
  • Teacher: Small gift from your kids

For more holiday tipping recommendations, go here.

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