It’s that time of the year when we give cheers, thanks and, yes, tips to those people in our lives who make it just a little bit easier and sweeter.  Tipping is not a requirement but it is definitely a holiday custom.  Although voluntary, you’d be in the shrinking minority if you didn’t tip.   Remember, tips are a very real part of this group’s total income, and a significant way of saying “thank you”.

Now, before we dive into guides and numbers, remember that how much you tip depends on many factors, from the size of the building you live in, the priciness of the address to the actual quality of service, your financial situation, how long you and the staff have been there, etc.  The broad rule of thumb is that the larger the building, the smaller the individual tips (since they add up once you have a few hundred people per building).  Most building staff prefer to receive tips early December but nevertheless, any cash-filled envelope will be appreciated.   Don’t forget, actual gifts, we have found, are always welcomed especially with dependents.

Here are some general averages to consider, split up by those people who take care of your dependents, those who take care of you and those who care for your home.

Nanny: 1 to 2 weeks’ pay
Regular babysitter: $30 – $50
Regular dog walk: 1 week’s pay

Personal services (varies slightly by frequency of service):
Hair stylist: 1/3 to 1 session
Personal trainer: 1 session
Massage therapist: 1 session
Manicurist: 1 session

Super, Resident Manager: $100 – $200
Doorman, Concierge: $60 – $180
Porter, Handyman: $20 – 100
Garage Attendant: $30 – $80
Cleaning person/Housekeeper: 1 to 2 weeks’ pay
Newspaper delivery: $20 – $50