Do you ever wonder if you are over-tipping or under-tipping, or be tipping at all? You are not alone. Lots of people are unsure how much to tip the bell hop or the tour guide. They usually end up tipping way too much or not enough.

Organize Anything has put together a handy chart of industry standards of tipping. We’ve also come up with a few ideas and suggestions on how to gracefully handle leaving a tip.

1) Great service deserves recognition. If you are a patron of a location and appreciate the consistently great service you get, feel free to tip higher than industry standards. Hair stylists, mechanics and your favourite waiter are all people who may expect a inflated tip because you see them on a regular basis and have developed a relationship with them.

2) Being a great tipper doesn’t excuse being a bad customer. People who work in the service industry remember bad customers more than good customers. Just because you leave a hefty tip doesn’t excuse being rude, or a difficult patron. The staff will remember you’re poor behaviour and you may receive less than stellar service the next time you visit.

3) Think about the big picture when tipping. It’s not your server’s fault if your food is overcooked and it’s not your cab driver’s fault if there’s bad traffic. However if your server delivers cold food and is reluctant to take it back, then that should factor into how much of a tip you leave.

4) Not leaving a tip leaves a statement. Many people in the service industry make minimum wage because the companies that hire them expect them to earn the accepted minimum in tips. Not leaving a tip because you don’t feel like it can ruin a server’s shift. It will also get you branded as a bad customer by the staff. This doesn’t mean you should reward bad service though! If you receive truly horrible service mention it to the manager and leave a below minimum standard tip.

5) Here’s a handy chart for some common services and the “industry standard” for tipping:

Job Tip
Mechanic $10-$20 for jobs up to $500, $50 for jobs over $500
Handyman $20-$30 each
Contractors (Foreman) $50
Mover $20-$50 for large, difficult moves. $10-$20 for small moves
Taxi Driver 15-20% of fare
Take Out Delivery $1-2 or $5 for larger orders
Waiter/Waitress 15 – 20% of bill
Bartenders $1 for beer or wine, $2 for mixed drinks
Hair Stylists 15-20% of bill
Massage Therapist 10 – 20% of a one hour massage
Personal Trainer $50
Priest (for Marriage)$75-100
Wedding DJ $25-100

When in doubt about how much to leave, it is standard in North America to leave between 15 and 20 per cent. We hope that these guidelines will help you next time you need to leave a tip.

If you found the information in this article useful and you’d like to share it, please feel free – just be sure to credit us. For more great tips and information on our services visit us at and be sure to follow us on Twitter @organizenow.

©2011 Colette Robicheau
The Organizing Professional
Organize Anything
Phone: (902) 233-1577
Twitter: @organizenow

Author's Bio: 

Colette Robicheau is the founder and president of Organize Anything. She was the first certified professional organizer in Canada. She's also a business consultant with 20+ years of experience.