Planning your wedding’s finances down to the last cent is stressful enough without discovering an unexpected expense after the fact.
Significant to an extreme degree. It’s one of those vast details that some brides neglect: tipping caterers, florists, and other wedding professionals.
You may be wondering if it’s genuinely vital to provide wedding vendors with hints. I understand how daunting it is to consider forking over as much as 25% of your budget on something you feel should be figured out.
Nonetheless, that’s the American way. You should think about tipping the people that helped you with your wedding, even if a service fee is included in the total price.
But how can one determine which sellers warrant various tip amounts? A discussion of this topic is included in my book, The Budget-Savvy Wedding Planner & Organizer.
Even though I’m confident that all future brides will find my book extremely useful, I’m hoping this post will shed some light on the appropriate level of gratuity for the wedding professionals doing the work.
Wedding Vendor Tipping Pointers
- If you receive exceptional service, it is appropriate to leave a tip. It’s up to you to decide case-by-case, as not all vendors count on tips.
- If gratuity may have been included in the price of a contract, double-check the terms.
- Large business owners are not typically expected to get tips (just their employees). However, tipping a small business owner should be done with consideration given to the quality of service you receive.
- Whether or whether you leave a tip, a handwritten letter of gratitude to merchants who have offered exceptional service is always appreciated.
How Much to Tip Wedding Vendors
A gift to the church or temple may be more appropriate than a personal tip if the officiant is a minister or priest. It’s customary to provide a $50 gratuity for those who aren’t clergy.
Professional Photographer / Videographer
Calculating an appropriate gratuity for a wedding photographer or videographer can take time and effort.
No gratuity is warranted if the vendor is also the company’s owner. However, a tip of $100 or more would be greatly appreciated if you feel generous.
Provide a 15-20% gratuity if the wedding photographer is not the company owner but works as part of a bigger team. If one is provided, a $50-$75 tip might be appropriate for assistance.
Caterer and Waitstaff
In many cases, the final price already includes gratuity (or a service fee). If not, a donation of $10-20 per person is appreciated.
When serving at your wedding, waiters and waitresses won’t need gratuities to make ends meet.
Director of Banquets and Catering
If you’re having your wedding in a hotel or other preexisting venue, you might deal with a catering or banquet manager one-on-one. Tips of $250–$500 are appropriate if they are not also functioning as your wedding coordinator.
Makeup and hair styling
The standard salon tip is 20% of the whole bill. If you’re footing the bill for your bridesmaids’ services, you can either include a gratuity in the amount they owe or provide it yourself.
Both your ceremony musicians and your reception band/DJ should know this. Unless otherwise specified in your agreement with the musicians, we recommend a tip of $25-50 per person. Make sure the band’s sound guy is taken care of.
Transportation Professionals, often Known as Chauffeurs or Drivers
Tipping is typically already factored into the quoted price by most transportation services. A fair range to shoot for if it’s not included in your contract is 15% to 20% of the gross cost.
The valet parking tip is the host’s responsibility, regardless of whether or not they are footing the bill for their guests’ vehicles.
Leave a $1 – $2 tip for each vehicle to be shared among the personnel. Please inform your guests that the tip is already included in the price of valet parking by placing a sign in a visible location.
Restroom and Coat Check Attendants
You should expect to spend between $0.50 and $2.00 for every visitor. You want your guests to feel free to throw out single bills all night because they thought you didn’t cover gratuity.
Tips & Alternatives for Wedding Vendors
Although the preceding suggestions are helpful, tipping is not required. A glowing review on Google, Yelp, or Facebook, together with a handwritten note of gratitude, will go a long way with almost any vendor.
You may also be kind to your vendors by allowing them to use photos from your wedding in promotional materials or even submit them for publication on sites like WeddingWire or The Knot. Small presents or gift cards are another options.
Do you tip wedding vendors 20%?
If it still needs to be included in your agreement, a 15% to 20% tip is appropriate. Alternatively, you could tip the cooks and wait for staff between $50 and $100, and the latter $20 to $50, respectively.
Are you supposed to tip your vendors at a wedding?
In many cases, the final price already incorporates gratuity (or a service fee). If you can’t or would like to, a donation of $10-20 per person is very appreciated.
Is it rude not to tip wedding vendors?
Since you are the one who is paying the professional, you should always get your way. Still, a gift or tip would be very appreciated if your team has done exceptional work for you.