How Much to Tip Hotel Housekeeping and is Tipping Expected? – Survey Data & Etiquette
Tipping is out of control. There are some professions you should never tip, while others are debatable. Hotel housekeeping may be the most confusing one of them all. Our recent survey shows only 39.00% of American adults usually tip housekeepers.
While some tip housekeepers daily, others do not consider it a tipped position. Here are my thoughts.
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I Tip Hotel Housekeeping Out of Obligation
Here is how I view tipping.
- I love tipping for good service.
- I hate tipping out of obligation.
As detailed in my recent How Much to Tip article, I tip housekeeping $5 to $10 every day I get my room cleaned. I leave it daily instead of at the end of my stay since there may be a different housekeeper each day.
I do not like doing it for these reasons.
- Hotels should pay housekeeping staff a living wage.
- A clean room should be included in the bill. If I pay $300 or more for a hotel room, it should include cleaning.
- Cleaning the room is the housekeeper’s job. Why am I tipping for someone doing what they are getting paid to do? No personal service is provided comparable to what a food server or bartender does.
- The room is either clean or it is not. If it is clean, the housekeeper did their job. I should not have to leave extra money for what should be expected.
So, Why Do I Feel Obligated?
I feel obligated to tip because it is expected. Many hotels even leave envelopes for housekeeping tips. Hotels generally do not pay housekeeping a living wage and expect guests to make up for it with tips. I’m aware of the situation, so I tip. While it’s out of obligation, I do it because it’s the only way for housekeeping to earn a living since many hotels refuse to increase wages.
Pros & Cons of Tipping Housekeeping – Should You Tip?
Despite my disdain for tipping housekeeping, I always do it. Here are some pros & cons to help you decide if you should.
Pros of Tipping Housekeeping
- Helps housekeepers earn a living wage.
- It’s a disgusting job. Many people are absolute pigs and leave their bathrooms filthy. Sorry, but it’s true.
- It may lead to better service later in your stay. Though it should not make a difference, maybe housekeeping will put a little extra care into cleaning your room.
Cons of Tipping Housekeeping
- Allows hotels to continue underpaying housekeeping.
- Makes a potentially expensive hotel stay even more expensive.
- Contributes to an already out-of-control tip culture
How Much Should You Tip Housekeeping?
As previously mentioned, I tip $5 to $10 on days I use housekeeping. Many days, I put up the do not disturb sign and tip nothing. Regardless of what I do, use your own judgment. Do not feel bad if you can’t afford to tip housekeeping staff.
Here are a few specific recommendations.
- $1 to $5 per day is fine and appreciated. Even $1 to $5 for the entire stay is acceptable if that’s what you can afford.
- $5 to $10 per day is on the higher end. This is how I tip housekeeping, but you should not feel obligated to leave that much.
- If you can’t afford to tip and feel guilty, just opt out of housekeeping. Put up the do not disturb sign and make your bed yourself every day.
- Consider your room size and number of people. If it is a large room and/or it is especially messy, consider leaving more such as $5 to $10 per day.
- Make sure a housekeeping tip, or “service charge,” is not already included in your bill. For example, my recent Waldorf Astoria Los Cabos Pedregal stay included a daily 15% service charge. This included housekeeping, so leaving more would have been redundant (though I still did because I felt guilty).
How Many People Usually Tip Hotel Housekeeping?
Most people do not regularly tip housekeeping, which does not surprise me. Cleaning should be included in the hotel’s cost. Per our workers Americans usually tip survey, 39.00% usually tip housekeeping.
This is higher than I expected. Though, the percentage could go down in the coming years.
- Only 26.18% of Americans aged 18-29 usually tip hotel housekeepers
- Over 50% of American adults over age 60 say they normally do.
Unless younger Americans buy into the idea that housekeeping deserves tips, fewer people are going to tip in the near future. Will that prompt hotels to pay housekeepers more money? Probably not, but I hope it does.
The Vacationer’s Final Thoughts
I always tip hotel housekeeping and will continue to do so. I hate doing it, and it is out of obligation, but the workers deserve to earn a living wage. Tip what you can. I recommend $1 to $5 for most people; leave a little more if you feel generous.
Featured Photo: Eric Jones / The Vacationer
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