Tip Chart for Weddings
With so many wedding expenses, gratuities can add up. Included on the tip chart below are the wedding vendors you need to tip. Since some vendors will expect a gratuity and other gratuities will need to be considered on a case-by-case scenario, there are a few things to consider.
Wedding Reception Staff
Should I tip? Oh boy, this one’s the big guy. Yes, you should tip, but make sure a gratuity is not already included in the contract for your wedding.
How much? There are two ways to tip.
Example: The first is to tip as a percentage of the cost of your total catering bill – 15-20%. The second way (which is often more economical), is to tip each staff member individually. If you’re going that route, here is the rule of thumb: Catering Manager, Banquet Manager, Headwaiter, or Maitre D’: $100-$300 or 1-3% of food and beverage fees; Chef: $50-$100; waiters and kitchen staff: $20-$30 each; bartenders: 10% of the total liquor bill (to be split among them) or $20-$25 per bartender.
When? Before you leave the reception.
When you’re already dipping deep into your (or your parents’) savings for so many wedding expenses, allotting room in your budget for gratuities on top of that can be hard to handle. And even though service charges may be spelled out in your contract, tipping—although not mandatory—is always appreciated for a job well done, not to mention a kind and thoughtful gesture.
Traditionally, business owners of larger companies don’t get tipped—just their employees—but you can/should tip an owner when the service exceeds expectations. Small business owners should never be overlooked either, since their businesses are often run by just one person.
Tip vendors who offer exceptional service. Thank-you notes are always appreciated; and assign the responsibility to a trusted deputy such as your wedding planner, a parent or the best man. For a breakdown of what’s customary for each vendor, here’s Southern Weddings handy tip chart for weddings that you can use as a cheat sheet for tipping wedding vendors at your wedding – enjoy!