Business Travel – Tipping |

Do you give tips when you travel? Do you tip generously, or are you as stingy as a scrooge when it comes to passing a few bucks to other hands for service rendered?

While tipping is not really necessary or required, it has become a general practice when traveling, and does put a little grease to help you get the service you need faster than usual. It is also a way of showing that you appreciate the service rendered to you. Because tipping is just that: a way of saying “Thank you” to the valet who parked your car, to the guy who drove you from the airport to the hotel, to the bellhop who carried your bags for you to your room, to the maid who puts your room to order everyday, to the people who make your stay more pleasant. It does not add much to their salary, or pay their mortgage or health care, but it does give a lift one way or another.

But there is a limit to everything, and tipping is just one of the things that have it. You can give tips at your own discretion, but too much can either be seen as bribery or an insult. So, how would you know if you are doing it right? It depends on what you know of the etiquette on tipping. Here are some tips on tipping that would go a long way for you:

Timing. As said above, timing can be seen as a “thank you” or as a bribe. If you have asked a particular person to do something for you repeatedly during the course of the day, it is definitely a “thank you.” If you want to be treated something special during your stay, it is all right to give a larger amount to the particular person upfront.
Handy bundles. It does not look pretty digging for bills in your wallet when you have luggage to deal with. Also, it is a waste of time. So have your bills in small denominations bundled neatly and separately so you can easily pull them out for tipping.
Change. Do not ask for change. If you do not have small bills ready, then skip it and give it the next time you have it. You will only end up embarrassing yourself.
Policies. Is there a no-tipping policy in the hotel you are staying in? Do ask when you book your reservation. Also, for smaller bed-and-breakfast joints, the rule of thumb is that if the housekeeping staff is not part of the family, then it is okay to give them tips.
Not an obligation. As mentioned above, tipping is not a requirement. You do not have to feel obligated about tipping.
Custom varies. The custom for tipping varies from country to country. Some of these tips might work in a specific place, while some may not. It is best that you do your homework first before you leave.

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