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How to Know How Much to Tip at Hotels

Do you have to tip every person who touches your luggage during a trip? We’ve got the answer to that question, and other travel quandaries.


  • Step 1: Carry small bills Keep a lot of dollar bills on hand when you travel so you never have to choose between stiffing someone and over-tipping them.
  • Step 2: Tip the luggage handlers Give the skycap – the person who helps you with your luggage at the airport - and the bellhop – the person who carries your suitcases to your hotel room - $2 for the first bag and $1 for each additional suitcase.
  • Step 3: Tip for transportation Slip the doorman a dollar for hailing you a cab. If there’s a parking attendant, give them a dollar or two whenever they bring your car around.
  • Step 4: Leave something for the housekeeper Leave $2 to $5 per day for the cleaning staff. If there’s no designated envelope, ask the front desk for plain ones or wrap the cash in a piece of paper with 'housekeeper' written on it.
  • TIP: Tip bellhops, valets, housekeepers, and other hotel personnel about the same in most places around the world. The exception is Japan, where tipping is not only not expected – it’s considered rude!
  • Step 5: Check the room service policy Check the room service policy before you add a tip to the bill; many hotels tack on a gratuity.
  • Step 6: Compensate the concierge Don’t feel you have to tip the concierge unless they do something special, like arrange tickets to a sold-out show. No need to tip them for giving you directions or making a dinner reservation.
  • FACT: Twenty-six percent of American travelers polled say they avoid the bellman and the skycap to avoid having to tip them!

You Will Need

  • General tipping guidelines
  • Your own judgment

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