Charlotte Wedding Planners :: Tipping Vendors

 

WHEW…it’s been a while since we last posted…but we do have a good excuse!  We are in full swing over here at Hall & Webb Event Design with all of fabulous spring/summer weddings and we can’t wait to blog all of them!

 

That being said, we’ve had a lot of brides/grooms/parents ask us about tipping…here is some great advice on the subject ::

 

Via Martha Stewart ::

 

Officiants
A typical amount is $75 to $100, separate from any fee you may be charged for the officiant’s time.

 

Catering Staff

Many caterers include a gratuity in their contract to be divided up among the workers, but be sure to ask. If the gratuity isn’t included, plan on tipping all staff members, including the catering or banquet manager, waiters, bartenders, chefs, and other essential workers who help serve guests.

 

You can calculate the tip as a percentage of the cost of your total catering bill. Figure on paying about 15 to 20 percent of the amount for the banquet manager to share with the kitchen and serving staff. Another way to compute the gratuity is to offer a flat amount for each worker, which is often a more economical method, especially if your catering company is expensive. You’ll want to give roughly $100 to $200 for the catering or banquet manager, $50 each for chefs (and bakers), and $20 to $30 each for waiters and kitchen staff, divided into separate envelopes.

 

Tips can be paid in advance to the director of the catering company, or you can hand them to the banquet manager toward the end of the evening.

 

Musicians and DJ’s

Tipping customs vary, depending on whether you hire an independent band or deejay or book through an agency. For independent bands that book their own gigs, tipping is not customary.

 

If you employ your band or deejay through an entertainment agency, the company will usually either include a gratuity in the contract or suggest that you give each band member or deejay a little extra in cash. If your contract includes a “service charge,” don’t assume that it is the gratuity. “The service charge often goes right back to the company,” says Scriven.

 

Musicians should be tipped about $20 to $25 apiece; deejays get at least $25. Many bands offer a vocalist for the ceremony at an additional cost. Tip him or her the same amount as you would one of the other musicians. Hand out the tips in cash at the end of the night.

 

Stylists and Makeup Artists
Even though it’s a particularly special day, you can still tip stylists and makeup artists as you would for a regular appointment — 15 to 20 percent. For each assistant who helps with secondary tasks, such as shampooing, plan on giving a gratuity of $3 to $5.

 

You can hand out tips in envelopes directly to stylists, or leave them at the salon’s front desk. If you’re short on cash, it’s fine to tip by check or include it on a charge. If a stylist comes to your home or the wedding site, tip as you would at a salon, but in general, makeup artists and hair stylists who own their own businesses are not tipped.

 

Photographers, Videographers, Florists, and Wedding Coordinators
For photographers, videographers, and florists, tip $30 to $50; wedding coordinators should be given about $50 to $100.

 

If you feel that the service you received from one of these vendors was extraordinary (say, if the videographer stayed and took footage of an after-wedding party even though it wasn’t in his contract), an additional 10 percent tip would be a nice gesture. Or you might send a thank-you gift such as flowers or a print from your photographer showing the vendor in action at your wedding.

 

Seamstresses, Delivery People, and Drivers
Though they won’t actually be at the wedding, these workers’ preparatory roles are just as important, so be sure to thank them in some way.

 

The people delivering the flowers and cake should receive at least $5 each at the time they make their deliveries. A gratuity for your limousine driver may already be included in your bill, but if it’s not, consider giving a tip of 15 to 20 percent of the cost (pay it in cash when the driver picks you up). For seamstresses, a cash tip is not expected, but sending a small gift such as a photo of you in your dress is a wonderful way to show your gratitude.

 

 

Regardless of whether or not tips are required, expected or recommended, remember the purpose of wedding tips. You should choose to tip wedding vendors because you appreciated their services, you felt like they went above and beyond and they made life easy for you on your big day.

 

 

 

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