Tipping Vendors

Tipping is always a sticky subject.  Who to tip?  How much?  When to tip?  Here is a list that I’ve compiled to help you.  You want to be informed ahead of time and prepared with the appropriate amounts.  Remember, gratuities aren’t expected.  If your vendors do a great job and your wedding is a success, then they have earned a gracious tip. 

You need to include your gratuities in your budget to avoid surprises at the very end.  Remember, my product is super helpful for maintaining your budget so that you don’t blow it out of the water.  Just include gratuities in the appropriate areas, and you’ll be alright!  Don’t worry, I have gratuities included as suggested budget line items as a nice reminder to you. 

First things first.  Look over the contract.  Some vendors include gratuities in the bill.  So, before you think about tipping, check the contract.

Catering:  15 – 20% of total bill; $50 or $100 to each chef and $20 to $50 to each server

Waitstaff and Bartenders:  15% of the total bill, pre-tax is appropriate if it isn’t included in the contract. 

Wedding planner:  not expected. But if they exceeded your expectations, giving them an additional 10 to 20% is a nice gesture.  You can present the tip at the end of the wedding.

Photographer and Videographer:  not necessary, but giving $50 to $100 for each additional shooter is nice

Officiant:  most won’t want a tip.  So you can make a donation to their church or a gift card as a thank you.  $100 is appropriate. 

Hair Stylist and Makeup Artist:  15 to 20% is expected, just like a normal salon visit.  Include the tip in your total payment, even if this includes the bridal party. 

Band or DJ:  optional of 50 to $100 each if it isn’t included in the contract. 

Transportation:  optional 15% if it isn’t included in the contract

Florist:  Doesn’t expect a tip.  But do tip the delivery personnel $20 to $50 each.

A good idea for tips is to have them in labeled envelopes.  Have a trustworthy member of the wedding party distribute them at the end of the wedding.  That way, it’s handled and you don’t have to worry about money while you’re enjoying your wedding celebration. 

One form of tipping that vendors love is to provide a positive online review.  Remember when you were researching online and would check out honest reviews from former brides?  Well, now it’s your turn.  Make time once you return from your honeymoon to sit down and review everyone.  They will appreciate it more than you know!