When you are away from your home and stay in a hotel (for a short or extended time), do you tip? If so, how much and how frequent? Believe it or not, a lot of travelers don’t tip the people who help upkeep your room.
According to the U.S. Department of Labor, the average maid or housekeeper can earn an annual wage of $16,250-$30,130 (average is $19,390). Functioning as “chamber managers,” typical duties include replenishing textiles and linens, cleaning rooms (mopping floors, vacuuming, etc), making beds and more. Some even go above and beyond standard responsibilities by folding clothes and washing dirty dishes.
Whether you stay in a hotel for a few days or a month (and beyond), your room becomes a home away from home. It’s the place you can call your own (for a time being) with places to unpack and hang items, bathe and lay your head at night. It’s like moving into a turnkey home for a time being. Therefore, it is important to tip your housekeeping as they help to alleviate your basic cleaning duties.
How often should you tip?
Everyone has their own comfort zone when it comes to tipping, but the general rule of thumb is about $2-$5/day. After all, they do clean your toilets! If however you plan to extend your hotel stay (about two weeks and beyond), $5/day can add up. So unless you have stellar service that goes above and beyond the call of duty, $2-$3/day is a good amount.
Other take aways
While most maids will clean your room on a daily basis during shorter stays, some may adhere to cleaning your room only a couple times a week during longer visits. This means you may have more than one maid servicing your room. Feel free to ask the front desk for the names of the housekeepers and days (if available) they service your room to equally distribute tips.
Be sure to place tip in a visible place with a small note in front that says “housekeeping.” This will let any service people (should your room require maintenance) know the tip is for your maid. If you don’t feel comfortable, leave the tip at the front desk in an envelope marked with the maid’s name.