You Oughta Tip the Bellhop

Tipping can be good for you (Search “altruism is good for your health,” and find out why.) And no matter how tough “the economy” is, if you are staying in a hotel that’s nice enough to have bellhops, you should always tip, even if you only have one bag. The bottom line: You can afford nice sheets and a fluffy white robe, so the assumption is you can part with a few dollars for small acts that make your stay a little bit nicer. jeddahvape

Ah, the tip. It has become a sort of social barometer. If you’re out to dinner with someone new, for instance, and they either don’t tip, complain about having to tip, or toss a quarter on the table and call it good enough, that doesn’t bode well for a future 1st anniversary gift or kindness in general.

And how people tip says a lot about their social grooming and character. Someone who makes a show of the tip is most likely battling some nasty form of low self esteem or worse, while the person who tips way too much simply because they’re “not a numbers person” may be less than competent with finances. sob-bau

Of course, you can go overboard trying to “read” someone by how they tip (we all have our bad days), but if you want to navigate social and work-related scenes smoothly, it’s best to keep a few things in mind. For the purposes of this article, we’ll focus on the bellhop, your veritable welcoming committee and “connection extraordinaire.” They carry and cart your bags and then perform myriad behind-the-scenes tasks to ensure your comfort. When you have problems or need extra help, the bellhop is your best ally, especially if you treat him – or her – fairly.

While you might be tipping the bellhop randomly, just because “it’s done,” there are standards and guidelines for tipping that will make you aware and ensure you handle tipping seamlessly.

Get Ready

First, you’ll need to know how much to give the man or woman charged with carrying or carting your bags, adjusting the climate controls, and turning down your covers. It almost – but not quite – goes without saying that when you’re packing for your trip, you should remember to bring along some small bills. Make them easy to access and be ready to part with them.

Standard tipping rates vary by region (and by those in the business of giving tipping advice, actually), but you can’t go wrong by tipping up to $1.50 per bag. That’s per bag. Don’t tip less than $1 per bag. You may also tip $5 for overall service. odozapato

If your bellhop does a professional job of orienting you to your new environs, add a few more dollars to the tip. And if special circumstances arise – for example, if you have to ask for another room – compensate the astute bellhop who takes care of the details for you. A $5 tip in this case is not unusual and will be appreciated.

Get Set

You’ve made the decision to tip well. You have a cache of bills ready to go. Your bellhop is orienting you to your room and the time to tip is upon you. Important: Don’t make a show of giving the tip. A surreptitious passing from hand to hand is best. Don’t embarrass yourself, your companions or the bellhop by making a big deal of tipping.

Do make eye contact when you tip.

Also-one would assume this goes with out saying, but just in case-you shouldn’t ask for change when you tip. So, if you don’t have small bills available, it would be better to skip the tip until you can procure some smaller bills. You can request change from the front desk and discreetly hand the tip to the bellhop later. rtp500


Follow these guidelines and you will sail through your hotel stay, spreading good cheer and perhaps investing in some great karma down the line.


  1. Be courteous to all hotel employees. Use your manners and you may be ensuring better service as you enjoy your stay.
  2. Catch more flies with honey: Be kind to bellhops, housekeeping and all who work to make your stay pleasant. If the service is less than stellar, it may be due to something out of the hands of your bellhop or other service person (or they may be enduring personal struggles). Instead of admonishing directly, report problems to the manager.

One Last Word


Some hotels have begun adding gratuities to the hotel bill and eliminated tipping. This is not a widespread practice, but it doesn’t hurt to check. A quick call before you leave for your trip will take care of the matter. Think of tipping bellhops as part of a personal mission to make the world a better place on a small scale. Instead of, or in addition to, donating to Heifer International or Toys for Tots once a year, a personal habit of being a generous tipper can have an immediate, positive effect while possibly ensuring continued quality service.


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