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How much do we tip the wedding coordinator?

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104 replies to this topic

#21 sxcT

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    Posted 13 October 2011 - 07:35 AM

    Great point!!!

    Originally Posted by all the love 

    I have a bit of a different guideline for tipping - if someone is running their own business (ie. the florist is the owner of the shop, or the person who does your hair runs their own business) you don't tip them, since they have set their own prices to incorporate this. If they are working for someone else and being paid a salary or hourly wage, then it is appropriate to consider tipping. Sometimes it might be hard to tell, especially at a DW, but that's my general rule for tips. The lady who does my nails works out of her home and sets her own prices, so no tipping. If I get them done at a salon or spa, I do tip though.


    Hope that helps some people!


    #22 Brenners

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      Posted 17 October 2011 - 01:01 PM

      Thanks for posting this.  I was wondering who to tip so this is very helpful.  Any guidance on how much?  You mentioned the 15-20% but does that apply across the board?

      #23 CeeBubble

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        Posted 17 October 2011 - 03:22 PM

        Adding my $0.02:


        Many of us face tightening belts and smaller bank accounts, and tipping is very much influenced by one's cultural, social, and economic background. My mother always tipped at least 20%, so the bar was set there from a young age. (It's actually a turnoff for me when friends leave miserly tips at restaurants. Thanks for turning me into a snob, Mom!)


        There are unfortunately no hard and fast rules, but I personally err on the side of "more" rather than "less." I would make sure to include a gratuity/tip in my master wedding budget document to make sure everyone gets their much earned due.


        I also may be biased, as I have friends who play in wedding bands and cater large events. Not to tip them (or tipping them only if they stay late and work longer than originally contracted) seems downright criminal 


        Having traveled abroad and observed real, pervasive, hand-to-mouth poverty, I assure all that even the friendly gesture of a small gratuity (even if the tip is $40, instead of 15% or 20% of services) goes a long way to helping these destinations and their employees stay in business. If you're really confused and feel like yours is a unique and unusual event, feel free to ask the wedding coordinator (or whomever has been the most responsive, polite, and straight forward with you) for their recommendations.


        I guess I'm passionate  about etiquette and curious to hear what others think! 


        P.S. Feel free to call me Ms. Manners 


        #24 MJKH

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          Posted 17 October 2011 - 05:01 PM

          I think that's very considerate and generous, Ms. Manners...your mother should be very proud! : )


          The person at the top of my list to tip is the WP at the resort.  I have seen them schlep/run/dote on their brides from dawn 'til dusk and will quite happily tip $100 - $200 if she helps me achieve the wedding and reception of my dreams.  I'm not sure if it was here on BDW that one Canadian bride wrote something to the effect of..."I was just planning to give her a card and a bottle of maple syrup."  EEEEEEP...I'm sorry if you're still on here, but if I met your every need and desire for an entire week and made your wedding day extra special, I'd be a little disappointed in the maple syrup!  

          #25 ladydi1844

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            Posted 17 October 2011 - 08:31 PM

            I thought the wc should get at least a hundred or two also. Any past brides that can chime in??

            #26 redginger

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              Posted 17 October 2011 - 08:50 PM

              My fiance and I always tip at least 20% at restaurants and other service venues (often 25% if we really love the service). And we're budgeting for tips in our wedding budget. But to be honest, I'm finding it really hard right now to even imagine tipping our wedding coordinator, DJ or any other wedding vendors. They have all been extremely unresponsive and I have had to do so much work on my own -- more than I had anticipated for a destination wedding. If they exceed my expectations on the day of the wedding, then I will definitely tip big -- but I don't plan to tip if they don't deliver good service.

              #27 MJKH

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                Posted 18 October 2011 - 09:02 AM

                Oh, I hear you redginger!  Luckily I have a TA who is a bit of a bulldog (in the nicest way possible) and isn't afraid to get on the phone to Mexico and call about the really urgent items (like making sure we have the suite offered in our package for 2 full weeks and not a downgrade due to lack of availability).  But I got a reality check very early on...with two hundred days and probably two to three hundred weddings in between booking and our wedding date, we were clearly not their priority.  And honestly, although it's totally not my style (I like to have everything planned down to the last detail), our wedding has certainly evolved over the last few months...plans change...guest numbers change and affect venues...you fall in love with a reception dress that affects the colours and decor style...it's probably a good thing that I've had lots of time to work stuff out in my head and on paper before presenting my very detailed but concise folder of ideas/wishes to the wedding planner (6 weeks ahead of time and again when we arrive at the resort).  I wouldn't be the least bit surprised if the WP we end up working with is someone different than we have been communicating with...that seems to be the trend at most resorts...WPs burn out/get better offers/move on.  


                In March of this year, I e-mailed the gentleman that I wanted to have play guitar for our ceremony...and in his broken English, he very politely told me to get in touch with him again in December, as a lot can happen over the course of a year.


                I think some of the best advice we've been given from other brides is take copies of all of your e-mails...take inspiration photos along for your hair/makeup/decor etc. in case there is a language barrier or any confusion around what you're looking for as an end result.

                Originally Posted by redginger 

                My fiance and I always tip at least 20% at restaurants and other service venues (often 25% if we really love the service). And we're budgeting for tips in our wedding budget. But to be honest, I'm finding it really hard right now to even imagine tipping our wedding coordinator, DJ or any other wedding vendors. They have all been extremely unresponsive and I have had to do so much work on my own -- more than I had anticipated for a destination wedding. If they exceed my expectations on the day of the wedding, then I will definitely tip big -- but I don't plan to tip if they don't deliver good service.


                #28 CeeBubble

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                  Posted 18 October 2011 - 10:10 AM

                  Eeep is right!! Unless it's really really good maple syrup, and the card contains a check for $200!

                  #29 emstypes

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                    Posted 19 October 2011 - 04:18 PM

                    This was very helpful!  Thanks for the info!

                    #30 ska2m

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                      Posted 20 October 2011 - 07:03 AM

                      Wow, i know i posted on the DPC Brides page and no one had a response on tipping (except one was that their parents did the tipping, so i wonder how much that was),


                      But this whole tipping situation quite frankly worries me that brides do not tip. I find that pretty ofensive and i also think it's so wrong that people recommend not tipping certain vendors. I feel that if a service was performed, then a tip should definitely be rewarded. I am going to go by what the standard tipping procedure is for a wedding in the USA. It should not matter if you are getting married in a different country to base your tip on this. So below i pasted what "The Knot" recommends as i believe they would be very close to accurate. They state that all vendors should get some sort of tip. I think that even though the wedding planners below are optional, i am tipping mine a minimum of $100. I have had nothing but amazing experiences thus far with my wedding planning. I have spoken to all of my vendors directly (DJ Mannia, Tronco Florist, Photographer Michael Weiler and Deyanira WC of DPC) all of them have always responded to me within 2-3 days of all of my emails. I have been planning my wedding since March 2010 and have always had back and forth communications. Within the past 5 months, i have had frequent communications with the vendors and WC to finalize all the details and am extremely happy with the outcome thus far. I already set up all my meetings with my vendors for when i arrive to DR in two weeks to review everything one final time. They are all meeting me at the hotel to go over details.


                      To sum it all up, i have had a successful relationship with everyone who is taking part in my wedding and they will all get tipped. Even my florist as she has just been so sweet via emails and phone calls that i feel bad not giving her anything. I think unless the vendor doesn't show up or something, then maybe reconsider the tip, otherwise, they will definitely appreciate an extra thank you for their hard work and making your day great! And if apparently vendors aren't getting tipped, they will just love you more for it as it will be a complete shock to them! Anyway, just my two sense. I just couldn't stay quiet after seeing all the back and forth on tipping when all along i thought it was just common courtesy to tip everyone.


                      FROM THE KNOT:


                      When you're already dipping deep into your (or your parents') savings for so many wedding expenses, shelling out gratuities on top of that can be hard to handle. Well, rest easy: unless a service charge is spelled out in your contract, you're never obligated to tip anyone.

                      However you can't ignore the fact that some vendors will expect a gratuity, which forces tipping to be considered on a case-by-case scenario. Some general rules: Don't tip business owners, only tip their employees (however, you can/should tip an owner when the service exceeds expectations); tip vendors who offer exceptional service; thank-you notes are always appreciated; and assign the responsibility to a trusted deputy such as your wedding planner, a parent, or the best man. For a breakdown of what's customary for each vendor, read on.


                      Wedding Planner

                      Wedding planners won't likely expect anything; however, if yours did a great job you can always offer a token of your appreciation. (Note: Non-monetary thank-yous like professional photos of the wedding for the planner's portfolio can go a long way too.) Approximately 50 percent of couples do tip their planners -- typically those with more opulent weddings.
                      Protocol: Optional
                      The $tandard: Up to $500, or a nice gift
                      When to Tip: The bride should hand off the envelope at the end of the reception, or, she should send a thank-you note with photos or a check after the honeymoon.



                      Wedding Hair Stylist and Makeup Artist

                      This is one area where a gratuity is definitely expected. Tip between 15 - 20 percent just as you would in a hair salon, and consider giving a little extra if there's a crisis, like one of your bridesmaids has a meltdown over her updo and it requires a redo at the last minute.
                      Protocol: Expected
                      The $tandard: 15 - 25 percent, depending upon the quality of service
                      When to Tip: At the end of your service



                      Wedding Delivery and Set-up Staff

                      Slip a few dollars to anyone delivering important items to the site (wedding cake, flowers, or sound system). And if a lot of gear needs to be brought in and set up (tents, chairs, or port-a-potties), the workers deserve a tip too.
                      Protocol: Expected
                      The $tandard: $5 - $10 per person
                      When to Tip: Drop off cash envelopes the day before the wedding to the catering manager so the person accepting deliveries can turn the tip.



                      Wedding Ceremony Officiant

                      If your officiant is affiliated with a church or synagogue, you're often expected to make a donation to that institution. If you're a member you'll probably want to give a larger amount than if you're not. However, if you're getting married there and they're charging you to use the space, feel free to give a smaller amount. If you're using a nondenominational officiant, no tip is required because they will charge you for their time.
                      Protocol: Expected (depending on officiant)
                      The $tandard: Donate $500+ to the church or synagogue, or, for a nondenominational officiant, an optional tip of $50 - $100 
                      When to Tip: Most ceremony fees are required prior to the wedding. Otherwise, have the best man pass the cash envelope at the rehearsal dinner if the officiant is in attendance.



                      Wedding Ceremony Musicians

                      If you worked with a mini orchestra to come up with the perfect score for your service (and they pulled it off flawlessly), consider showing some monetary thanks for their talent. However, you probably don't have to tip the solo church organist who was required to play.
                      Protocol: Optional
                      The $tandard: $15 - $20 per musician
                      When to Tip: At the end of the ceremony.



                      Wedding Photographer/Videographer

                      You're not expected to give your shutterbugs any dough beyond their normal fees. Yet if the wedding photographer or videographer doesn't own the studio, consider tipping each person (or give a certain amount with a thank-you note to disperse to staff).
                      Protocol: Unnecessary, unless the photographer is not the studio owner.
                      The $tandard: $50 - $200 per vendor
                      When to Tip: At the end of the reception.



                      Wedding Reception Staff

                      This type of staff includes the on-site coordinator, maitre d', and banquet manager. A service charge (typically 2 percent) is almost always built in to the food and drink fee, so check your contract. If the gratuity is not included, tip as follows.
                      Protocol: Expected
                      The $tandard: 15 - 20 percent of the food and drink fee (based on labor, not the cost), or $200 - $300 for the maitre d'.
                      When to Tip: If it's covered in the contract, the final bill is typically due before the reception. Otherwise, have the father of the bride or best man hand the envelope to the maitre d' at the end of the reception since you will need to know the final tab to calculate the percentage.



                      Wedding Reception Attendants

                      When it comes to bartenders, waitstaff, parking, bathroom, and coat-room attendants the rules of tipping are dictated by your contract. If the service fee is included, consider doling out extra only if the service was exceptional. If it's not included, ask ahead of time how many attendants will be working your wedding and calculate on a per person basis.
                      Protocol: Optional, based on contract
                      The $tandard: $20 - $25 per bartender or waiter; $1 per guest for coat room and parking attendants; $1 per car
                      When to Tip: Although tips are traditionally passed out at the end of the event, you could alternately distribute them at the beginning of the evening, to encourage all the workers to give you great service.



                      Wedding Reception Band or DJ

                      Whether you hire 12-piece swing band or grooving to a DJ, tipping musicians is completely optional. (Depending on the quality of the job and how willing they were to follow your ideal playlist!) And don't forget about any sound technicians they bring with them.
                      Protocol: Optional, yet preferred
                      The $tandard: $20 - $25 per musician; $50 - $150 for DJs 
                      When to Tip: At the end of the reception, by the best man.

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