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Tipping in Vegas

Discussion in 'Misc. Vegas Chat' started by Sonya, Apr 3, 2013.

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  1. Sonya

    Sonya Queen of VMB

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    I haven't interjected this into one of the tipping discussions in a long time, so thought I would here:

    If you don't feel like tipping the housekeeper or the valet or the bellman or whomever, don't do it.

    That doesn't mean I give everyone a free pass to be cheap. I'm just saying that if you're opposed to tipping, nobody is going to force you. In these tipping threads we sort of come up with an informal consensus of what SOME people do. It's not a law or regulation that you have to or you'll be evicted from Vegas. ;)

    For example, the guy who opens up the taxi cab door and tells the driver where you are going always seems to have a hand out. But I just smile and say a warm "Thank you" unless he has done something else like made a recommendation or help. Okay, if I'm having a good night I may slip him $1, but I don't make it a rule. I'm not comfortable with it, so usually I don't.

    I encourage everyone else to do whatever feels good for you and fits in your budget. Vegas has gotten a lot more expensive in the last 10 yrs and a low roller like myself can't be giving everyone I come in contact with $5 and still have money for food! Tips I've given have always been appreciated. Do it if you feel motivated.

    As to what to tip, the answers are always going to vary. The guy who is betting $2500 a hand is going to have a different standard than the guy betting $5. I'll try to give you a range and you do what feels comfortable.

    At the airport:

    Skycaps - $1-5 per bag

    Getting Around:

    Airport/Rental Car Shuttle Bus Drivers: $1-5 per person

    Limousine Driver: If you rent a limousine for a special occasion or for a tour of the strip, standard tip is usually $5-10 per person or 10% of the bill, whichever is more.

    Free Hotel Shuttles: I have to admit that I rarely tip on these busses unless the driver does something exceptional. Usually $1-2 into the tip cup that is usually in the front of the van somewhere.

    Taxi Drivers: 10% is probably standard, but I am a rounder. A $8.22 fare will get $10.

    At the hotel:

    Front Desk: See the $20 Trick threads for that one.

    Bellman: Usually $1-5 per bag. There is some debate about whether you tip the guy who checks in your bags, the guy who delivers the bags or both. I usually go with both - $1-2 per bag.

    Valet Parking - $1-5. Again, debate about when you drop off/pick up/both. I tip on pickup only unless I have a special request at drop off. I will have some singles in my pocket, $3-4 as I wait for my car. The longer it takes, the fewer bills the valet gets. ;)

    Housekeeping - $1-5 per day. I usually leave it on a pillow, on the bed. Or I'll leave it in a note marked "Housekeeping"

    Concierge: A tip of $5 for getting a dinner reservation is normal. A $10-20 tip for getting show tickets. For hard to get reservations at a restaurant or sold-out show it would be at least $20-50, depending on what your request was.

    Restaurant employees: Restaurant tipping is probably the one we're all most comfortable with. The standard is 15-20% of the total check. If you are dining on a comp or with a coupon, be sure to calculate the tip on the total before your discount.

    Buffet Staff: $1-5 per person.

    In the casino:

    Cocktail waitresses: $1-5 per drink. Some say a tip when you order gets your drink back faster, but I have not found that to be the case.

    Casino Host: No tip required. Many people will give gift cards as thank you gifts, but the general rule is no cash tips for host.

    Change personnel: With TITO this isn't as common, but the people who come to give you your jackpot handpay seem to always bring you small change so tipping is easy. I never feel obligated to tip for this unless they have done something extra for me like held the machine (and I tip for that when it happens) or showed me a machine that was a winner for me.

    Dealers: It varies by game, but often you can place a bet for the dealer along with your own. Or you can simply tip them directly. They can't take money by hand, so be sure to place it on the table and indicate it's a tip for them.

    Again, this is a general consensus, taking into consideration the variety of budgets we have here. I would be surprised if we got to 5 replies before someone tells me that I'm completely wrong. :haha:

    Just do what is most comfortable for you. Don't feel peer pressure to tip when you are not comfortable. And never, EVER let anyone pressure you into tipping for something. If someone complains to you about their tip, just walk away. That's their problem, not yours. I'm not saying everyone has my permission to be a jerk about it, but I hate the idea that people are pushed to give money to anyone in Vegas when they don't feel comfortable with it.
     
    • Informative Informative x 1
  2. mike_m235

    mike_m235 Tourist

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    First off, I think Sonya's post is a pretty even keeled look at the subject. Before this thread gets all emotional and we start debating why people should tip at all, I want to add my two cents.

    I'm from the school of more tipping vs. less, but I'm totally with you on the guy who gets you a cab. I totally don't get why I need to tip that guy, so I don't unless he does something out of the ordinary, which is pretty rare.

    I firmly believe that tipping $5 for drinks gets you better continued service than tipping $1. I believe either is appropriate based on your personal beliefs and financial situation...but if I'm tipping $5 and you're tipping $1, most times I'm getting better service (although if you're sitting next to someone tipping $5, you will tend to get that service as well.) If you don't believe me, experiment with this. It doesn't always hold true, but it's more times than not.

    I don't ever tip at check in because I don't use a bellman and I don't feel the need to tip the person at the register. It makes me feel silly to have someone else carrying my bags, so I don't do it.
     
  3. uli_1515

    uli_1515 Low-Roller

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    I valet a lot. That being said I always tip in and out. I've never had an issue at all. My car isnt scratched or any other non sense. I look at the valet ask him using his name to please park away from other cars and hand him a 5. That small investment in my cars well being has always paid many times over. When I come out and the line is huge I have another 5 or even larger if I'm in a huge hurry and show them the goods and ask if they can get me out of here.

    Kevin
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 3, 2013
  4. smartone

    smartone VIP Whale

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    OUTSTANDING post.... totally agree!
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 3, 2013
  5. ButterflyMtn

    ButterflyMtn High-Roller

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    Awesome...all in one place. My favorite tip is always betting for the boys while playing craps as they get the most excitement out of it as well
     
  6. Dege6

    Dege6 Tourist

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    Vegas is a service industry town. A lot of people's income is dependent on tips. If you can afford to go to Las Vegas and throw money at a deck of cards, a pair of dice or in a machine, you can afford to tip and tip well. Consider it part of your trip budget.

    And anyone who doesn't tip housekeeping needs a spanking. Those ladies work hard.
     
  7. jdvegas

    jdvegas VIP Whale

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    I think a fair number of people on the board get comped limo transport to/from airport sometimes...

    Greeter in terminal: $10
    Limo driver: $20
     
  8. ken2v

    ken2v This Space For Rent

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    Vegas? How about anywhere in the states where service is rendered? Tipping is part of our cultural makeup, it's not so in other parts of the world; act accordingly. But even here, it comes as a reward for doing a job well, not just doing it.

    Good summation, Sonya. Everyone's mileage will vary but this is a good road map.
     
  9. jdvegas

    jdvegas VIP Whale

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    I am not a slot player. What do you tip the person who brings you a hand pay?
     
  10. ken2v

    ken2v This Space For Rent

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    Me? Typically nothing. When the retinue shows up, I try to figure out which one offered me service prior to the blessed event -- a rare occurrence-- rather than simply walking my money out to me.
     
  11. mike_m235

    mike_m235 Tourist

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    I've never hit a hand pay in vegas. But I hit for $800 once just as my server was bringing my drink. I tipped her $10. Just felt like the right thing to do since she was standing there when I hit it. Pretty soon I had more beers than I could drink -- she was literally bringing one before I could finish the previous. Alas, I didn't win again.
     
  12. jamesxnj

    jamesxnj VIP Whale

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    When I play BJ (Usually a $10-15 table) with a buy in of $200 about $20 in dollar chips go out in tips to the server and plays for the dealer and that is just a so-so session say 3 beers time or maybe 3 shoes of cards..

    Bartop VP is $5 first beer if bartender knows me from last trip $2 otherwise and note how fast refills are..Nothing worse than 2 bartenders standing around watching TV or BS'ing at the service area with the CW and trying to get thier attention (Certain times at the Rio middle bar)
    Sportsbook bar there easy refills...Could be my attire of T-shirt sometimes and jeans..They would rather have a suit w/gf sitting there and ordering a martini and not playing a machine..

    Housekeeping is a request to not clean the room on a meet up in the hallway with a couple bucks in hand for coffee or and a few extra towels/shampoo etc.Hopefully that extra time is a break for the maids along thier day.All the change from transactions of the day get left in the room on checkout..

    That is just how I handle LV in the hotel/casino I think it's enough for the time being..
     
  13. nostresshere

    nostresshere Mr. Anti Debit Card

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    As to the guy that opens the cab door.

    Generally, he pisses me off. We all stand in line. We can see a line of cabs a hundred feet or so away just waiting to load up and get going.

    But, the door opening guy only calls up one cab at a time and keeps the line standing there. Drives me nuts. I feel he should give me money.
     
  14. shifter

    shifter Degenerate Gambler

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    I get a limo pickup every time and I've only tipped the greeter once. the guy was really nice and had a couple of tips for us that we hadn't thought about before, so I gave him $10. every other time the greeter just stands there and does almost nothing and I give them nothing. I've never actually even felt bad about it.
     
  15. gpenguins67

    gpenguins67 High-Roller

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    Usually I don't tip those guys unless I'm in a really good mood (definition: actually won money for a change)... or if they give me a reason to tip them (like when I was looking for a good steak one night after 11pm and all the casino steakhouses were prettymuch closed for the night and he gave me a great suggestion of somewhere to go)
     
  16. Hawaiianmark

    Hawaiianmark Low-Roller

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    I'd say all in all well put. If the situation asserts itself; tip and tip well.

    If you are a Craps afficianado you'd be surprised how 'well' you get rated being cool to the crew and not being a dork at the tables.

    A note on hand pays -> if you happen to leave credits due you (post your win) and you did tip the payor; I gurantee they will find you and give you your due.
     
  17. MrSandsman

    MrSandsman Low-Roller

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    Even though I come from a non-tipping country I am happy to tip well for good service in Vegas.

    I too only really have an issue with tipping the door opening guys at the taxi ranks. I will usually only tip if they are moving a long taxi line very fast and efficiently or if they go out of their way for me (such as by arranging for a limo or a Hotel town car if there are no taxis about).
     
  18. Tammy58

    Tammy58 Frugal Slot Jockey

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    Sonya, great post. Fair and reasonable. I totally agree about the taxi line guy.
     
  19. Turtleman

    Turtleman VIP Whale

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    Thanks Sonya, that's a terrific tipping guide.

    I always try to keep at least $10 in 1's in my pocket for tips from the time I leave home, with the first ones going to the shuttle driver at airport parking and bartender in the Sky Club. Once in Vegas, it seems like we're passing out $1's every time we turn around for the reasons already mentioned. It just goes with the territory in a place where a dollar is like a penny found in the street back home.

    We've never tried to add it all up, it would probably sicken us, but total tips (transportation, food servers, cocktail waitresses (mainly cw's), housekeeping, dealers, etc.) over a week-long trip would probably equal airfare!
     
  20. DonD

    DonD Super Moderator

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    I've tipped the taxi line guy one time. It was a couple of days after the Mirage opened and the guy had on this great looking outfit and did a performance every time he hailed another cab. It was quite a show and he earned his tokes. .:thumbsup:
     
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