So many of our clients ask us about gratuity. This is something that really varies from event to event. I ALWAYS go back to the classic list from our mother site The Knot. Here is what they have to say
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: OptionalThe $tandard: Up to $500, or a nice giftWhen 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: ExpectedThe $tandard: 15 - 25 percent, depending upon the quality of serviceWhen 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: ExpectedThe $tandard: $5 - $10 per personWhen 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: OptionalThe $tandard: $15 - $20 per musicianWhen to Tip: At the end of the ceremony.
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 vendorWhen 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: ExpectedThe $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 contractThe $tandard: $20 - $25 per bartender or waiter; $1 per guest for coat room and parking attendants; $1 per carWhen 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 preferredThe $tandard: $20 - $25 per musician; $50 - $150 for DJs When to Tip: At the end of the reception, by the best man.
So Excited from the meeting that Emma & I had Yesterday. All I can think of is "Up Up and AWAY!"
With many incredible things happening in the near future, I wanted to give a special thanks to you all our fans, followers, and the fantastic Brides & Grooms that we have had the pleasure of working with. we LOVE what we do, and LOVE who we meet. Making that day the best day of your lives is the sweetest thing. xo Helen & Emma
We are booking up fast for 2012 already! With that and the few dates we have left for this year - We are offering a special 50% discount for 2011 clients to be!! Mention this blog post and email us today for a free initial consultation for your wedding and receive half off our packages plus special gifts and free printing for your custom invitations!!!!
Table Numbers, there are so many different ways to do them. I LOVE the photo ones, as well places that the couple has visited. Since we do a lot of beach weddings, favorite beaches is a great ones as well. I also LOVE the traditional numbers, here are a few cute ideas that you can incorporate into your centerpieces as well!