Making It Easier to Tip Your Housekeeper

When you check into a hotel, you probably tip the bellman, maybe even the concierge. You leave a tip for your servers in the restaurant, the room service server, and the bartender also. But, do you tip the people who keep your room nice and clean?

Tip Quote with Picture of  Cash

More than half of Americans don’t tip the housekeeping staff when staying in a hotel, though many claim they weren’t aware that you could or should. With an industry median wage of about $9.50 per hour, housekeepers certainly could use the additional cash that tipping provides, and a new initiative called “The Envelope Please” aims to make it easier for that to happen.

The project is the brainchild of A Woman’s Nation™ founder Maria Shriver, who developed the idea from conversations with housekeepers she met while traveling. Marriott is the first partner hotel company, announced Monday during International Housekeepers Week. President and CEO Arne Sorenson said “Marriott is proud to support The Envelope Please to shine a light on the excellent behind-the-scenes work our room attendants do day in and day out,” adding that “room attendants are the largest employee group within Marriott International and the heart of the house.” Envelopes should be available at Marriott’s 18 brands this week, which is also International Housekeepers Week.

This raises the question of how and how much to tip your housekeeper. The American Hotel and Lodging Association suggests tipping as much as $5 per night, in keeping with recommendations from most travel experts. According to one recent survey, about a third of those who do tip the housekeeping staff leave one or two dollars a night, with 44% tipping $5. If your hotel doesn’t have a tip envelope, just leave a simple note of thanks with your tip in an obvious place. Experts also recommend tipping daily instead of when checking out to be sure the tip actually goes to the person who cleaned your room.

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Do you regularly tip the housekeepers? If not, will The Envelope Please inspire you to tip more often? Who else do you think we should remember to tip in our travels?

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