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How Much to Tip Wedding Vendors

By Adorn Nashville September 19, 2020 Wedding Day

Coordinating payment for your many vendors can be quite a daunting task, but no bride should overlook tipping! Many vendors rely on tips as part of their income, while some don’t expect tips at all. Navigating who to tip and how much to tip them can be overwhelming, luckily, we’re here to help!

First of all, the most important thing all brides must remember to do is read their contracts. Regardless of typical etiquette, you should make sure that gratuity isn’t included in your contract. Service charges and administrative fees don’t typically count as tips, however, if a “gratuity charge” is already added to your total, you’re free to skip the tip!

If you are leaving a percentage-based tip, make sure that you’re tipping on the pre-tax total. You should only be using the vendors’ prices to calculate tips, the cumulative total after tax should not be considered. Tipping on the post-tax amount is a sure way to over-tip, however, feel free to add some extra cash if you felt your vendors went above and beyond!

We’ve compiled all of the information you’ll need when figuring out which vendors to tip, along with how much to tip them.

Expected Tips: These vendors fully expect a tip and their prices usually reflect that. You should plan on tipping each employee from each vendor, however, it’s not customary to tip the owner of the business.

  • Delivery or Set Up: $5 - $10 per person
  • Officiant: $50 - $100 tip, plus a $50 - $500 donation to their house of worship if they have one.
  • Hair/Makeup: 15-20% of the total cost

Optional Tips: You can go either way on a tip for these vendors. While it’s not mandatory, if they knock it out of the park or give you a great deal, it can be a nice gesture.

  • Wedding Planner/Coordinator: 10-20% of their fee up to $500
  • Photographer/Videographer: $50-$200 per person
  • DJ: 10-15% of total bill or $50 - $150
  • Band: $25-$50 per musician
  • Photo Booth Attendant: $50 - $100
  • Seamstress: $20 – $40

Tips Dependent on Contract: These are vendors whose tips are often included in their contract. Carefully read your agreement to make sure that you know whether or not they’ll be expecting a tip from you ahead of time. If gratuity isn’t included in the contract, you’ll want to tip these vendors. Be sure that the couple is the only one giving out tips! Guests should not be expected to contribute tips to the wedding vendors.

  • Transportation: 15-20% of total bill if not included in contract
  • Caterer: 15-20% of the total catering cost if not included in contract
  • Bartenders: 10-20% of total alcohol bill if not included in contract

No Tip: These vendors don’t typically require or expect tips. Of course, if they went above and beyond, they’ll usually be grateful to receive a tip, however you aren’t obligated to provide one. Be sure to leave a positive review and tag them in any photos you post as a thank you!

  • Florists: Don’t require tips, but the delivery person should receive one
  • Bakers: Don’t require tips, but the delivery person should receive one
  • Stationary Provider: Don’t require tips

Prepping your tips in advance will be a huge time-saver that also helps ensure no vendors fall through the cracks and miss out on their tip from you. Bring pre-labeled envelopes with your vendor tips ready and have your wedding planner or a designated family member handle passing them out to the vendors.

Regardless of if your vendor receives a tip or not, if you enjoyed their services be sure to leave a review on Google, Yelp, Wedding Wire, or The Knot! You probably did some online research to find your vendors, so help other brides have the same experience that you did! Leaving a review is a great way to thank your vendors and help them bring in new business.

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