The Star Democrat

Holiday tipping

- MARY HUNT

If you’re not sure who to tip, ask yourself: Can I afford to be without this person? By “afford to be without,” I mean, do you want to face the future without this person’s services?

If you cannot bear the thought, then a tip is in order as an expression of gratitude for the service provided throughout the year and the fact that you do depend heavily upon this person.

HAIRDRESSE­R

If she left me, I’d wish her well, face the future with a heavy sigh and somehow find another, but not be happy about it. $50 tip.

YARD WORKER

We have a landscape maintenanc­e company that services our property. They do fine, but I don’t know any of the workers by name. Believe me, if this company goes out of business, I have my pick of about 50 others that will do the same thing. No tip.

HOUSEKEEPE­R

Raquel is punctual, immaculate, trustworth­y and reliable.

$150 tip. Gladly.

MAIL CARRIER

The U.S. Postal Service forbids carriers from accepting cash. However, they may accept a nominal item with a value under $20.

BABYSITTER

For a regular sitter on whom you depend and who consistent­ly gives excellent care, Martha Stewart suggests a tip equal to two nights’ pay and a small gift from the children.

TRASH COLLECTOR

If you actually know the person who collects your trash, I am told that a tip of $15 to $20 is customary. Or a six-pack.

Never underestim­ate the value of a handwritte­n note on pretty holiday stationery. Any expression of gratitude that comes from your heart is never wrong.

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