Wedding Gratuity Guide
One of the most common questions is “how much should I tip my wedding vendors?” It can be awkward to ask each vendor what they’re usually tipped, which is why I wanted to break it down for you in this wedding gratuity guide.
As a wedding planner, I’ve gotten a good feel for what’s standard and where there’s some wiggle room. But regardless of what you choose, know that gratuity of any kind is appreciated by your vendors.
When deciding who should receive a gratuity at your wedding, follow the standards of everyday life! If you would tip them at a salon or restaurant, you’ll tip them at a wedding. Otherwise, tipping is optional. But when clients elect to provide gratuity, here is what I typically see!
Bartenders usually receive a tip of $100 per person unless there is a tip jar. If there is a tip jar, there is not usually an additional tip given unless they did an exceptional job. *standard
Catering Service Staff
Catering is typically receiving an 18-20% tip of the food cost.
*Standard Note: Gratuity goes directly to your day-of staff and helps supplement their income. Gratuity is different than a service fee. The service fee covers the cost of business and remains with the owner for admin time and other overhead while gratuity is given to the wedding day staff.
Hair & Make Up
20% of service cost. This is often included, make sure to double-check your contract. *standard
Planners and Designers
20% of the planning package. The amount tipped is contingent on the level of service you have booked.
$100-$500 – The amount you tip is contingent on the level of installation your florist is performing. *optional
Photographer(s) & Videographer(s)
$300-$700 – If you have multiple photographers or videographers, it is common that the main photographer will receive more than the second photographer. *optional
$40 for each musician – If tipping in this category, smaller bills make it easier for distribution amongst the musicians. *optional
$250-$500 – I typically see the higher end of the spectrum if your DJ is providing additional services (i.e. GOBO, Uplights, etc.) *optional
Tipping for band members is normally $50-$100 for each member. Keep in mind there is not only the band but crew members involved in set-up/breakdown (i.e. Sound Engineer, etc.) *optional
Rental Delivery Personnel
$25-$50 per person – This goes to the person who delivers your rentals to your venue. Consider that you could have multiple rental companies. *optional
$25-$50 per person – This goes to the person who delivers your items to your venue. *optional
$25-$50 per person – If you have multiple security guards, please separate their tips into individual envelopes. *optional
$50-$100 per person – If you have worked closely with someone at your venue or would like to tip the manager for their assistance throughout the entire process. *optional
$50-$100 – If you have hired an officiant, consider tipping them for their support in creating your ceremony and for their work day-of. *optional
$25-$100 per person – This goes to the person who delivers and installs your lighting. I see it on the higher end if a tech stays to monitor throughout the event *optional
A few reminders…
There is no one-size-fits-all when it comes to gratuity. So please feel free to tip as you see fit. All suggestions throughout this wedding gratuity guide are solely based on amounts I normally see vendors receiving in this area.
Cash is usually the preferred method of tipping. Please place each vendor’s tip in a separate envelope.
Also, don’t forget to write a review or a handwritten thank you note. Your words of affirmation mean the world to your vendors and reviews allow for business growth, assuring future clients with the same peace of mind you had when booking your vendors.
If you found this information helpful, be sure to share it with a fellow bride and check out the blog for more planning advice!
I'd love to hear more about your wedding day vision, and I would be honored to serve you in this season of engagement!