Would You Rather?

Would you rather tip your building staff throughout the year or at the holidays only?

By Mayra David  | December 13, 2013 - 10:46AM

If you live in a NYC apartment building, you're probably handing out a few cash-stuffed envelopes this month to the staff.   (No? Check out BrickUnderground's 2013 Holiday Tipping Guide.)   Today's seasonally appropriate question is this: Given the choice, would you rather tip throughout the year, as services are provided, or give one big, lump-sum tip at the holidays?

  • Lump sum A lump sum is better so that way I don’t have to do that awkward song and dance with a staff member every time I ask for a favor. It takes the stress out of the situation.  - Lana, Hamilton Heights
  • Year-round and lump sum I do tip, but I don't like the idea of mandatory tipping. In a way, the holidays are actually like a policy that tells you it's time to give the building staff monetary compensation  for the work they do year-round. Neighbors will sometimes try to out-do each other, hoping to get in the staff's good graces and get preferential treatment during the year. I think the guys who work in my building deserve acknowledgement throughout the year if they go above their set duties. The point of a tip is that it's an extra "thank you"  when they do something for you. If I give a holiday tip, too, then it's because of the holidays, and not because of services they've already rendered. Plus, I'm sure they wouldn't mind some extra cash every once in a while during the year, too. -Raj, Upper West Side
  • Lump sum  As long as the staff understands that, I would so much prefer to do the tipping thing once and be done with it.  - Gerry, Murray Hill
  • Lump sum One big lump sum during holiday season is better, since it’s the season for giving anyway. Plus, I can look back at the year and see who really provided services above and beyond and reward them accordingly. I’d give a tip to all staff members, of course. But I wouldn’t mind acknowledging with a larger tip that somebody just did more than others. - Eric, Upper West Side.
  • Year-round and lump sum I give the guys a tip whenever they do something for me that is really, really not part of their job. I give a small holiday present along with a tip. I don't like just to give money at the holiday for the work they do. Because holidays are different, and a holiday tip is like my present to them because they are like part of my extended family. -Lucci, Harlem
  • Lump sum  I do appreciate what the staff does for us. They get a salary, but they’re also friendly and do a good job, and I like to show my appreciation to them come holiday time. So I say, one big lump sum. It can feel more like giving a generous present then.  - Monica, Midtown West

Verdict: Lump sum: 4, Lump sum AND year round: 2
Winner: Lump-sum holiday tipping!

Related posts:

Dear Ms. Demeanor: 5 tricky tipping isues

Doormen Speak: What's a fair tip, who gets the best tips, best tip alternatives/supplements and more

BrickUnderground's 2013 Holiday Tipping Guide

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