Tipping Your Wedding Vendors

July 23, 2012

Have cash on hand on your wedding day, because you want to make sure that you take care of the people who made your day special!  Here are some guidelines on tipping your wedding vendors.

Officiants – Most likely, your church officiant won’t accept a tip, but they will accept a donation.  Typical donations range from $100 to $500.  If you are married by a civil servant like a judge, clerk or non religious official, optional and the appropriate tip would be $50-$100 if they can accept a tip.

Catering Staff – Make sure you find out if gratuity is included in your contract.  If gratuity is not included, it is customary to tip 15% to 20% off of the total bill.  The banquet manager, chefs and serving staff will need to divide between themselves.  Another way calculate this is a flat rate for each person.  You will want to give the banquet manager $100-$300, each chef $50-$100 and each server $20-$50.  Make sure each amount is in a separate envelope.

Musicians and DJ’s – Tipping depends whether you hire them through an agency or independently.  Typically, if you hire through an agency, the tip is included in the contract.  If not, tip each band member $20-$50 per member.  The DJ is also optional, but preferred.  This should range from $50-$150.

Wedding Transportation – Tipping is expected and should be 15%-20% of the entire bill.

Wedding Photographer or Videographer – tipping is not expected unless they are NOT the owners of the studio.  If they are employees of the studio a $50-$200 is the protocol.

Wedding Set Up Staff or Delivery – make sure you tip the people who deliver the cake and flowers, set up the tables, chairs and tents, etc.  The customary tip is $5 to $10 per person.

Hair and Make-Up Artist – Tipping is expected and should be 15%-20% of the total bill.

Wedding Planner – This is optional but it the standard tip would be up to $500 or a nice gift.

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