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Tipping mechanics at holidays; how much?

Old 12-09-21, 09:48 AM
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Surfer77
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Tipping mechanics at holidays; how much?

hey everyone,
The bike shop I use has four mechanics! I was going to tip them each $10 for the holidays. Is that too little? I am not wealthy, $80 total would be a little hard for me. Or is better to not tip at all if it cannot be a generous amount?
thanks!
Robyn
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Old 12-09-21, 10:12 AM
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$0.0.
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Old 12-09-21, 10:17 AM
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Take them some Xmas cookies …
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Old 12-09-21, 10:19 AM
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a sincere gesture showing appreciation could go a long way.

"Thank you Sir/Ms"
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Old 12-09-21, 10:25 AM
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20%
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Old 12-09-21, 10:33 AM
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Originally Posted by WaveyGravey View Post
20%
20% of Ghazmh’s $0.0?
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Old 12-09-21, 10:35 AM
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Originally Posted by Ghazmh View Post
$0.0.
You are from Boston, as am I. Thrifty New Englanders advice does not count!
Since I moved to the South six years ago, I have had to learn to smile at ppl. Otherwise they think you dont like them. ; )
-Robyn
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Old 12-09-21, 10:46 AM
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Originally Posted by Surfer77 View Post
You are from Boston, as am I. Thrifty New Englanders advice does not count!
If you don't spend money on stuff, you're being thrifty. If you don't spend money on people, you're being cheap.
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Old 12-09-21, 10:50 AM
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A case of decent beer.

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Old 12-09-21, 11:22 AM
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Ten bucks is not being cheap as a way of saying thank you for being honest and reliable. With that said, a large variety of pastries dropped off first thing in the morning goes a long way too. Do whatever you're comfortable doing. Last year I gave the postal worker in our little town a chocolate orange and she's smiled when she sees me ever since. I'm an old coot and that smile means the world to me. So worth a chocolate orange!
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Old 12-09-21, 11:44 AM
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In 2021 a $10.00 tip seems a little on the cheap side. When we moved recently I gave the head guy $60 in 20's and he called the other two over on the spot and gave each of them their cut. I would not tip bike mechanics since I usually do a better job (albeit much slower) but I was really friendly with the staff of a shop near where we used to live. During The Season, I baked one of my Slammin' Sweet Potato Pies and brought it over and they were like ... uh, what? I don't think any of them took a bite. Such a sad, suspicious, society we have slid down to. So, no cookies. No booze! No money, except for hard labor like a delivery of a large appliance up three flights of stairs. And it wouldn't just be at The Holiday's to tip on top of that kind of service. Tip culture is kind of out of control IMO.
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Old 12-09-21, 11:56 AM
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I'm weird. I don't tip for doing your job. I go out of my way to be understanding and not give anyone a hard time, smile and say thank you, but business sets the price. I pay the price, I expect the service or product to done in a competent manner. I tip for service above and beyond. Call me cheap if you want... It's my money, not yours.

You should tip as you feel. If it is hard for you, dont do it. The tipping expectation that is overcoming this country is getting out of hand, IMHO. If you want to do something nice for them, ask the manager/owner what they would appreciate.
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Old 12-09-21, 11:59 AM
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Robyn, good on ya for being so considerate of the folks working in the back of the shop! If a customer gave me a $10 cash tip, I'd be extremely grateful, and would consider it quite generous.
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Old 12-09-21, 12:11 PM
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Originally Posted by Surfer77 View Post
hey everyone,
The bike shop I use has four mechanics! I was going to tip them each $10 for the holidays. Is that too little? I am not wealthy, $80 total would be a little hard for me. Or is better to not tip at all if it cannot be a generous amount?
thanks!
Robyn
If you can only afford $40, then that's the amount...Tuck it inside a holiday card, and write a nice "thank you" for their good work. Maybe add a six-pack of good beer for them to enjoy some evening after locking up.

I do strongly believe in gratuities (cash or in-kind gifts) for a good shop...But, by far, the best way to show your appreciation is by being a good customer: buy things from them without checking the 'net for a lower price, don't make unreasonable demands, and refer your friends.
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Old 12-09-21, 12:16 PM
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Originally Posted by canopus View Post
I'm weird. I don't tip for doing your job. I go out of my way to be understanding and not give anyone a hard time, smile and say thank you, but business sets the price. I pay the price, I expect the service or product to done in a competent manner. I tip for service above and beyond. Call me cheap if you want... It's my money, not yours.

You should tip as you feel. If it is hard for you, dont do it. The tipping expectation that is overcoming this country is getting out of hand, IMHO. If you want to do something nice for them, ask the manager/owner what they would appreciate.
Alternative perspective: many working people's wages have not really kept pace with inflation for decades now, and so jobs that once paid livable incomes are now paying poverty-level wages. When such people still do good work, and do it in a friendly and thoughtful manner, my gratuity (along with the price paid for the work) is merely part of the total price that I would be paying in a fairer system.
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Old 12-09-21, 12:28 PM
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Originally Posted by Koyote View Post
Alternative perspective: many working people's wages have not really kept pace with inflation for decades now, and so jobs that once paid livable incomes are now paying poverty-level wages. When such people still do good work, and do it in a friendly and thoughtful manner, my gratuity (along with the price paid for the work) is merely part of the total price that I would be paying in a fairer system.
I understand that, but tips should not be counted on. No one should get angry at me for telling me a price, me giving that price and then getting upset for not getting more than was requested.
I don't pay wages, business does. Wages have always been an issue, but that isn't going to be resolved through tipping...
I don't mind tipping, I do it frequently, but the expectation of it is getting out of hand. Slogging sandwiches or coffee is not a career retirement job.
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Old 12-09-21, 12:33 PM
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Originally Posted by Koyote View Post
Alternative perspective: many working people's wages have not really kept pace with inflation for decades now, and so jobs that once paid livable incomes are now paying poverty-level wages. When such people still do good work, and do it in a friendly and thoughtful manner, my gratuity (along with the price paid for the work) is merely part of the total price that I would be paying in a fairer system.
I rarely don't do my own work. The last time was a couple years ago and I was stunned how small the bill was. I asked the owner to check and he looked it up in the computer and my response was, please, you have to charge me more, how can you stay in business. I have often wondered why bike shop labor rates are so low and do not understand it. Are cyclists that cheap? That said, if every customer gave $40 per year, I am sure the mechanics would be happy. Maybe if labor prices matched the value of the service rendered? In any event, OP should give what she feels she can and not worry, IMO
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Old 12-09-21, 12:47 PM
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Originally Posted by canopus View Post
I understand that, but tips should not be counted on. No one should get angry at me for telling me a price, me giving that price and then getting upset for not getting more than was requested.
I would not appreciate such treatment, either, but I can't recall it ever happening to me. Does it happen regularly to you? Honest question, not trying to argue it.

Originally Posted by canopus View Post
Slogging sandwiches or coffee is not a career retirement job.
Maybe not to you, but those are the best jobs available to some workers. And it's not always through their own fault.
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Old 12-09-21, 12:50 PM
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Originally Posted by Surfer77 View Post
hey everyone,
The bike shop I use has four mechanics! I was going to tip them each $10 for the holidays. Is that too little? I am not wealthy, $80 total would be a little hard for me. Or is better to not tip at all if it cannot be a generous amount?
thanks!
Robyn
Suggestion - Dont worry about cash. Take some small gifts like a christmas pudding or a nice plum cake which are 10 $ worth. Gift wrap it and present them. I am sure they will be happy and appreciate your gesture.
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Old 12-09-21, 01:04 PM
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Originally Posted by Surfer77 View Post
hey everyone,
The bike shop I use has four mechanics! I was going to tip them each $10 for the holidays. Is that too little? I am not wealthy, $80 total would be a little hard for me. Or is better to not tip at all if it cannot be a generous amount?
thanks!Robyn
trust your intuition. you might put ea. $10 in it's own plain envelope. I find the logistics of handing over & or receiving of tips more of a challenge than how much. as someone who has given & received tips, any amount is fine
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Old 12-09-21, 01:11 PM
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Originally Posted by Koyote View Post
I would not appreciate such treatment, either, but I can't recall it ever happening to me. Does it happen regularly to you? Honest question, not trying to argue it.
To me personally, not to my face. To my back? How would I know.. I have overheard that criticism in restaurants before and have heard it from family members when they were in the food services. So yes, it happens.

Originally Posted by Koyote View Post
Maybe not to you, but those are the best jobs available to some workers. And it's not always through their own fault.
Just because it is the best job available still doesn't make it a career retirement candidate. And honestly, every bike mechanic I have been around was in school for some other job, although I know two that made a career out of the industry.

I don't say any of this to be harsh or cold, either. I think we have allowed some things to go on in politics that have exacerbated the wage gap issue and social net issue and those things need to be looked at and discussed. It is just my belief that tipping is not a fix for the larger issues at play.

If you are the tipper, tip what you feel is right. To the receiver of a tip, just be thankful. That is all.
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Old 12-09-21, 01:22 PM
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Originally Posted by rumrunn6 View Post
trust your intuition. you might put ea. $10 in it's own plain envelope. I find the logistics of handing over & or receiving of tips more of a challenge than how much. as someone who has given & received tips, any amount is fine
Yes, that is my intent, a card for each with a “thank you” and $10 bill.

As someone pointed out, if many of their customers did likewise, they may do very well!

Thanks to all who weighed in. Happy holidays, and stay safe out there!
-Robyn
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Old 12-09-21, 01:25 PM
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Originally Posted by canopus View Post
I understand that, but tips should not be counted on. No one should get angry at me for telling me a price, me giving that price and then getting upset for not getting more than was requested.
Originally Posted by Koyote View Post
I would not appreciate such treatment, either, but I can't recall it ever happening to me. Does it happen regularly to you?
Originally Posted by canopus View Post
To me personally, not to my face.
Okay, so you're complaining over an imagined slight. That's not helpful to the conversation.


Originally Posted by canopus View Post
Just because it is the best job available still doesn't make it a career retirement candidate.
Since you didn't seem to be limiting the conversation to just bike mechanics, I wasn't either. I tip plenty of other people, for the same reasons I've explained. But here's my question for you: why do you think there is some relationship between the value of a person's work and their further career aspirations? Shouldn't everyone be paid reasonably, no matter their future plans?

And by the way, you directly contradicted yourself with this last statement:
Originally Posted by canopus View Post
And honestly, every bike mechanic I have been around was in school for some other job, although I know two that made a career out of the industry.
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Old 12-09-21, 01:37 PM
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I might give a tip (or more likely, a case of beer or homemade cookies or something like that) if the mechanic went above and beyond to accomodate me, like if he stayed late to finish my bike or got mine in and out on Christmas Eve, stuff like that. Otherwise, no. Mechanics aren't paid like waitresses; in other words, their salary isn't meant to be mostly made up in tips. I don't tip the auto mechanic either.
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Old 12-09-21, 01:48 PM
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Originally Posted by Koyote View Post
Alternative perspective: many working people's wages have not really kept pace with inflation for decades now, and so jobs that once paid livable incomes are now paying poverty-level wages.
True, but that often just means one impoverished person is giving more of their money to another impoverished person instead of finding the root of the cause. Not saying that makes an excuse to not tip, but merely pointing out that neither of your perspectives offer a remedy.
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