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December 22, 2021

Who are you tipping this holiday season?

Ah, the holidays. The one time of year we have to pretend to like this guy or that, enjoy gifts from this girl or that and relish a homemade meal from this relative or that.

But enough bitching about such Griswold family moments. The real holiday acting for Canadians come when it’s time to tip our maids, mail carriers and doormen.

And even though the thought of handing over hard-earned cash to the garbage man makes us look like Jets fans after finding out Rex Ryan allegedly took part in his wife’s foot fetish videos, tipping is simply a part of the gig. So, who are you tipping this holiday season?

By a new study from Consumer Reports, cleaning people (what’s the PC way to write "maids" these days, anyway?) will be the servicemen among us raking in the most tips, walking away with about $35 this holiday.

Not enough to buy that private island in French Polynesia, sure, but it’s big money compared to what others in the service biz get.

Check out the accompanying graph, which notes teachers, barbers and pet-care providers only receive a fraction of what maids can bring home.

One interesting note to Consumer Reports’ data is what’s being given to newspaper carriers in 2010. According to the watchdog agency, “in this age of electronic news, a higher percentage of respondents than in the past tipped newspaper carriers.” Now, that’s pity you can take to the bank!

Of course, anytime we run a story like this it’s our contractual obligation to pass on the general “rules” of tipping. By most measures, you’re supposed to give whoever the equivalent of a single session or week’s wage on top of your regular payments. So, if you pay your dog walker $10 to walk your schnauzer twice a week, give them $20 around the holidays. That kind of thing.

But, guidelines or not, there is no template for who  we should tip. That is up to you.

Canadians: who will you tip this holiday season? How much will you give?

By Jason Buckland, MSN Money

(*Graph courtesy: Consumer Reports)



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Gordon PowersGordon Powers

A long-time fund company executive, Gordon Powers now heads up the Affinity Group, a financial services consulting firm. Gordon was a personal finance columnist for the Globe & Mail for many years, has taught retirement planning...

Jason BucklandJason Buckland

The modern-day MC Hammer of money, Jason can often be seen spending cash that isn’t his with the efficiency of a Wilt Chamberlain first date. After cutting his teeth as a reporter for the Toronto Sun, he joined the MSN Money team with...