Guide to Tipping in LAS VEGAS
Tipping, toking, greasing: all synonymous for sliding money to an employee for a job well done or to insure that a pending job becomes a job well done. Some claim that “tip” is an acronym for “To Insure Prompt Service” or “To Insure Proper Service” or “To Improve Performance.” In truth, tip is a slang term, origin unknown, and leaving tips has become a customary part of the American culture. In certain industries, the bulk of an employee's wages comes from customer tips.
Just how much are you expected to tip someone? What is a good tip? What is a poor tip? Do you tip before a service or afterward? Use the examples below for an idea of what is appropriate.
$2 per drink is a respectable tip for a bartender. If you are sitting at a bar playing the machines and you hit a jackpot, it is customary to tip your bartender more than normal – 10% of your winnings is generous.
When you're playing table games, you can tip the dealer in two ways. You can give a hand-in, which is to say that you hand the dealer cash or casino chips, or you can tip in the form of a bet. In blackjack and other table games, you simply put your bet inside the betting circle and the dealer's bet just above it. In craps, you just toss your bet to the stickman and instruct him where to put it, saying it's a bet for the dealers. If you're receiving good service or are winning, you are expected to tip. The amount is entirely up to you but it is customary to tip according to the denomination you're betting. If you're betting $10 a hand, a $1 tip is okay. If you're betting $1,000 a hand, a $1 tip is not okay.
A $3-5 tip for a valet attendant is fairly standard. $10 is generous. $20 is very generous. You may tip the valet when you're dropping your car off, picking your car up, or both. If you want a primo parking spot and to insure a speedy pick-up, tip when you drop your car off. But if you do that, your tip shouldn't be the bare minimum. If you tip up front, the valet will make a notation on your tip on the ticket, so you won't be expected to tip on the way out again (unless of course you want to).
Tip a taxi driver at least 10% of your fare. If the fare is under $10, throw them a couple bucks. Limo drivers expect 20% of the fare and at least $20-40 for shorter rides. If a driver is chauffeuring you for the entire evening, a minimum of $75-80 is expected.
When you're playing table games in a casino, the drinks are free. Tipping $1-2 per drink from your cocktail server is appropriate. $5 is a good tip. Anything over $5 is a great tip.
Bellmen and Concierges offer a variety of services and tipping varies from service to service. You should pay $1-2 per piece of luggage transported to your room, with a minimum of $5. Tip appropriately if they obtain hard-to-get items for your trip. If you're not sure the appropriate amount, ask.
You should place $3-5 on your bed for your maid each morning. If you leave the room a disaster, more money is appropriate.
There's never a maximum for how much you should tip a stripper. If you've ordered a stripper in your hotel room for a bachelor party, she doesn't want $1 bills; she expects at least $20s. If you're getting a lap dance in a club, she'll give you a price up front for a dance. Typically it's $20/dance. If you take a stripper to a private room, $100 will get you three songs. An additional tip or buying her a drink is encouraged.
VIP Hosts provide various services including bypassing the lines into a club, sitting you at a table and introducing you to the cocktail server, making hard-to-get reservations, and booking tickets to events labeled as “sold out.” They may provide relatively brief contact time or they may watch after you for the entire evening. Tips vary, but $70-1,000 is appropriate based on the amount of time they spend with you and the amount of money that your group spends
The average tip in restaurants in the US is 15% of the bill, but 18-20% is more commonly given. Nevada tax is nearly 8%, so for a quick calculation, take the tax, double it, and add a little.
Salon and Spa Services
Whether you get a massage or a manicure, it is customary to tip a salon attendant 20% of the bill.
Again, tipping is the fuel that drives the Las Vegas service industry. It is not customary in many foreign countries, but in America, tipping is expected in the professions listed above. Enjoy!