How Much Should I Tip My Movers?

Of course, no law requires you to tip your movers, but you might want to inquire about their pricing structure to give you an idea of how much to offer. If your movers did a crappy job, why bother giving them a tip? However, if they did a splendid job that meets or exceeds your expectations, why not commend them by providing a few dollars?

After all, movers work hard. They carry your stuff back and forth. They even put their lives at risk of falling down your stairs or being crushed by your heavy furniture. They would deserve recognition for their effort, mainly if they carried tons of your stuff.

If it is your first time hiring a moving company to move your stuff, you might be asking how much you should give to your movers as a tip. Here are some pointers on how much to give to the athletic movers.

Giving a Tip Is Not a Requirement

As mentioned, giving a tip is not a requirement but expected. It is not a surprise because the movers’ job is difficult. They are the ones who are at risk of breaking their bones and becoming exhausted by moving your stuff back and forth. That is why even though it is not a requirement to tip, it is the best way to recognize them for a job well done.

However, there are times that the moving company already includes it on its estimates. That is why you should check the breakdown of the total amount that you need to pay. If it is already a part of it, there is no reason to give an additional tip because the movers will not expect it.

Some moving companies include 20 percent of the total amount as a tip. Some put it in a list in a vague way. That is why it is also crucial to determine if it includes the service charge on your payment.

If you see it, ask the company what this service charge covers, because it may include the gratuity.

If the moving services you hire comes from a small or starting company, the owners are also among the movers most of the time. In this case, you can expect that there is a chance that they will include the gratuity on their estimates, and you do not have to give a tip.

However, most moving companies do not include gratuity on their estimates. If this is the case, the movers expect some small bucks from you.

There are some instances when you should not give them a tip, and you will be happy not to by considering the following:

  • If the movers did a careless job of breaking your furniture and possessions
  • When the movers cheat by sluggishly moving when you are paying them at a per hour rate
  • If you one or a few of your items are missing, and you can prove that it is the movers’ fault
  • If the movers are disrespectful
  • If they show up outside the given schedule
  • If they show up late
  • If they leave a mess that came from them, such as cigarettes or candy wrappers
  • If they cheat by suddenly increasing their rate without giving you an option to back down
  • If they left some of your stuff

However, give them some considerations for unavoidable circumstances. For example, if the movers show up late because they trudge through a storm or any similar situation, you should give them some credit for appearing at your doorstep.

Standard Percentage

Every move can put you in a unique situation.  That is why there is no rule on how much tip you should give to the movers.

If you think that the movers deserve your tip, you might be asking next how much you should give them. The common unwritten law on how much you should provide for any service is 5 to 20 percent of the total cost. Some people would like to stick to the 10 percent, but it still depends on some factors.

These factors include the number of hours, cost of the total amount, the value of the percentage for the tip, and others.

That is why it all boils down to judging based on the situation.

The easiest way to judge it is by starting at 10 dollars per person for every 4 hours. If you do it this way, it means that your tip per person should be at 20 dollars for the eight hours of their service.

If you are still having a hard time judging how much you should give, answer these questions to yourself.

  • Are they friendly?
  • Did they arrive on time?
  • Are they respectful?
  • Did they do their job well by transporting everything to your new home and taking good care of them?
  • Did they go for the extra mile to provide a delightful service, such as packaging your stuff or helping you on something that is not already a part of their job?

How to Distribute the Tips

This decision is up to you. The standard is to distribute it evenly among the team.

However, if you judge the distribution by their performance, it will be unfair for the member who put the extra mile on doing the job. If it is the case, you can slip off some additional amount to this person privately.

Considerations on How Big You Should Give

Now that you know that you should give 5 to 20 percent of the total amount, you are probably asking if you should 5 percent or 20 percent? Again, it all boils down on the circumstances. You can rely on the following for considerations:

  • The number and length of your stairs.
  • The number of heavy furniture that they should carry
  • The extra mile the movers exert to move your furniture safely.
  • Other treats you gave them, such as an expensive hearty lunch
  • How many teams are working together
  • The differences and difficulty of tasks each mover does
  • The team’s performance as a whole if it meets your expectations.
  • Other services they did that are not the scope of their job, such as opening a bottle of jam for you.

Mode of Payment

The standard mode of payment for handing tips is in cash, and it is the most convenient. It allows you to distribute it equally among the movers.

Cash is not a standard mode of payment nowadays. That is why you should consider going to the bank before the moving day so that you have enough to hand out to the movers.

However, if you forget to go to the bank and does not have any cash on hand, you can hand the foreman a check and ask him to distribute the tip with the others. It also allows you to record your payment.

There are moving companies that have a line where you can send your tip. If it is the case, you can use your card for payment.

Other Etiquette That You Should Know

Not because you are a customer it does not mean that you can treat the movers as crap. Even though it is their job to move your heavy stuff from one place to another, it does not mean that they are robots who do not have emotions and needs. That is why you should treat them well as you want them to do to you.

Because they are humans, they physically get exhausted from doing their job. That is why they will appreciate it if you give them something to drink or eat.

If they have to work for long hours, you should buy them lunch or dinner. Make sure not to let them skip a meal during the hours that they work for you. It is because they need to replenish the energy that they lost from doing their job.

You should also consider the food that you will give them. The best options are pizza, fried chicken, burgers, sandwiches,  donuts, or anything that you can easily divide or give to a group.

Aside from the food, it would help if you also consider giving them beverages. Aside from energy, the movers need hydration. It will be helpful if you have a pitcher and glasses ready so that the movers who feel thirsty can quickly grab a glass of water.

They will also appreciate it if you give them a coffee or tea during cold weather and cold juice or sports drinks on a hot weather day.

Giving them food and treating them well will go the extra mile. The movers will feel motivated to do their job better.

Aside from the treats, you should also be professional. Be present and be on time.

Prepare the inventory of your possessions. Get your possessions ready by wrapping the fragile ones in bubble wrap and removing the extras attached to your furniture.

Ensure that everything is ready when the movers arrive, so you will not waste both of your time.

Moving out is expensive. It includes the cost of new furniture, house, and other must-haves. Besides, hiring a moving company is costly.

However, even though hiring a moving company may be expensive, most of the total cost will not go to those who do a hard job. That is why giving tips is the least that you can do to appreciate the movers’ efforts for the job done well.