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Old 06-19-2006, 06:34 PM
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We are using private tour guides in 2 ports and are wondering if we are supposed to tip them as we would a cruise employed tour guide. It's my understanding and expectation that one does not tip an owner of a business; afterall, they are keeping every cent of the fee charged. Both of the guides we are hiring are self-employed. Am I correct in my assumption?
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Old 06-19-2006, 06:56 PM
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Hi,
If you are happy with the service and feel like you were treated special, YES , tip the person who is making your vacation special. A few bucks shows a lot of appreciation. On the other hand, if you not pleased with the service a tip isn't earned. This is my opinion anyhow...
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Old 06-20-2006, 07:57 AM
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Quote:
Originally posted by lapappas:
We are using private tour guides in 2 ports and are wondering if we are supposed to tip them as we would a cruise employed tour guide. It's my understanding and expectation that one does not tip an owner of a business; afterall, they are keeping every cent of the fee charged. Both of the guides we are hiring are self-employed. Am I correct in my assumption?
Wow, I can't believe I'm reading this!

Do you tip cab drivers? Many of them are self-employed, or didn't that occur to you. What about bellmen at hotels or red-caps at airports??? Do you stiff them as well since they are "self-employed"!?!?

SonnyV - I'm surprised you didn't pick up on the "afterall, they are keeping every cent of the fee charged. Both of the guides we are hiring are self-employed." bit and just went on to say "if satisfied, blah blah blah".

AM I THE ONLY ONE FEELING OUTRAGED BY THE ATTITUDE OF LAPAPPAS????
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Old 06-20-2006, 09:07 AM
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First of all there's no need to get so ****y! I asked a question without malice. There is most certainly a difference between tipping an employee, who relies on tips for a good portion of their income, and a business owner/entreprenuer. Tipping a hotel bellhop, airport red cap, taxi driver, etc. is not quite the same and I certainly object to your assumption that I would stiff these folks. The private guide has his/her own company, advertises their service, sets their own fee ($800 in this case) and relies on happy customers referring their service to others. And as a "new cruiser" who has never used a self-employed tour guide before, I think I asked a reasonable question.

Tipping can often be confusing and there are no clear cut rules. But in general, restaurant owners, beauty salon owners, hotel owners, or any business owner should never expect a tip for providing good service but you should tip their helpful employees! There are many things that don't make sense, like why would some professions deserve a tip while others don't, like the medical professional or your accountant? I'd appreciate hearing others' viewpoints.
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Old 06-20-2006, 09:16 AM
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Lighten up, ChucksOK! lapappas is merely asking a question. No need to try to get everyone to gang up on him in some display of self-righteous indignation.
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Old 06-20-2006, 09:19 AM
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lapappas,

For tour guides it is always appropriate to offer a gratuity if you had a good time and the guide helped make it so. Even if they are the sole owner, there are lots of fees and licenses which cut into the profits. It is a low profit margin business and quite cut throat amongst the various tour companies.
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Old 06-20-2006, 09:23 AM
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In my humble opinion, I tip when I have been treated well. I tip my hair dresser, I tip my tour guides, etc. I don't tip my doctor or accountant, because they don't treat me well. I have to wait for hours in a doctor's office for an appointment that was made months before. I don't think my accountant does a good job either, so I try to do as much as I can on my own. Nonetheless, I have to pay their exhorbitant fees. If I spent $800 on a private tour and was treated accordingly, I'd probably throw in a little extra. If I didn't feel the excursion was worth what I paid, I think I'd leave things alone. Just my opinion. Best Wishes!!
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Old 06-20-2006, 09:35 AM
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Ah, you touched another nerve.

You see, I was a restaurant owner at one time (as a result of a misguided idea after retirement) and when I tended bar - was I still the owner - or was I the bartender (who had the night off and who had made more than me that week when you add his salary AND tips)???

Anyone in the "service" industry relies as much on tips for their bottom line as they do on the fees they charge because as Dave56 points out, if they doesn't keep the fees down, you will go to someone else.

When we were in India, we hired a private guide and hired a car and driver from the hotel. We not only paid the guide, we bought him and the driver lunch, mid-day refreshments and tipped them both 10% each of their respective cost. But then that's me!
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Old 06-20-2006, 09:51 AM
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Thank you all for your feedback. Penny3333-I enjoyed your answer. I was just asking a philosophical question about the different professions but you're right my accountant doesn't deserve it either. I think just about everyone has a service to offer but why some receive tips and not others? How about the nurse who stays by your mom's bedside or the cashier who points out a damaged item you were about to buy? I could go on, but I won't. Thanks again.
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Old 06-20-2006, 10:20 AM
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After this, I'll drop it.

In Egypt one is expected to pay baksheesh (sic) (a tip of sorts - more like extortion) to EVERYONE!

On a tour of Memphis, my brother had the misfortune to fall out of the bus and wrenched his back. We took him to the hospital in Cairo and discovered that if we did not pay baksheesh to each of the duty nurses, the several attendants that brought his food, the maintenance guy, etc. (the list really does go on and on ) they might "forget" to bring his meds, the food might not come from the "european" kitchen, the a/c might not work and so on. When you got on the (self-service) elevator, there is always someone to push the button for you (baksheesh). To get past the gate in front of the hospital - yep - baksheesh. Best of all - the doctor - oh yeah, big baksheesh! So folks, count your blessings in that we don't see that sort of thing here!
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buy, company, cruise, europe, guide, guides, line, owner, personal, private, tip, tipping, tips, tour, tourguide

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