VIP October 2020

Catering Tip Question

Taylor, on February 12, 2020 at 1:15 PM Posted in Etiquette and Advice 1 5
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So I'm a bit lost on the catering tip. In our contract it states "Gratuity is not included in the pricing. We think our team does a wonderful job and we leave the gratuity to the customer's discretion." This is the cost breakdown within the signed contract:

Food w/tax: $3892.67

Labor w/tax: $227.33 ($35/hour for 2 hours) *3 waitstaff

Delivery Charge w/tax: 206.00

Total: $4326.00

The labor fee is for 3 attendants to maintain the buffet line (not serve), pick up plates, and scape/crate (not wash) them. What is the expected tip for this? I don't feel like 15%-20% of the total bill would be correct...Thoughts?


  • Gen
    Champion June 2019
    Gen Online ·
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    I would give each attendant $20-$30
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  • Mrs. S
    Master November 2019
    Mrs. S ·
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    I did 20% of the food bill before service and tax
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  • Felicia
    Savvy May 2020
    Felicia ·
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    My mom and I work for a caterer on the weekends, and honestly, the tip amounts vary so much from one reception to the next. We've received anywhere between $20-150 per person. I think the biggest thing to consider is how many guests you'll be having, because a reception for 45 vs 450 is a significant difference in the amount of running around the caterers will have to do. The average tip for say 150-250 people has been around $25-50 pp in my experience. Obviously this could vary depending on your area too. We're in southern Maryland. Hope this helps!

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  • Taylor
    VIP October 2020
    Taylor ·
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    Thank you for this!!! I don't want to be cheap but $900 split between three people to pick up plates and scrape food off of them just seemed a bit much. lol The catering company said that if I wanted to leave a tip on my card, they'd add it into the total but I didn't want to do that because who knows who would get the money then. I'll follow your advice and tip $50/server. Thanks for your adviceSmiley smile

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  • L
    Super May 2020
    Leslie ·
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    Usually with a buffet, I would say 10% of the price of the food. $400

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