Vendors are to be tipped. For ours vendors, we budgeted the tip in. Instead of a percentage, we tipped a whole dollar amount. For instance the one photog, we gave him a $50 money gift card to use wherever he felt. Our caterer who had staff who served as servers, 100 tip to the cook, 25 each server and there were 4 and so forth. We placed all of the tips into visa/MasterCard money gift cards outside the payment for service. For the vendors who were exceptional, additionally we found out the places they love to eat or shop and put another 25 on a gift card. Our budget sheet included a line for tips. This may not work for everyone, but that's what worked for us.
Yes you should tip but first make sure that it isn't included in the price. A lot of ours were. Here is a general list of recommended tip amounts but you can obviously choose your own.
Wedding Planner- 10-20%
Hair and Makeup - 15-20%
Officiant - usually they just ask for a donation to the church which is usually around $100
Ceremony Musicians - $15-$20 each / Reception musicians - $25-$40 each / DJ - $50-$150
Photographer - $50-$200
Reception staff - 15-20%
Attendants (bartenders, waitstaff, bathroom attendants, parking attendants etc) - for the bar, 10-20% of the bill for them to split, for parking attendants $1 per car, bathroom attendants $1 per guest etc
Yes, vendors should be tipped. Some people say that if the vendor owns their own business, it’s not customary to tip, but we still chose to tip them.
Here’s how we tipped...Wedding Venue and Catering: $3k (they asked for a donation instead of tips) Rehearsal Venue and Catering: 18% (they also included a 25% service charge for “admin” fees that was around $2k) Afterparty Venue and Catering: 20% of bill Makeup and Hair Artists (both owned their own business, but brought assistants): 20-25% Photographer (owner his business): $300 after the wedding and an additional $200 after photos and album delivery; $75 for his second shooter for the day. Videographer (owned their own business): $200 after wedding and an additional $200 after the wedding DJ (Worked for a company): $300 Electric Violinist (owned her own company): $100 Wedding Coordinator (owned her own company): we had set aside $500 for her, but she messed up a lot of things at our wedding and didn’t take responsibility so we didn’t tip her. Guests Transportation: $50 per driver per way Wedding Party Transportation: included in cost but we tipped our drivers to the venue an additional $25 each Delivery for rentals, cake, etc: $10-20 per delivery person
Tip your vendors *after* the wedding when you have had time to assess if they did a good job or not. Do not tip before the service is done or for bad/mediocre service. A tip is for going above and beyond the call of duty, not for doing the job they were paid to do.