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portlander Dec 4th, 2008 08:39 AM

Tipping a self-employed guide
Hi - we have hired a guide for a private township tour in CT for the two of us. It is his business and he's self-employed with his own website offering these tours. Do I need to tip him and why? Shouldn't his fee be sufficient? Thanks.

thit_cho Dec 4th, 2008 09:22 AM

I should think in that situation no tip is necessary -- he has established a fee that he thinks is fair and reasonable.

I am generally opposed to the principle of tipping, preferring instead if institutions raised their fee and paid their workers a fair wage, but until that unlikely time, I recognize the need to tip certain employees, but I don't think there is the same need to tip an owner, like the person in your hypothetical.

safarichuck Dec 4th, 2008 09:58 AM

We faced a similar situation recently, also in Capetown. The guide was fabulous, went out of his way and well beyond the call of duty. We really wanted to show him our appreciation, however he refused our tip. Somehow I wasn't surprised. Do what makes you feel best, sometimes knowing that you made the offer and that it was refused, makes an already positive experience even better.

divine54 Dec 4th, 2008 10:01 AM

i would not go for the "regular tipping policy" but would hand out a gift and some cash if service and guiding was excellent!

why cut him out of the tipping thing as he dedicates his time, effort and car?

i am sure he will appreciate.


portlander Dec 4th, 2008 10:27 AM

Thanks. I'm inclined to not tip for the above reasons, but Div, I enjoy your input (as always). You have so much to offer us newbies!

Lynneb Dec 4th, 2008 10:48 AM

I would only tip if I felt that the service given was over and above that expected.

divine54 Dec 4th, 2008 11:26 AM

very much appreciated!
enjoy your travlles and happy landings!

ah, i just wanted to add: i would also differentiate between a "white" guide and a "black". i am much more hesitant to tip a white company owner than a black!
the blacks in africa are widely under priviledged and therefore we always are desperate to make a difference!


iPhela Dec 4th, 2008 11:33 AM

I am a guide/sole owner/one man tour operator and when doing what i consider a really good job on a days tour I am offered a tip my first reaction is to politely thank the guest and suggest that a gratuity is not necessary. However most visitors become quite insistent and under the circumstances it would be impolite to refuse but my personal opinion is using the example of a restaurant owner serving me my meal why should I feel obliged to give a tip. I am delighted when I am given sincere verbal appreciation for my work as it makes my effort so worthwhile and I certainly don't need cash to feel good.

divine54 Dec 4th, 2008 11:54 AM

i appreciate your input!

but just let us know whether you for how long you are in the business,colour of skin (not meant in any way racist but makes a HUGE difference - still! sad but reality!)and where are you working - area!

thx in advance!


cybor Dec 4th, 2008 01:31 PM

Looks like no one's taking your bait, divine.

I wouldn't tip an owner but I probably would buy them a drink if out or send a note later for good service.

annhig Dec 4th, 2008 01:37 PM

hi portlander,

I agree that a tip shoudn't be necessary, but sometimes, you want to mark very good service in some way. if that's the case, why not invite him/her for a drink or offer donation to charity of his/her choice?

regards, ann

divine54 Dec 4th, 2008 01:39 PM

thanks good cybor we are living in an (almost) free world where everybody is entitled to do whatever is considered appropriate or appreciative.

if a tóur guide makes hardly a living why shouldn't he be tipped? just because he "owns" a company?

i need solid reasons to refuse a tip.


cybor Dec 4th, 2008 02:03 PM

This business owner is hardly making a living and I don't accept tips.

Go bark or pi$$ up another tree.

atravelynn Dec 4th, 2008 02:15 PM

I tip for good service. If they decline I suggest they donate it to their favorite charity.

If they were the owner of A&K or Wilderness or an operation of similar size, I would not tip. I figure most self employed tour operators can use a little extra.

Tips have made a difference for me in the past, though I was not the owner of the company.

I also try to show genuine appreciation and gratitude for the service I've been given and not just hand over a perfunctory wad of bills.

I agree with SafariChuck, "Do what makes you feel best" when its the owner of a company.

iPhela Dec 5th, 2008 09:40 AM

I have been doing tours for 9 years, I am white and I cover Cape Town and the Western Cape.

divine54 Dec 5th, 2008 02:05 PM

Author: cybor
Date: 12/04/2008, 06:03 pm

This business owner is hardly making a living and I don't accept tips.

Go bark or pi$$ up another tree.

it's sad that you obviously don't waste a chance to expose yourself as a true lady ;-)

you must have enjoyed an excellent upbringing and education.

do me a favour - just ignore my posts. i am for certain are not interested in your opinion.


divine54 Dec 5th, 2008 02:06 PM

thx iphela


thit_cho Dec 5th, 2008 04:30 PM

<<if a tóur guide makes hardly a living why shouldn't he be tipped? just because he "owns" a company?>>

In that instance, wouldn't the tour guide/owner increase his fee? I assume an owner charges a fee that they deem acceptable, reasonable and appropriate. An owner sets the fee he charges.

cybor Dec 5th, 2008 05:07 PM

Your right, I'll use more lady like terms next time when I refer to you as a silly little pot stirrer or an unsavory bigot.

I'll make sure to tell that to all the others who've you've perturbed and insulted with your unsavory details on numerous threads lately.
I'm sure the Jews, blacks, women, gays and Americans that you've taken pot shots at lately will be more than willing to tone it down for your tender ears.

Or maybe not......

Femi Dec 5th, 2008 05:30 PM

Not sure what's happened in the past, I get the feeling I'm missing something, but in this post I found the original question about race to be relevant.

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