A Little Something for the Maid

The past month has necessitated my spending several nights in motels, and I’ve got to admit, I’m not the happiest camper when traveling.

I like to get away, mind you. What I don’t particularly like is that hotels just aren’t home.

For one thing, the rooms are cramped. Bed, TV, and desk are jammed into one tiny space. There’s one door and one window; the decor’ is sterile, usually still life paintings or landscapes.

Room temperature isn’t home either. The best hotels have screens on the windows, letting guests have fresh air. Or ceiling fans in each room. But those AC/heating units are clunky, noisy, and probably filled with mold.

Nor is the lighting homey, especially in the bathroom.

How can I be expected to put mascara on in the dark??

It doesn’t seem to matter where you stay — hotels don’t feel as clean as home.

But the maids try. And they should be rewarded.

When I worked in pharmaceutical sales, my managers always instructed us to leave a dollar per person tip for every night we stayed in a hotel. Along with a little note to thank the maids for their service.

The housekeeping staff has a hard job — try hoisting those huge mattresses to change sheets; try cleaning toilets or bathtubs for several hours.

And it can be dangerous. They don’t know when some goon will try to jump them or leave a biting dog uncrated while they’re trying to clean.

Obviously, maids are being paid. That’s their job. (And in this day and age, they’re fortunate to have jobs!)

But every little bit helps, and I’ve never had one turn down the extra cash.

What about you? Do you leave a tip for the housekeeping staff, or is this a new idea?

14 thoughts on “A Little Something for the Maid

    • I’m wondering if this is an East Coast tradition, Kathy. My managers were from the New York area, but not many of the rest of us did this without being reminded!

  1. Okay, well now I’m going to sound like a cheapskate, but I’ve never tipped maids in hotels. (We tipped everybody and their uncle when we went on a cruise, though.)

    I had never heard of tipping in this instance. Now I’m going to have to check with some friends to see what they do. I have to know if the southwest is cheap, or if it’s just me 🙂

    • I don’t think it’s just the southwest, Janna. I’d never heard of tipping hotel maids before, either. In fact, I’d guess MOST of us hadn’t! And I’d be hard-pressed to say whether everybody complied (or just wrote it down as an expense anyway); and no, I didn’t do that!

  2. I don’t travel much…looks like I am the maid at these here digs, and a matter of fact, this maid hasn’t gotten tipped in a while…oh, wait I was only thinking cash!

    • It’s the nice thing to do, but I’m pretty sure they don’t expect it. However, not one has chased me down the hall or the elevator and insisted I keep my money!

  3. I know about the custom but don’t tip housekeeping at motels when it’s just my son and I traveling. When we use to travel with dogs and show them, I usually left “something extra” for housekeeping. Four Dobermans in one room adds extra clean up even if they are neater than the humans.

    • If your Dobermans are anything like my Sheltie, they’re a LOT cleaner and better-behaved than most people who stay in hotels! I don’t know why some people abandon their manners and habits when they’re traveling (the anonymity of it all, I guess). But yes, I suspect the maids appreciate a little extra!

    • Before my sales job, I hadn’t heard of it either. I always thought they were paid their wages and that was that. Obviously, a dollar won’t go very far these days, but if other people are tipping, maybe they’ll accumulate enough to splurge on lunch or something!

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