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tipping the massage therapist?

I recently visited a massage therapist for the first time, with very good results. Since she performs a personal service I would think that a tip is expected in addition to the fee, which isn't that large. However, she rushed off after the massage (to her next appointment?) so I had no way to tip her directly, and when I reached the front desk 3 other masseuses were having a big tiff about schedules and rooms, so.....

I'm thinking that I should drop back by and leave a tip for her. My questions are: Does one in fact tip the masseuse? And assuming so, how much/what percentage is appropriate? I am very happy with her work.

Mon. Jan 21, 9:33am

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never been to a massage therapist myself, but I'm sure she'd love a tip from time to time. How about since you liked her work and are planning on going back, save it for a good occasion. Like around a holiday or the end of winter or whenever seems like a good time. It may boost her day.

Monday, January 21, 2008, 9:53 AM

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Is this someone you will be going to on a regular basis? If so a tip every time isn't usually done, but if your are going to her maybe once a month and her fees are low tip her at least 15%. First ask the about policy on this some places don't allow tipping. If in fact you see her say every week then tip her occasionally and at Christmas give her a fat tip, like 1-2 x her normal fee.

My husband gets a massage every week, by the same person for the last 10 years, he doesn't tip her but at the end of the year he gives her about 4x what her regular fee is.

Monday, January 21, 2008, 9:57 AM

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From the inside

Since your MT works for an employer and is indeed a personal service provider much as a hairdresser, yes, you tip along the standard lines of 15-20%. The small percentage of the fee that we get is not of itself enough to make the job worthwhile, since massage isn't something we are physically capable of doing for 8 hours a day.

As for your therapist rushing off, it sounds like the place you went is either very poorly run (based on the arguing about rooms and scheduling), or they run on a detrimentally tight timetable. Sucky places give you, the customer, a 55-minute hour and the therapist has 5 minutes to clean the table, wash her hands, go to the bathroom, that sort of thing. That type of set-up almost forces the therapist to sneak an extra minute or two off your paid-for time.

I work independently now, and tipping is optional since I have no employer taking a 50-70% cut. About 2/3 of my clients choose to tip me - my rates are at the low end of average to accommodate this. What's the point of tipping the self-employed, you might ask? I bend over backwards to make room in my schedule for you, I "accidentally" run 5 minutes past the time you paid for if I can swing it, and if I have 4 voicemails to return after a session, who do you think I'm going to call back first?

Monday, January 21, 2008, 10:29 AM

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Massage ears

Massage ears


Friday, August 15, 2008, 2:15 AM

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yes, you tip your massage therapist, just like you would tip your hairstylist, manicurist, etc.

Friday, August 15, 2008, 8:08 AM

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Yes, you tip a masseuse. Especially if it is someone you go to fairly regular. (If it's super regular---like weekly, you can tip once a month or so, about the cost of a session would probably be good, perhaps a little less.) Anywhere to 10-15% if you're only occasional.

Friday, August 15, 2008, 6:51 PM

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