To Tip or Not To Tip? Movers and Furniture/Appliance Delivery People

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If you’re planning to move and don’t own many belongings, it’s possible to do it on your own or move with the help of a family member or friends. However, most individuals require professional help from movers when they are moving to ensure the safety of their belongings. 

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Once everything has been delivered to your new residence, it is customary to tip to show appreciation for the job well done. But how much should you tip? Further, if you ordered a new appliance, like a refrigerator, should you tip the delivery people?

Here’s what the tipping standard looks like for movers and those who help deliver and set up furniture and appliances, according to experts.

What Is the Tipping Standard?

James Burati, moving expert and chief sales officer at 1-800-PACK-RAT, said tips are not mandatory for your moving crew, but it is a nice way to show your appreciation.

Similar to tipping at a restaurant, Burati said tipping rates for movers tend to be standard across the country with little variation depending on your origin or destination location. The tip is based mainly on a percentage of the total cost, so inflation will have likely already impacted the total cost of the move.

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Tipping for Local Moves

How much should you tip if you are moving somewhere local, like moving from one part of a city to another? Burati recommends tipping around $5 per hour and per person if you feel like the movers did a good job and were careful with your belongings. 

“You could go a little higher if it was a more challenging move, such as large or heavy furniture pieces or if there were a lot of stairs or long distances,” Burati said.

Tipping for Long-Distance Moves

What if you are moving somewhere much further away, like out of state and require moving assistance? 

If you are using one crew from start to finish, Burati recommends tipping around 15% of the total moving cost. The tip during a long-distance move could be a large expense depending on the distance. 

You may tip more if the team went above and beyond with packing or unpacking your items, disassembling or assembling large furniture, distributing boxes and items to each room of your new home, or did anything else you feel showed they put extra effort and care into their service.

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Factors To Consider When Tipping Movers or Delivery People

When tipping your movers or delivery people, Joey Sasson, vice president of sales & logistics at Moving APT, recommends keeping the following factors in mind.

  • The size of your move. “The amount you tip should be directly proportional to the size and difficulty of your move,” said Sasson. “If you have lots of heavy furniture, like pianos, or your new home is far away, your movers will definitely appreciate a higher tip.”
  • The quality of the service. Did the movers go above and beyond to ensure the move was smooth and stress-free? Consider if they show up on time, complete the work within the time frame and take extra care with your belongings. If all of the above is fulfilled, a higher tip is warranted.
  • Your budget. Remember while tipping is not required, it is certainly appreciated. “A smaller tip is perfectly acceptable if you’re on a tight budget,” said Sasson.

“Generally, most people tip $20 to $40 per mover and increase the amount depending on the above factors,” said Sasson. “But, of course, you could always tip more if you have some wiggle room in your budget.”

Final Notes on Tipping

While tips are usually not included as a line item in your moving quote, Burati said it is always best to review your quote prior to your move. This allows you to understand all the charges. 

Burati also recommends making sure you hire a reputable company. If you have any questions at any point, reach out to the company well in advance to get clarification.

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About the Author

Heather Taylor is a senior finance writer for GOBankingRates. She is also the head writer and brand mascot enthusiast for PopIcon, Advertising Week’s blog dedicated to brand mascots. She has been published on HelloGiggles, Business Insider, The Story Exchange, Brit + Co, Thrive Global, and more media outlets. 

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