SAUL LOEB/AFP via Getty Images

How Much to Tip Essential Coronavirus Workers During the Pandemic

How Much to Tip Essential Coronavirus Workers During the Pandemic

Leaving gratuity looks a little different now

SAUL LOEB/AFP via Getty Images

The coronavirus pandemic has changed a lot, and that includes gratuity and tipping. To help navigate this terrain, we enlisted the expertise of Diane Gottsman, a national etiquette expert, author of “Modern Etiquette for a Better Life” and founder of The Protocol School of Texas. Here’s what you should be leaving for all of the essential workers who are making your daily tasks easier.

Uber and Lyft drivers

Uber and Lyft drivers

Mario Tama/Getty Image News via Getty Images

If you are still relying on rideshare apps to get you to the essential places, consider going the extra mile. The standard is 15% to 20% depending on experience, but Gottsman suggests tacking on 5% to 10% during these times. That means if you’re charged a fee of $20 to travel to the grocery store, you should be tacking on a minimum of $3 with an additional $2 for a total of $25. According to Gottsman, the most important thing is to give extra when you can, but don’t empty your pockets when you can’t.

Grocery store employees

Grocery store employees

Joe Raedle/Getty Images News via Getty Images

You may want to show the employees of your favorite grocery store just how much you appreciate them, but it’s important to ask first. Gottsman says to check with the store before offering an employee a cash tip. “Most grocers don’t allow their employees to accept gratuity,” she said. “They pay them an hourly rate because they are not relying on tips to make an hourly wage. However, during this time, they may change their policy.”

Shipt and Instacart delivery drivers

 Shipt and Instacart delivery drivers

svetikd/E+ via Getty Images

Fifteen percent of the total bill is the minimum amount that should be left for Shipt and Instacart delivery workers. If your total comes out to $100, that’s a $15 minimum tip with a few dollars on top if you have more. “And if you feel compelled and have the extra money to spare, you can always add more,” Gottsman said.

Amazon and UPS delivery drivers

Amazon and UPS delivery drivers

Dia Dipasupil/Getty Images News via Getty Images

According to Gottsman, the proper way to tip Amazon or FedEx workers, especially those who have gone above and beyond, is to leave a few dollars, with $5 being the minimum. “Tipping $5 to $10 is a kind way to show your appreciation,” Gottsman said. “It’s all individual and based on what you can afford, but package delivery drivers are going to great lengths to keep you safe.”

Delivery drivers

Delivery drivers

TIZIANA FABI/AFP via Getty Images

“Just as you would tip in a restaurant, so should you when someone is delivering that food from the restaurant to your doorstep,” Gottsman said. “You should always tip the driver 20% of the bill or $5, whichever is higher. And if you use a coupon, tip on the full amount, not the discounted price.” If your finances allow for you to give more, Gottsman suggests tacking on a few extra dollars. And if you’re having food delivered to a sick friend, relative or someone in a retirement community, don’t forget to tip for that person.

Mail carriers

Mail carriers

Spencer Platt/Getty Images News via Getty Images

Per USPS' Employee Tipping and Gift-Receiving Policy, postal employees can receive a gift worth $20 or less from a customer per occasion, like Christmas. However, cash and gift cards that can be exchanged for cash can never be accepted. “If you want to show your appreciation to your mail carrier, consider leaving a little bag with a power bar and a bottle of water as a nice gesture of gratitude," said Gottsman.

Carryout or curbside pickup

Carryout or curbside pickup

Ezra Shaw/Getty Images News via Getty Images

Sticking to the 20% rule and adding a few extra dollars if it aligns with your finances is what you should do for carryout or pickup.

“If your order is relatively cheap, say $11, 20% is only $2. That’s pretty low, so, in that case, you’d leave $5,” Gottsman said. When you’ve got a few spare dollars, Gottsman suggests adding it on top of the original tip. And in the case that you use a coupon and receive a discount on your order, tip on the original amount before the coupon is applied. While tips are one thing you should be increasing, there are other ways you can save money during coronavirus quarantine.

 

More from The Active Times

How to Manage Coronavirus Anxiety, According to Mental Health Professionals

Fun New Skills You Can Learn At Home During Coronavirus Quarantine

Resume Tips: Red Flags Employers Look For

Words to Know to Understand the Stock Market Today

The Most Beautiful Libraries in the World