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Should You Tip Your Junk Hauler?

By July 27, 2022 February 11th, 2023 No Comments

Few topics are quite as controversial in American culture and society as the question of tipping. How much should you tip at your local diner or sit-down restaurant? Our tipping culture has seemingly reached a tipping point in recent years, with hair salons, fast food chains, and coffee shops now frequently placing a tip jar at the front counter.

What about junk haulers, should you tip them too? Is it normal to tip junk haulers for their services, and if so, how much should you tip? Below we’ll take a look at what some people are saying about tipping junk haulers in the United States so you can make up your own mind:

Should You Tip Your Junk Hauler? Junk Removal Near Me

To tip or not to tip?

Pretty much all across America, tipping is baked into the culture – love it or hate it. For over a century and perhaps dating back to the 1840s, tipping was primarily done in sit-down restaurants and summer resorts “To Insure Prompt Service” (TIPS). Ironically, the custom was most likely imported from Europeans (where it is nowadays uncommon in most European countries).

As the hospitality industry boomed and more wait staff were required to serve hungry customers, many businesses opted to pay a reduced wage (or, in some cases, none at all) to waiters with the understanding that tipping would function as their main source of income.

Fast forward to today and you’ll be hard-pressed to find a restaurant in your own hometown that doesn’t have waiters that survive off tips and gratuities. But today, tipping has become a horse of a different color altogether, bleeding out from restaurants and extending to hotel staff, taxi drivers, and just about any other type of service you can imagine.

Tipping by region of the US

Although tipping is quite common in most states in America from coast to coast, how much you’re expected to tip can change drastically depending on factors such as the quality of service received, the type of service procured, and where you live.

Without ruffling any feathers (hopefully), the general rule of thumb in America is to tip restaurant waiters around 15%-20% of the total bill and $1-$2 per beverage from a bartender. Exceptionally good service is normally tipped at around 20% (perhaps more if you’re feeling generous), while anything below 15% is often considered insulting but may be appropriate for awful service.

You’ll also want to ‘read the room’ a little and tip as is customary for your location. Sit-down restaurants in Manhattan will probably expect a 20% tip, but a little breakfast joint in a small rural town might be happy with 15%, for example. When in Rome, do as the Romans do and try to be respectful wherever you happen to be.

How much is an appropriate tip for a junk hauler?

Now when it comes to junk haulers, should you be tipping them a flat 20% on the total bill? The rules (and they’re all unwritten rules, of course) tend to change when you move away from hospitality and towards service businesses like plumbers, gardeners, or junk haulers.

Junk removal businesses tend to pay their employees a fair, living wage, unlike restaurant staff, so tips are not required but they’re certainly welcome. Small, independent junk removal businesses near you might have no employees at all and instead simply operate as sole traders or ‘ma and pa’ businesses, so there’s no hourly wage to pay (they take a cut of the profits instead). In either case, tipping is not necessary to make up for a peanuts wage like it is in restaurants.

Flat tip amounts vs percentage tip amount

While restaurant tipping is generally quite standard (and even then, exactly how much is appropriate can certainly lead to arguments!), junk hauler tipping is a lot less established. Should you tip a junk hauler? If so, how much? It’s anyone’s guess really.

For example, it’s claimed that $5-$20 is appropriate for a furniture removal company. That’s about as close as it gets to ‘junk haulers’ who carry out similar tasks to furniture removal businesses. Others say a $10 flat tip is appropriate to pay for lunch after a good honest day’s work of heavy lifting and moving around junk. Others even say that offering a few cold beverages (especially in hot summer months) is appropriate as a ‘tip’ for their hard work.

Percentage tip amounts don’t really make too much sense for junk haulers, since the total cost of junk removal will have been quoted to you in advance and the junk removal business will have already baked in factors like wages, overhead, and dumping fees, for example. Moreover, junk removal can cost anywhere from around $100 for a few items to $1,000 or more for a full house cleanout. Keep it simple and pay a flat tip if you’re going to tip at all.

Should you tip your junk hauler?

Basically, it’s really up to you. You don’t have to tip a single dollar if you don’t want to, but a small junk removal business will certainly appreciate a few bucks here and there. If you really want a rule of thumb, leave a $10 tip to the haulers after a job well done. If you want to really make them happy, leave a helpful review of their business online so that other customers can find them in the future.

Junk haulers listed here on JunkGator operate independently and are committed to providing exceptional service, so you should never feel pressured into leaving a tip if you don’t want to. You’ll also get no-obligation quotes from junk haulers before you put a single dollar down. If you’ve hired a junk hauler on JunkGator and want to leave a little cash tip, they certainly won’t mind at all, but you’ll be getting the same great service whether or not you tip them.

Any junk, any time, any place

Start using JunkGator today and find genuine local junk removal businesses operating near you, anywhere in the United States. Get on the phone and call our friendly junk removal partners today and get rid of that junk today.



My role is to fact check original and engaging content published on the JunkGator website. I like to consider myself somewhat of an expert on eco-friendly waste management.