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News Article

Do you tip the postie at Christmas?

Published 8 December 2014 by

After all, your postman probably has a lot more to carry in the lead-up to the festive period what with all the presents and cards they have to deliver. They may even find themselves making two trips a day to your letter box.

However, less than a quarter of Brits plan to reward their postal worker for all their hard work this Christmas.

The Christmas box is empty

Do you know why Boxing Day is called ‘Boxing Day’? Well, it’s thought the name comes from the Middle Ages’ custom of masters presenting their workers with a gift at Christmas to thank them for all their hard work. In more recent times, this has evolved into the custom of showing our gratitude to service providers with cash or a homemade gift.

But new research* conducted on our behalf has revealed that fewer than half of respondents say they tip their tradespeople at Christmas. In fact, the postman was the most likely to get tipped – unlike milkmen, window cleaners and bin men.

Just one in five respondents claim they give their hairdresser a tip at Christmas – although they may be seeing more of their stylist if they have seasonal parties to get ready for – and less than one in 10 tip their milkman. Meanwhile, just 12% of people tip their window cleaner at Christmas – despite all those icy ladders they have to clamber up and down to get your windows shining – and only 14% tip their bin men.

Say it with money

Another Christmas custom that appears to be waning is that of rewarding service providers with a non-cash gift like food or drink. After all, you may not have enough money to tip your hard-working tradespeople, but you could still show your gratitude by leaving out some homemade biscuits or cake.

However, around just one in 20 respondents said they planned to leave a non-cash tip at Christmas. The majority of tippers (83%) said they would give away up to £10 to their tradespeople.

Goodwill for all men

We all know that budgets are tight, and especially at Christmas time when there’s presents to buy for friends and family, a festive feast to purchase and prepare and extra travel to see loved ones across the country. It’s no wonder tipping your postie may be the last thing on your mind!

However, the fact that half of respondents are still keen to reward their tradespeople suggests that Christmas is still definitely a time of showing goodwill to all men. And if your budget is tight and you can’t afford to give them cash, a biscuit and a hot cup of tea could be just as welcome.

*OnePoll questioned a nationally representative sample of 2,000 adults aged 18 and over between 24th September and 3rd October 2014.