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Tipping the Butler at Sandals MoBay

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rok
Canada Bay...
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Tipping the Butler at Sandals MoBay

We tip regularly, discretely of course but I'm confused as to what is an appropriate gratitutity for butler service at Sandals Montego Bay. What would be appropriate for one or two weeks? Our budget if fairly limited and we don't want to expend our total gratituity allowance on the butlers. There are so many other worthy employees but we can't do everybody if butlers take it all. Guests swear by the service but none of 'em say what they gave dollar-wise in return. We want to be fair and need advice.

Ontario Canada
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1. Re: Tipping the Butler at Sandals MoBay

The amount to tip is totally up to you, but a common guideline mentioned on the forums and one we follow on our Sandals trips is $15-20 per butler per day. You may find that one butler does more for you than the other and so you could adjust the amount up or down as appropriate. We bring blank cards to write a personal note of thanks and we insert the cash gratuity in the card and give to each butler at the end of our stay...making sure to find out when they have their last shift with us, as we prefer to give it to each one personally with a hug of thanks.

Burlington, New...
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2. Re: Tipping the Butler at Sandals MoBay

Most of us who visit Sandals would recommend $10-$20 per day per butler. That would depend, of course, how much you used them. Prior to booking a butler suite you should take the tipping into consideration.

Ontario Canada
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3. Re: Tipping the Butler at Sandals MoBay

I will also mention for the benefit of first-timers to Sandals who might be reading this post that tipping is strictly forbidden at all Sandals resorts except for butlers (and possibly spa staff...this may have changed with the introduction of the 12.5% fee).

Tipping the staff goes against their employment contract. All staff (except butlers and possibly spa staff) receive a percentage of booked sales as a gratuity bonus. So in essence, you've already tipped. This ensures all staff are treated equally, not just the front line staff such as bartenders, servers, housecleaning. We've talked to mgmt at many Sandals resorts who have emphasized that any staff caught accepting tips are subject to discipline and possible job termination. Staff seen accepting tips (no matter how discreetly it is done) could possibly be reported by other staff or guests to mgmt, and the guest who provided the tip might never know that the staff member had faced discipline as the guest would be long gone home after vacation.

Naturally everyone will make up their own mind on the tipping issue. Hopefully they do so knowing the consequences to staff.

Rochester, New York
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4. Re: Tipping the Butler at Sandals MoBay

Well said Travelpair. To the original poster though, if you use the Red Cap luggage porters in Sangster airport or take the Sandals arranged shuttle from the airport to the resort both the porter and shuttle drivers deserve and expect reasonable gratuity. Neither are Sandals employees. Every now and again a Sandals guest reviewer will get all indignant in the post trip review because these folks deserve a tip.

Edited: 5:06 pm, October 27, 2012
rok
Canada Bay...
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5. Re: Tipping the Butler at Sandals MoBay

Thanks. I'm aware of the no tipping policy, but with respect, the subject at hand is butlers, not people supplying ancilliary services.

rok
Canada Bay...
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6. Re: Tipping the Butler at Sandals MoBay

Thanks Travelpair 55 and Dawn29.

Minnesota
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7. Re: Tipping the Butler at Sandals MoBay

The primary OP question was about butler tipping and was well covered by TP above, and we do the same when we have butlers. However, the topic of tipping others was also opened by the OP when it was mentioned that he does discretely tip other staff at Sandals.

I know that I have provided this info before, but here it is again, Sandals policy on tipping:

"“Each full time team-member is entitled to a share of the Gratuity each week; it is a percentage of the overall revenue which is shared.

Sandals probably operates one of the most generous Gratuity Programs in the hotel/resort industry in the Caribbean.

Our policy states that if you are caught taking additional tips from guests you will be dismissed. Some of our guests insist on giving tips, I always tell them not to because you jeopardize their jobs.

Though if you bring a gift for them (staff), once they get my (GM) permission they can accept it.”

We have been to different Sandals 20 times and have gotten to know many of the great Jamacian staff and would never jepordize their livelihoood and job by offering them a tip, discreetly or not. We know several staff members that have told stories of good friends that have lost their resort jobs because of being caught accepting tips.

Yes TP, everyone will need to make up their own mind, and hopefully they will do that with the best long-term interest of the great staff members in mind. Thanks for adding the Red Cap info SRFC, as they are not a part of the Sandals family and can accept a tip. You are also 100% right "because these folks deserve a tip.", and do definately get them from each and everyone of us that pay for a wonderful Sandals trip, per the policy mentioned above. Respect.

Edited: 10:06 am, October 28, 2012
8. Re: Tipping the Butler at Sandals MoBay

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