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Should You Tip Appliance Delivery And Installation?

Nothing is better than finally getting your dream appliances delivered and installed into your home without you ever having to lift a finger. All this is thanks to the hard-working men and women that deliver your appliances and install them perfectly into your home. You might ask yourself, then, should their hard work be rewarded through tipping? Is this a common practice? Or could it get them in trouble? Below are a few tips to help you answer the question.

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In general, it's okay to tip your appliance delivery person through cash. Anywhere from $10 to $20 is an appropriate amount. However, this is not mandatory, and you do not have to tip the traditional 15% the cost of your appliance, much like you would at a restaurant. It is all a matter of preference and whether or not your appliance delivery person went above and beyond to give you the best customer service.

Two delivery men installing an oven - Should You Tip Appliance Delivery And Installation

Why Do People Tip?

Before learning how much to tip your appliance delivery person, it's important to understand why the act of tipping is necessary, and why many Americans choose to tip with no end in sight to this culture.

There are quite a number of reasons why Americans tip, but the most prevalent reasons include:

  • To help person giving service financially and supplement their income.
  • As a sense of duty to the appliance person.
  • To get better service next time.
  • To show off to that person.
  • To avoid being seen as stingy or other issues.

Why Would You Tip a Appliance Delivery Driver?

Senior woman telling movers where to put new big refrigerator in her kitchen

Just like you tip a server at a restaurant for giving you excellent service, it's also important to tip your appliance delivery driver if you feel they have given you exceptionally good service. In addition, you should also tip if your appliance delivery driver:

  • Went out of their way to help you
  • Transported your appliance up a high number of stairs
  • Helped assist you afterhours
  • Helped with other tasks like setting up your appliances 
  • Gave excellent customer service and communicated with you the entire trip

By tipping your appliance delivery driver in these instances, you're showing them that their efforts are appreciated, as well as helping encourage them to continue to provide that same customer service to other clients as well.

When Not to Tip

Delivering new refrigerator.

There are certain instances when it's not appropriate or recommended to tip. These include:

If Tipping is Against Company Policy

It's important to review a businesses' tipping policies before offering tips to employees. While you can certainly continue to tip your appliance delivery driver even despite company policy, be aware you might get some pushback or your delivery person might get reported and even fired should anyone find out about your tip.

For more information on tipping policies, call the customer service line for the appliance delivery company you are hiring, such as Sears, Best Buy, Home Depot or Lowes. These are just a few examples. 

If your Appliance was Damaged

If your appliance was damaged during the transport, it's generally not a good idea to tip, unless the damage was not the fault of the delivery driver. For instance, if your appliance was already damaged upon arrival and was defective due to the manufacturer, you can still tip your delivery person for the time it took them to delivery the appliance.

However, if you see your appliance delivery person drop your appliance, kick it, or otherwise use unsafe transportation practices, it's generally not a good idea to tip them. At worst, this money can be seen as going toward a replacement.

If Your Appliance Delivery Driver Was Rude

It's important to know that you are not obligated to tip. Many appliance delivery drivers work under a salary or hourly wage, and some even own their own companies and act as their own bosses as private contractors. Unlike waiters who rely on their tips due to the minimum wage differential, you don't need to tip your delivery driver if the service was rude, if they were late, or if you were generally unsatisfied with their service.

If There are Already Delivery Fees

If your company already has delivery fees and states that these go directly to the appliance delivery driver, you don't have to tip anymore than necessary unless you want to. You might want to tip more if your driver showed excellent customer service, for instance.

In addition, if your delivery driver states that he is working as a private contractor, you can still till them in addition to the rate which they are charging you.

How Much to Tip

Workers delivering appliance in kitchen

As a good rule of thumb, you should tip anywhere between $10 to $20 to your delivery person. This is because a delivery takes no more than an hour, from drop-off to installation, so this is a good base salary for one hour's worth of work.

It's generally not expected you will pay 15% of your appliance, like you would at a traditional restaurant for a meal. If your refrigerator is worth $3,000 for instance, 15% of this would be $450, which is not necessary at all for your appliance delivery driver, unless you have the money to spare!

Don't worry about meeting the traditional 15% tipping margin. Instead, tip your delivery driver closer to the $20 range if you believe they did an excellent job transporting and delivering your appliances, or closer to the $10 range for average service. 

What if There's More than One Appliance Person?

Two delivery men installing an oven

It's important to share the tip amongst your appliance delivery people equally. If there is more than one appliance delivery person helping with your delivery, you need to tip all of these people equally. You can also elect to tip a single leader, who will then determine which of their team members get the most or least amount of tips.

Some teams work better this way, but make sure to ask your appliance delivery team ahead of time for their preference. 

Do I Tip in Cash?

Yes! Most appliance delivery personnel will not carry with them a credit card reader or Square device to accept card payments. It's best to have cash on hand before your delivery person comes in order to help give them a fair time. Make sure to have smaller bills, since they might not be able to break larger bills like $100 or $50 bills. Asking your delivery driver to break a bill and then not giving them the full amount might also be seen as offensive.

Day Laborers

One more note about tipping, is that you should also tip day laborers who are helping move your appliances. These day laborers are protected under federal law and have rights that ensure they have:

  • Minimum wage paid
  • Overtime paid
  • Wait time paid, meaning the time it took them to wait to be picked up for a job
  • Access to safety equipment, such as equipment like these dolly straps on Amazon that can help lift heavy appliances

Day laborers can be found in a labor hall and are available for work to help move and transport your appliances. In addition to providing the above fair wages and following all the rights of day laborers, you can also feel free to tip them as well. 

Final Thoughts

In general, you can tip an appliance delivery driver anywhere between $10 to $20 if they gave you good customer service, delivered your objects on time, and went above and beyond their job duties to help you. However, you don't have to tip if it is against company policy or you feel the service was subpar.