Marriott Wants You To Tip The Housekeeper

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Marriott is starting a new initiative this week called “The Envelope Please” asking guests to leave a tip for the housekeeper. The envelopes are going to be placed on the pillow of the over 160,000 Marriott rooms in the USA and Canada across the Marriott, Courtyard, Residence Inn, J.W. Marriott, Ritz-Carlton and Renaissance brands.

Screen Shot 2014-09-15 at 1.16.39 PMThe name of the person who cleans the room will be written on the envelope along with a message: “Our caring room attendants enjoyed making your stay warm and comfortable. Please feel free to leave a gratuity to express your appreciation for their efforts.”

This initiative was thought up by former California First Lady Maria Shriver.  She was concerned that housekeepers, mostly women, are invisible and may not be as well tipped or compensated as other front line employees such as bellmen and concierges.

Marriott employs almost 20,000 positions within the US and Canada. Their schedules vary according to season and hotel occupancy rates.

So how much should you tip?  Marriott International CEO Arne Sorenson says $1 to $5 a night, depending on room rate, with more for suites and higher priced rooms.

Bottom Line:
Tipping is a sticky wicket.  While it’s nice to reward the housekeepers with a little ‘something extra’, others argue that companies, such as Marriott, should be compensating housekeepers fairly and not soliciting for tips. What are your thoughts on leaving a tip for the housekeeper?


Editorial Note: Opinions, analyses, reviews or suggestions expressed on this site are those of the author’s alone, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed.

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  1. So I stay at the Ritz Central Park for $1000/night and we are to believe that the room being cleaned is a service requiring a tip?
    Can Marriott Inc not afford to pay their staff?

  2. More corporate BS. Pay you’re employees a living wage and negate the need for tipping. Win for your employees and win for your PR department!

  3. I will not be participating in Marriott working their way to paying their employees less. This is a cheap scheme and it really only works the opposite way as intended, at least for me.

  4. Since I always leave a tip for the housekeeper, who has a thankless job, I don’t mind Marriott’s little reminder. It sure beats SPG’s approach of bribing guests with extra points if they forego housekeeping services, which, IMHO, is a thinly veiled attempt to reduce staff and put more people on the unemployment line.

  5. I’ll start tipping the maids just as soon as the hotel starts tipping ME on days when I forego housekeeping. I’d always be willing to take a break on the room rate in exchange for less frequent housekeeping.

    If they want to pay me a few bucks on everyday I do NOT need housekeeping, that would be fantastic. Works great at the LVH. Then I’ll start tipping the housekeepers.

    BTW, this doesn’t save Marriott money. Most Marriotts are franchises. Lowering wages would help the hotel owner, not Marriott. What Marriott the corporation gets out of this announcement is pure marketing. They just signed on for another “cause” in the hope that the cause’s supporters will be loyal to Marriott.

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