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.
The 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.
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?