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sdeutsch's avatar

Do you tip the guys at the car wash?

Asked by sdeutsch (4263points) August 15th, 2008

At our local car wash, after they drive the car through the Tunnel O’ Scrubbers, there’s one guy who dries the car off and cleans all the windows by hand. I’m never sure if I’m supposed to tip him – or if it’s even appropriate to tip him… Thoughts?

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26 Answers

robhaya's avatar

I always give them a few bucks.

GreatEscape's avatar

Yes I would. That has to be the worst job I can think of in the service industry. I’d only do a $1 or $2 though

sdeutsch's avatar

That’s sort of what I thought, but I never see anyone else tipping – seemed kind of strange… I’ll give them a few bucks when I go today… =)

ladytmerie's avatar


dragonflyfaith's avatar

I always do. The place I go to has a jar or a bucket. The entire car wash staff shares the tips.

bodyhead's avatar

I would definitely tip them. Tip everybody I say. They’ll tell you if they aren’t suppose to take tips.

Magnus's avatar

He washed my car, he didn’t duck my sick.

susanc's avatar

I’m with bodyhead. Tip everybody and if they’re not allowed to take them you’ll be told.
Now, about getting your dick sucked: I’m really surprised people
tip for that. What? For extra attention to detail? For a nice smile?
Who knew.

IchtheosaurusRex's avatar

Yeah, I usually give ‘em a five, when I take the car there. Most of the time, I go to the drive-through, and I’‘ll be damned if I’m gonna tip a robot.

bodyhead's avatar

Prostitutes are typically either independent contractors or in a loose union under patriarchal leadership (the pimp). For all independent contract type situations where the person you are to employ will keep a lions share of the money, I may not tip.

Most of the time when I tip, it’s because I know the person that I am tipping is getting screwed by the establishment that they work for. Prostitutes are in a funny situation where the more screwed they get, the more money they make. For car wash employees, the more screwed they get, the less money they make.

It never hurts to be nice and friendly no matter what the situation. If you can spend a couple dollars to brighten someones day, why not do it?

ninjaxmarc's avatar

depends on how good of a job they do.

Judi's avatar

My daughter was a waitress and she said that it was funny how people who could least afford it seemed to be the most concerned about leaving an appropriate tip. Sometimes people would come in and spend lot’s of money on drinks and wine and then park for an hour after after they were done with dinner and leave a dismal tip. I am a much nicer customer since my daughter was a waitress. I have always been a pretty generous tipper though.

dragonflyfaith's avatar

@Judi My first job was delivering pizza, it has changed my views on tipping completely. Since then, if I can’t afford to tip, I’m not going go at all.

Slightly offf topic, I hate when you go somewhere that has you pay first. 1. How can you tip if you don’t know how the service will be. 2. If they don’t give you a way to tip with your card and you don’t have cash, there’s always that “Oh crap” moment where you have to sneak out of the place. Of course those places are never the best dining experience anyway but still.

sdeutsch's avatar

@ Judi – I think the people who can least afford it are the ones who understand how valuable every bit of that tip is to the person they’re tipping.

FYI, I just went to the car wash and tipped the guy a few bucks – he was very appreciative. Apparently it doesn’t occur to a lot of people around here to tip them at all (either that, or they’re all having one of those “Oh crap” moments dragonfly is talking about – I know that’s usually what happens to me!)

osullivanbr's avatar

I’m always amazed at the difference between cultures. If I was to offer to tip anyone over here in my experience it’s received with an element of doubt almost. Kinda taken as what does this guy want, or what’s he up to? It’s just not normally done for the most part.

Maybe I just look like I’m up to something all the time too though :-)

sndfreQ's avatar

O still have a hard time tipping at Starbuck’s; I feel the burn after paying the “establishment” 4 bucks, then feeling like a cheapskate if I throw change (coins) into the tip jar and not a bill. Even worse, I feel like a Jackss when I have no cash but only a debit card and you can’t add gratuity onto the purchase. Don’t understand why they do that-sillyness.

marinelife's avatar

No, how weird. Stop the spread of tipping. It is madness. That is his job. That is not a personal service.

MarshallO's avatar

I don’t like to tip someone for just doing their job—especially since they never go out of their way to do anything extra for me—but I always feel “guilty” if I don’t, because where I live, everybody tips the car wash guys! The usual tip given is $2.00—which seems excessive for an $8.00 wash job (it makes the tip 25%!).

Also, considering how many cars the car wash guys can wipe-off in an hour, I imagine that they’re making pretty good money with all the tips they get plus the minimum wage they already earn!

sndfreQ's avatar

@Marshall-good point…I tip usually $2–3 on a $12.99 car wash!!

I would venture to guess that at my car wash, those guys complete a car every ten minutes; I gauge that based on 6 cars/hour, their minimum wage plus tips would be somewhere in the $23 / hour range! The only problem is that they split their tips among themselves (usually 1–3 guys working on a car at once), and their “chief” also gets a cut-the guy with the walkie-talkie. So it probably pans out to something more like minimum wage plus 1/3 of that take of $18, so my guesstimate: $9–11 / hr.

MarshallO's avatar

@sndfreQ: If you’re right, they’re not doing so good. $11.00 an hour is considered the minimum wage to even survive in this area (and not very well)!

Mr_M's avatar

I ALWAYS make sure the car wash guys actually SEE me put money in their tip box. What a waste of a tip if they don’t know you gave one!

sdeutsch's avatar

Unfortunately, my car wash doesn’t have a tip box – that’s why I wasn’t sure whether the tip was appropriate or not. I figured if it was, they’d have a box!

Judi's avatar

I give them a buck or two when I get give them the reciept to pick up the car.

Mr_M's avatar

My car wash has TWO tip boxes! One for the guys that “prep” the car before it goes through, and another for the guys that finish the car AFTER it goes through.

The box for the ones who prep the car NEVER sees my hand.

(I wonder if that has anything to do with why the trunk was left open last time?)

Judi's avatar

funny monkey!

proXXi's avatar

Yes you do, Let how good of a job you want next time to be your guide as to how much.

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