The holiday season is prime time to tip the people who make your life easier throughout the year.
Don't bust your budget to tip, but consider giving -- and even giving a little extra -- if you can manage it. Not only is it the season to do so, but you also may find a little bonus in it for you: A provider you tip generously will be more likely to treat you better in the coming year by, say, slipping you in for an appointment at the last minute or giving you extra services free.
And be sure not to tip unnecessarily. For example, "you don't tip 'professionals' that are on salary or charge large hourly rates and don't rely on gratuity as part of their income," says (Diane Gottsman
), national etiquette expert. Your doctors, lawyers, accountants and real estate agents might fall into this category. In fact, some high earners might be a bit insulted by such a gesture. If you feel compelled to thank them, a gift (such as home-baked goods, a bottle of wine or chocolates) is okay.
Look through Kiplinger's slide show to find out how much green you should tuck into each card -- and who else might be unable, unhappy or unwilling to accept the cash.
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: Test Your Holiday Tipping Etiquette 13 Holiday Money Wasters 12 Things NOT to Buy for the Holidays The opinions expressed are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Comcast.