Having a locksmith come to your rescue, whether it’s to help you get back into your home after locking yourself out or to rekey your locks for extra security, is a huge relief. While you may already plan on paying their service fee, you might be wondering if you should provide an additional cash gratuity. Tipping is certainly not required, but it can be a nice way to show your appreciation for their quick, professional service. This guide covers everything you need to know about tipping locksmiths.
When to Tip Your Locksmith
Tipping your locksmith is completely optional, but there are certain situations when it’s commonly expected:
- For emergency services – If a locksmith comes out late at night, in bad weather, or any other less than ideal situation to help you, a tip is a friendly gesture.
- For exceptional service – Did the locksmith provide extra fast service, stay late, or go above and beyond in some way? A tip recognises their efforts.
- For repeat or regular service – If the same locksmith assists you multiple times, a small tip each time shows you’re a regular satisfied customer.
- During the holidays – Many people tip more generously around the holidays, following seasonal tipping etiquette. Locksmiths often appreciate holiday tips just like other service providers.
If the locksmith seems to do the bare minimum or provides slow, frustrating service, it’s fine not to tip. Tips are always at your discretion.
How Much to Tip a Locksmith
So how much should you tip your locksmith? Here are some general tipping guidelines:
- For standard, satisfactory service, tip 10-15% of the total bill. A $10-15 tip on a $100 service call is a nice token of appreciation.
- For emergency or superior service, tip 15-20%. If the locksmith charges $200 for rushing over late on a Sunday to help you, $30-40 is an appropriate tip.
- For small jobs under $50, it’s fine to round up to the next $5 or $10 increment when paying your bill. So on a $45 job, pay $50 total for a $5 tip.
- For higher-end jobs over $500, such as installing new locks or a security system, tip $30-50 or so. Reward them for what’s likely an hour or more of labor.
- Around the December holidays, it’s customary to tip 20% or more to service workers like locksmiths as a holiday gift. So increase your tip amount during this peak season.
As you can see, the amount you tip your locksmith depends on the total cost of service and the level of difficulty involved. Be sure to tip in cash so the entire amount goes directly to them.
Factors That Determine Tip Amount
The main factors that determine how much you should tip your locksmith include:
Time and Effort
Did the job take 30 minutes or 2 hours? Did they have to make multiple trips or work late at night? Extra time and effort deserves a higher gratuity.
Quality of Service
How was their overall service? Did they impress you with their skill, efficiency, and professionalism? Superior work deserves richer tipping.
Difficulty of Job
Opening a basic door lock is much easier than drilling out a jammed deadbolt or installing an electronic security system. Tackling tough assignments means the locksmith earned a larger tip.
If the locksmith came quickly to your rescue in an emergency situation, especially outside normal hours, show extra appreciation in your tip amount.
Regular customers often tip consistently each time, especially if they rely on the same local locksmith for service. Recurring work deserves ongoing tips.
More Tipping Tips for Locksmiths
Beyond the basic tip amounts above, keep these other locksmith tipping tips in mind:
- Tip individuals, not companies – Your tip should go directly to the specific locksmith who did the work, not the broader company. This rewards great individual service.
- Tip in cash – Cash tips let the locksmith receive your full gratuity without any being lost to taxes or fees.
- Tip immediately – Give your tip at the time of service, either when paying your bill or right after the work is complete. This ensures they know your tip is sincere.
- Include tip in payment – When paying with a card, select the option to add a tip beforehand so your locksmith receives it promptly. Don’t delay paying a promised tip.
- Ask if unsure – If you’re unsure what to tip, ask the locksmith. Something like “What’s the typical tip for this kind of service?” can clarify local expectations.
Showing your locksmith appreciation through a thoughtful tip will give them satisfaction knowing their good work didn’t go unnoticed.
Questions About Locksmith Tipping
You might still have some common questions about tipping practices for locksmiths. Here are answers to some frequently asked questions:
Do you tip locksmiths?
You don’t have to tip your locksmith, but choosing to tip 10-20% is a common practice to thank them for their time and effort.
Do you tip locksmiths cash or on card?
Cash tips are preferable so the locksmith receives the full amount. But adding a tip when paying by credit card is fine too.
How much is a good locksmith tip?
A good tip is generally 10-20% of your total service bill. For small jobs under $50, $5-10 is appropriate. For big jobs over $500, $30-50 is a respectable amount.
Should you tip more for emergency locksmith?
It’s customary to tip an emergency locksmith 15-20% since they likely came outside normal hours, quickly, and saved you from a stressful situation.
Do locksmiths expect a tip?
Most professional locksmiths don’t explicitly expect a tip, but they certainly appreciate one when given. Tips are a welcome show of thanks.
Do you have to tip a certain amount?
There’s no requirement to tip a locksmith any specific amount. It’s completely up to your discretion. Let the service experience guide your tip amount.
When Not to Tip Your Locksmith
While it’s generally expected that satisfied customers will tip their locksmiths, you shouldn’t feel obligated if the service was unsatisfactory, including:
- The locksmith damaged your locks or property.
- They showed up late without contacting you.
- They seemed unprofessional, rushed, or sloppy.
- You were overcharged or price gouged.
- The work had to be redone or fixed shortly after.
- Poor customer service overall.
Hold off on tipping for mediocre or bad service – that sends an important message. But definitely tip your locksmith for quality work and a positive experience!
Additional Locksmith Appreciation Ideas
Beyond monetary tipping, there are other thoughtful ways to show your locksmith you appreciate their great service:
- Give a positive online review – Help them build their reputation online by leaving five-star reviews on Google, Yelp, and other sites. Be specific about what they did well.
- Refer them to friends – Pass their name and number along to friends, neighbors, and coworkers who need locksmith services. More referrals earn them more business.
- Send a thank-you note – Jot a quick thank-you card or email to the company praising your locksmith’s good work. This personal gesture can really make their day.
- Offer them cold drinks/snacks – On hot or busy days, surprise them with bottled waters, sodas, baked treats, or snacks while they work. It’s a thoughtful touch.
- Give gift cards – Around the holidays, you can give your locksmith gift cards to local coffee shops, restaurants, gas stations, or stores as an extra thank you gift.
The Value of Showing Appreciation
Whether you give a cash tip, write a positive review, or show thanks in some other way, acknowledging your locksmith’s efforts is important. Locksmiths provide a hugely valuable service. Rewarding them for prompt, professional work encourages excellent service and strong customer relationships. With the right locksmith, you’ll gain security, convenience, and peace of mind. So remember to tip generously for a job well done!