How much to tip our outfitter? - Mountain Buzz
 



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Old 07-08-2017   #1
 
Albuquerque, New Mexico
Join Date: Jul 2017
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How much to tip our outfitter?

We're doing a fully outfitted grand Canyon trip, launching in just a few days. Would appreciate any thoughts on how much tip would be appropriate. We're already spending a lot... But they're working hard to get things right for our group. They have several folks involved with our trip- from Shuttle drivers to food packing and logistics. Thanks!

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Old 07-08-2017   #2
 
k2andcannoli's Avatar
 
Denver, Colorado
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They'd get a heartfelt dirtbag "Thanks y'all" from me.
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Old 07-08-2017   #3
 
vernal, Utah
Paddling Since: 1986
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Dana, as an outfitter that provides this same service on Dinosaur and Desolation canyon, I would like to comment on your question regarding tipping. There is a lot of time, effort, blood, sweat and tears that goes into making a multi-day river trip for up to 25 people possible. If you consider that you tip a waitress that takes your order, serves a few drinks, brings the food to your table and checks on you once or twice 10-20% then you should consider tipping an outfitter that spends hours to make your river trip perfect, the same percentage especially if the trip, gear, food and shuttle goes without a glitch. I'm sure everyone involved with your trip will appreciate the gesture. We all work in a seasonal job and any additional income is welcomed. On the same note, beer and weed to shuttle drivers is not acceptable especially if you live in a where weed is not legal. And tipping drivers beer does not make any sense just leave the $5 that is spent on the beer in cash.

Thanks for asking this question and I hope your group experiences the "trip of a lifetime."
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Old 07-08-2017   #4
 
Aurora, Colorado
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As a guide on trips like that, I wholeheartedly agree with Mel. Guides are often up before the sun, firing coals and coffee, work all day, and are often the last to leave the fire, making sure everyone has made it to bed safely. 16 hour days are the norm. With those hours the hourly rate of pay can be pretty low. The comparison to the waitress who in total spends 5 minutes on you and gets 10-20% is apt.

I have heard people say things like, well, the trip cost so much we couldn't afford to tip, or didn't want to spend any more. My feeling on that notion is, you wouldn't go out to a fancy dinner, and then just not tip because the bill was $100/person. If you can't afford the dinner plus tip, don't go out to eat.

K2- is you real name Mr. Pink?
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Old 07-08-2017   #5
 
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Denver, Colorado
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Mr. Pink? Afraid not, they called me tater salad. Joking... my name is Jesse.
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Old 07-08-2017   #6
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Tabernash, Colorado
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Good responses to your question from Mellanie and climbdenali, I would whole hartedly agree.
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Old 07-08-2017   #7
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Bellevue, Idaho
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Originally Posted by climbdenali View Post
As a guide on trips like that, I wholeheartedly agree with Mel. Guides are often up before the sun, firing coals and coffee, work all day, and are often the last to leave the fire, making sure everyone has made it to bed safely. 16 hour days are the norm. With those hours the hourly rate of pay can be pretty low. The comparison to the waitress who in total spends 5 minutes on you and gets 10-20% is apt.

I have heard people say things like, well, the trip cost so much we couldn't afford to tip, or didn't want to spend any more. My feeling on that notion is, you wouldn't go out to a fancy dinner, and then just not tip because the bill was $100/person. If you can't afford the dinner plus tip, don't go out to eat.

K2- is you real name Mr. Pink?
I believe OP is talking about something like a painless private or other private trip 'outfitted' by someone, not a guided river trip. I specialize in reading between the lines but might have it wrong.

I am generous and up front in tipping shuttle drivers $20 minimum for a shorter shuttle, $30 to $40 for longer and we tipped our bus driver $150 after a particularly long and challenging bus trip ( they pick us up with a nice newer school bus with a big double axle trailer that we put 9 rafts and 6 kayaks on).

I have never had anyone do entire logistics for any type of trip I have been on so not sure about that. If you feel they knocked it out of the park send them a thank you after the trip of $20 to $50 per person. If they are delivering and pickup up rafts ( if it is that kind of trip ) you can tip those guys at the end and send something to the company for the rest of the crew.

If they forgot coffee....they get nothing.
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Old 07-08-2017   #8
 
Aurora, Colorado
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Ahh, Carve I think you're right after retreading the OPs post. My eyes must've still been half closed this morning.

Jesse- no offense intended. I was joking about Steve Buscemi's character from Reservoir Dogs not tipping.

I don't have much experience with painless private type trips, but Carvedogs numbers sound pretty good.


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Old 07-08-2017   #9
Dipshit with the most.
 
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Bellevue, Idaho
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Quote:
Originally Posted by climbdenali View Post
Ahh, Carve I think you're right after retreading the OPs post. My eyes must've still been half closed this morning.
yeah no worries, I have never seen a custie even contemplate the food pack or other logistics especially prior to the trip. Someone who has done it would appreciate it. Either a TL or a former or current guide. Not sure if that is the case but that they are thinking about how hard others will work to get them there makes me hope they have the most awesome trip imaginable.

I have seen guests - after a week of awesome food and beverage - come to the slow realization of what it takes to pull off just a week. The quiet questions come about how everything is done and then a look of amazement at the answers.
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Old 07-08-2017   #10
 
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Western Slope, CO, Colorado
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A Beer. Same as for risking life and limb rescuing a $3000 boat.
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