Marriott to Begin Placing Envelopes for Housekeeper Tips in Rooms

Marriott to Begin Placing Envelopes for Housekeeper Tips in Rooms
Image: Pixabay
September 15, 2014

As part of a new campaign, Marriott Hotels announced that it will begin placing envelopes in guests' rooms this week, encouraging them to tip their housekeeper.

The initiative, dubbed The Envelope Please, is a partnership with A Woman's Nation, a nonprofit organization founded by Maria Shriver. Its intention is to acknowledge the often-forgotten women working in domestic services, like housekeeping.

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics maids and housekeepers earned a median salary of $9.51 per hour, or about $19,780 per year.

Marriott employs about 20,000 housekeepers in the U.S. and Canada.

The Washington Post reported that housekeepers at Marriott's high-profile hotels in downtown Washington tend to see higher wages.

Employees that are part of the trade union, Unite Here Local 25, who make $18.30 per hour will get a raise every six months. By the end of the contract in September 2017, housekeepers will be making $20.35 an hour. But, only 10 percent of the company's housekeepers are unionized.

Shiver, the former first lady of California, was quoted in the Post as saying, "I was talking to room attendants, who were overwhelmingly women, and they would tell me that people were pretty sophisticated about tipping the bellman or concierge, but they hadn't been educated that they could leave a tip for a room attendant. There didn't seem to be a general awareness that you could, or should, tip a room attendant."

How much should you tip? The American Hotel and Lodging Association, a trade association suggests a daily rate of between $1 and $5 depending on the quality of the hotel. By tipping at the end of the day, rather than the end of the stay, it ensures that the person cleaning your room actually receives your tip.