Do you tip your garbage man?

I’m not planning on tipping my garbage collector. Are you?

I live in the suburbs. Once a week I wheel my garbage company supplied trash can down to the curb, place it with the front of the can towards the street, with at least 12" seperating it from everything else. Sometime after 8AM a big blue garbage truck drives up, swings out an arm, picks up my can, empties it into the truck and places the garbage can back on the curbside.

2 weeks ago, a post card came in the mail. It was pre-printed with a message wishing us a happy holiday season, from John Doe, your garbage collector.

I’ve never talked to this person. I don’t even remember seeing this person. I can only guess that this is an attempt at a holiday tip. When I was growing up, the garbage man ran down the driveway and collected the garbage from the side of the house. I would see him every week and we would wave.

I’m not even sure how I would leave a tip. In the old days, I could have left an envelop taped to the top of the garbage can. Now, that can sits at the side of the road, near two schools, with lots of people walking by.

Do I what my who?

When I lived on Oahu it was strongly advised to leave at least a six-pack for the garbage collectors at Christmas. Failure to do so could bring the sort of retribution that only people like garbage men can inflict.

Where I live now there’s not such a strong(armed) tradition, but since I have access at my job to Kevlar gloves at wholesale price, I leave a few pairs for them.


The only time I have ever heard of such a thing, was an under the table quid pro quo arrangement.

I had a neighbor that would occasionally leave “extra garbage” of various sorts with a six-pack sitting on top. There was no prior agreement, or discussion, or even face to face contact at all, but it always “worked” - the extra junk was whisked away w/out any extra fees being charged and the six pack disappeared with it. Whether they would have cleared the stuff away without the six-pack is an open question, but it seemed like a reasonable compromise to me ( in the Bay Area extra garbage pick-ups can be pricey ).

I do in DC. I gave them a case of beer last year. This year I’m not in the states. They seemed to appreciate it, I did it because when I go to work I would see these guys really working hard trying to collect garbage in these narrow DC alleys. I’d say good morning, they’d say good morning, why not give them a case of beer.

I give gifts to the mail carrier, too.

In Wisconsin we give all the snowplow operators a case of beer. They need something to calm their nerves when they’re taking down mailboxes along the road.

To those who leave some suds out for the plowmen or sanitation engineers, how do you ensure that the brews get to the intended recipients, as opposed to the neighborhood kids?

(Serious question BTW)

We live in the city and garbage is nearly unlimited and free. I don’t do holiday tips as a general rule. However, if for some reason I put out way more rubbish than normal (when we cleaned out our attic) I will sometimes slip them a few bucks or a bottle or something. They got a tough frikkin job and if I make it extra tough in some way, I like to recognize that.

Wait around and hand it to them. They are so good about following their schedule that you can almost set your clock ----- so its no great hardship.

Also -------- I do sometimes informally “tip”. The one occasion I was tossing some old skin magazines. I kept that bag on the porch and went out and handed it over in person. The driver actually thanked me before he tossed it in the cab.

I’ve never even heard of or considered such a thing till I saw someone mention it here on the 'dope.

I think it’s absurd. Sure, it’s a fairly crappy job but lots of people have crappy jobs, should I track them all down and tip them too? Why does the garbage man deserve a tip more then the guy at the sewage treatment plant who literally has to put up with your crap all day?

No. I pay rates to my council, and it’s responsible for paying the garbagemen.

I was kidding. They just take down the mailboxes like they were drinking.:wink:

This made me laugh so hard, because my street already has 50% of the mailboxes leaning at a 45 degree angle! I think our first snow storm (was that blizzard a couple of weeks ago) and my neighbor once removed lost theirs!

I wonder if a case of beer is enough of a bribe to get them to miss mine! :smiley:

I live in Montana and we don’t have garbage collection where I live. I have to take our garbage can to a solid waste transfer station once a week. The good thing is that it’s free and I can dump as much as I want, whenever I want. So I don’t tip myself.

Where I lived in Northern California we had garbage collection and I don’t remember anyone tipping them. They make good money, and have great benefits, so the thought never crossed my mind. Of course I didn’t tip the paperboy or mailman either. Tipping service-related people may be a regional thing in the US…

No. I wouldn’t even know how. I pay the township, they pay the garbage people. I would have to stand out tomorrow morning and wait for them to arrive to hand them something. I’m not even sure if I get the same people week after week.

I pay for garbage pickup! It isn’t a lot, but it comes to about $20 a month. I’m not tipping them extra.

I used to, but since they’ve gotten worse and worse at their job this year, nope, not this time.

We have always put a bottle of Spirits out for them.

Hey, they already get all they can eat.