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Canada-Toronto

Taxes and gratuity at venue

Hey ladies, I'm finally close to booking my venue but need clarification on a few things.

1. If taxes and gratuity are added to the venue price, should you still tip at the end still?
2. What should the general gratuity percentage be? 15% is automatically being added to our price. I was under the impression it was generally 10%
3. Finally, I noticed after doing calculations that they put the 15% gratuity on top of the price with tax, not pre-tax. Is that correct because that doesn't seem right to me? In the end, this is adding an extra $400-$500 to our final price tag.

I want to ensure I am having everything covered properly as I'm already above the venue budget and they won't budge, so every dollar counts!

Re: Taxes and gratuity at venue

  • naomikbnaomikb member
    2500 Comments Combo Breaker
    edited April 2013
    1. No, not unless you thought someone provided exceptional service (bartender, coordinator).  We didn't tip anyone at our venue on top of the built-in service charge and gratuity.

    2. It depends on the service - both the type and how "well" it was performed.  Typically in the service industry the going rate is 15-20%.  What service? I tip my hairdresser and taxi driver more than a bartender.

    3. You should ask them about their calculation for gratuity.  Typically gratuity should be calculated on the pre-tax amount.  However, they can have whatever policy they want, so just make sure you're okay with it. In the end, it just means they have the equivalent of a 17 or 18% pre-tax gratuity.  If it's their policy, it's their policy.  You can choose to book elsewhere.

    For our wedding we tipped very few people because either the gratuity was built in (venue) or they worked for themselves/we paid them cash and didn't deem their services to be needing/worth of a tip.  We did tip our transporation driver, hairdressers, and MUAs.  We did not tip florist, caker, photographer, or decorator.

    How far are you above your venue budget?  The easiest thing there is to change the menu -- switch from beef to chicken, take out a course, get rid of dessert and serve wedding cake for dessert, or reduce the late night food selection.  I also found decor was something I could really cut back to the bare minimum since our hall was nice already.

  • raeeanneraeeanne member
    10 Comments First Anniversary
    edited April 2013
    Our budget is $92pp and the price offered is $103pp.  So we are far apart.  It was suggested we take out a late night station, after they had thrown one in for free, but we want to keep the ones we have.  I've looked at areas of the menu where we can cut out, but the price for the basic menu is pretty good as is.  We are now thinking of changing the menu from a duo entree to a single to see if it drives the price down.

    A friend just brought up to us that if we offer to pay cash, that the tax could be waved.  If that is true and they accept, it falls EXACTLY into our budget!  So I think that will be the next step we take!

    I agree with you, we found a hall where we could cut back on decor.
  • raeeanneraeeanne member
    10 Comments First Anniversary
    edited April 2013
    I'm also trying to understand something if someone could just make it clear to me, as I am now slightly confused. This is the first time we've received a quote with the gratuity included, everywhere else has just been the plus the HST. If we were to book at another venue where gratuity was not included, should we be tipping 15% of our venue price ($20,000) to the hall?? Meaning $3000 tip at the end of the night?? I was originally going to just tip $200-$300 to the manager or bartenders if they did a good job.
  • In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/local-wedding-boards_canada-toronto_taxes-and-gratuity-at-venue?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Local%20Wedding%20BoardsForum:613Discussion:845187c5-b347-433c-a05f-6c0c42eb96c9Post:ea25986d-8f88-4a89-96e0-abcbf62a783d">Re: Taxes and gratuity at venue</a>:
    [QUOTE]I'm also trying to understand something if someone could just make it clear to me, as I am now slightly confused. This is the first time we've received a quote with the gratuity included, everywhere else has just been the plus the HST. If we were to book at another venue where gratuity was not included, should we be tipping 15% of our venue price ($20,000) to the hall?? Meaning $3000 tip at the end of the night?? I was originally going to just tip $200-$300 to the manager or bartenders if they did a good job.
    Posted by raeeanne[/QUOTE]

    Hi raeeanne,

    First things first, you should check to make sure that the pricing you received doesn't already include gratuities or a service charge. 

    Secondly, if they don't include gratuity, tip only servers, bartender, etc., but also check to make sure that the tip isn't already built into their wages. 

    Here's a great article on tipping:  <a href="http://www.frugalbride.com/tipping.html" rel="nofollow">http://www.frugalbride.com/tipping.html</a>

    Hope that helps!
  • $92 vs. $103 is a pretty big difference.  Be honest with them and tell them your max budget ($92) and see if they can find something to fit that.  If not then find a different venue.  It's unlikely that paying cash will save you the tax - if they are going to take the risk of not claiming that income then you probably don't want to work with sketchy people like that!  You could probably get a couple % discount if you paid cheque/cash instead of credit card since they get charged a fee for using credit card.

    All the venues we got quotes from included tax and gratuity in the quote, so just double check with all of them before you sign anything. It should be pretty clear in the paperwork. If gratuity is not included then ask them what is typically done - I would definitely make sure to tip servers/bartenders generously, remembering that they probably just worked 8 hours for you.

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