How Much To Tip Movers And How To Figure Your Tip

We all want to be seen as kind, thoughtful, and courteous. It’s part of the human DNA to want to be liked and seen in a good light. So being a worker who deserves a tip and being a customer who tips go hand-in-hand. 

how much to tip movers

But are you supposed to tip movers at all or are they in the gray area? If so, how much should you tip movers? We will answer these questions and more as we go over the proper etiquette for tipping movers in America. 

Are You Supposed To Tip Movers?

When we go to a restaurant we tip the server before we leave. When we go to a grocery store, we do not tip the cashier. These are two examples where we know what is expected out of us. But what about other cases?

For example, do you tip the barber or hairstylist? This is difficult to understand because some people do while some people don’t. Another case like this is movers. Which brings us to the age-old question, “are you supposed to tip movers?”

How Much To Tip Movers

How Much To Tip Movers

When it comes to deciding how much to tip movers, take a look at a few different things rather than finding a flat rate for all circumstances. Because not all moves are the same and not all movers are the same. 

One thing to keep in mind is that you don’t tip movers based on percentages like you would a server at a restaurant. That is a strategy, but it doesn’t work the same. Here are the most important things to consider when tipping movers.

Family Size

This is the first thing you want to think about because not only does it affect how much stuff there is to move but it can be difficult to keep everything sorted as you do with large families. The more people, the more difficult it is. 

This is especially true when each person has their own instructions for the movers. Then they have to listen to what the kids need, what the parents need, and what anyone else needs. This can be stressful.

House Size

House size should also be taken into account. Again, this usually means more stuff but more than that it means more places and rooms for the movers to move stuff from. Usually, they will ask you to gather the boxes up.

But as far as furniture is concerned, the movers will have to go to each room to get furniture. When stairs are involved, it’s a good idea to think about a bigger tip because they will have to move stuff down them. 

Time Spent

This is probably the most important factor because everyone wants to be paid for the work that they do. The more time you spend on the job the more you should get paid, right? Well, this is usually the case. 

But there are exceptions. Someone who is efficient and does the job right shouldn’t get paid less than someone who slacks and draws a job out. So be careful when figuring the time spent on a job and think about the work done. 


If you are having things moved that you don’t really care if they make it, then you can ignore this. But if it is important to you that nothing gets scratched and everything remains in one piece with an even temperature, things are different.

This only matters if they actually do keep everything in tiptop shape. Sure, everyone has accidents, but if someone is moving your most prized possessions and they take good care of them, this is a crucial component. 

Are You Supposed To Tip Movers

Climate Conditions 

Moving in hot or cold weather is no fun. In fact, it can be dangerous. In cold weather, things like frostbite are a concern but things like slipping on ice are more common and happen regularly. So it can be dangerous.

Then in hot weather, heat strokes can sneak up on people, especially people working and trying to get a job done. So if someone is working hard in bad weather without complaining, then consider a bigger tip. 

Attitudes And Temperaments 

This one might step on some toes but in reality, you want to hire people that are making an effort and trying their best for you. This isn’t aligned with, “the customer is always right” saying, though it is similar. 

The point of this gauge is to pay back those who are really trying to do their best and who are kind even when things get tough. It’s not about depriving those having a rough day but paying it forward to those who are showing kindness. 

Other Costs Of Moving

Are You Supposed To Tip Movers

When it comes to moving, it is understandable why some people don’t tip the movers because it can be expensive to make the move. So sometimes tipping the movers moves to the bottom of the list. Here are some other costs. 

The House

This is the biggest and most obvious cost. When you move, you have to buy a new place to stay or rent one. So this will be the majority of what you will pay and it may be obvious but it was important that it be mentioned.

The cost of building a new house is scarcely different than the cost of renting an apartment or buying a small house. There are many other options but nothing changes the fact that this is the biggest cost.


This may or may not be considered part of the house cost depending on whether you are renting or not. If you are buying a house or building one, it is separate and the initial costs are outrageous for utilities.

If there is no initial cost, it is still likely thousands of dollars a month, making it the second most expensive cost and over time, it becomes the largest cost of moving. But the savings depend on your utility costs now.


There are very few hidden costs when it comes to USPS. If you happen to be shipping anything or forwarding anything to a new place, there will be small costs involved. The only constant is forwarding though.

You can change your address in the system and forward your mail by following the USPS moving guide that we have made. This will take you through a checklist of what you need to know when moving. 


Transportation can refer to a variety of things. It starts with the actual moving of you and your family. This means gas, of course. But it also refers to moving your stuff, which isn’t always part of the moving team’s fee.

There are usually two separate moving teams. There are those that help you pack up and put things into the moving vehicles and out of them. Then there are those that drive the vehicles, which you don’t need if you rent your own. 


When it comes to supplies, you want to make sure that you have everything you need. Boxes, packing tape, and bubble wrap aren’t that expensive if you get them over time. But if in a hurry, they really add up. 

If you work somewhere that gets deliveries often, you can usually snag some of those boxes with the manager’s permission. If not, you can get boxes online, at UPS, or USPS. Any way you go, it is super expensive. 


If you are moving over a long distance, you will have to pay for somewhere to stay. If you are moving to a new country or if you are not using a car, then you will have to pay for your flight. Deciding which is better isn’t easy.

It is best to figure the cost of your flight and compare it to how many nights you would stay at a hotel. Then there is food, gas, and anything that goes into traveling by car. It is usually about the same cost. 

Legal Papers

If you are moving to a new state or new country, this can be a problem. You need to update your vehicle registration, your ID, and more. To do this, you will probably end up paying a few hundred dollars.

The exact amount depends on how many papers you need to update. If you have a business, you will pay even more. So, calculate all of the costs before you begin and make sure you don’t miss anything important. 

Do You Tip Movers? 

Are You Supposed To Tip Movers

Now it’s your turn to answer. Do you tip movers? Since it isn’t a simple situation like at a restaurant, not everyone will think similarly. That’s why we want to know what you think about tipping movers and if you’ve tipped them before. 

We have found that some people always tip movers while some didn’t even know it was a thing. Now, we all know that it can be. So make your own decisions and let us know what you have decided.

Don’t worry if you find you are the odd one out either way. You do you! Tip who you believe you should tip, those who you believe are making an effort. Follow your heart and make a difference today.