Mathews Inc.
guide tipping advice Please?
Elk
Contributors to this thread:
davebw226 03-Sep-16
Bou'bound 03-Sep-16
BIGHORN 03-Sep-16
400 Elk @Home 03-Sep-16
davebw226 03-Sep-16
Thornton 03-Sep-16
jingalls 04-Sep-16
kentuckbowhnter 04-Sep-16
Dave 04-Sep-16
Tracker12 04-Sep-16
taxidermy man 04-Sep-16
DonVathome 04-Sep-16
Zinger 04-Sep-16
DonVathome 04-Sep-16
kentuckbowhnter 04-Sep-16
LBshooter 04-Sep-16
Bou'bound 04-Sep-16
Ziek 04-Sep-16
Ambush 04-Sep-16
TreeWalker 04-Sep-16
Stretch 04-Sep-16
Jaquomo 04-Sep-16
Ambush 04-Sep-16
kentuckbowhnter 04-Sep-16
sfiremedic 04-Sep-16
LBshooter 05-Sep-16
kentuckbowhnter 05-Sep-16
davebw226 05-Sep-16
Dave 05-Sep-16
Bullwinkle 05-Sep-16
LINK 05-Sep-16
davebw226 05-Sep-16
Ambush 05-Sep-16
LBshooter 05-Sep-16
bowriter 05-Sep-16
Dave 05-Sep-16
Bou'bound 05-Sep-16
bowriter 05-Sep-16
LINK 05-Sep-16
bowriter 05-Sep-16
LINK 05-Sep-16
bulldancer 05-Sep-16
Mathewsshooter1 05-Sep-16
jdee 05-Sep-16
WV Mountaineer 05-Sep-16
jdee 05-Sep-16
Bou'bound 05-Sep-16
Ambush 05-Sep-16
bowriter 05-Sep-16
Matt 05-Sep-16
Bou'bound 05-Sep-16
Matt 05-Sep-16
WV Mountaineer 05-Sep-16
Matt 05-Sep-16
El Je-bow 05-Sep-16
Trial153 05-Sep-16
LBshooter 05-Sep-16
WV Mountaineer 06-Sep-16
Bayou 06-Sep-16
Alpinehunter 06-Sep-16
LINK 06-Sep-16
Bou'bound 06-Sep-16
LBshooter 06-Sep-16
leftee 06-Sep-16
LINK 06-Sep-16
Thunder Head 06-Sep-16
flybyjohn 06-Sep-16
bowriter 06-Sep-16
APauls 06-Sep-16
Brotsky 06-Sep-16
WV Mountaineer 06-Sep-16
BigRed 06-Sep-16
320 bull 06-Sep-16
Waterdawg 06-Sep-16
Bob H in NH 06-Sep-16
Bou'bound 06-Sep-16
Surfbow 06-Sep-16
Matt 07-Sep-16
bowriter 07-Sep-16
Fuzzy 07-Sep-16
LINK 07-Sep-16
Mtgoat 07-Sep-16
Mtgoat 07-Sep-16
Ambush 07-Sep-16
Scar Finga 07-Sep-16
DonVathome 07-Sep-16
Junior 07-Sep-16
South Farm 07-Sep-16
kentuckbowhnter 07-Sep-16
LINK 08-Sep-16
Fuzzy 08-Sep-16
Ambush 08-Sep-16
Fuzzy 08-Sep-16
Spiral Horn 08-Sep-16
Spiral Horn 08-Sep-16
Drop tine 08-Sep-16
Trial153 08-Sep-16
JakeBrake 08-Sep-16
Thornton 08-Sep-16
Bou'bound 08-Sep-16
Trial153 08-Sep-16
TSI 09-Sep-16
Scar Finga 09-Sep-16
greenmountain 09-Sep-16
Thornton 09-Sep-16
Scar Finga 09-Sep-16
Bou'bound 09-Sep-16
Fuzzy 09-Sep-16
Drop tine 09-Sep-16
TXHunter 09-Sep-16
JakeBrake 09-Sep-16
Ziek 09-Sep-16
Matt 09-Sep-16
glidingindian 10-Sep-16
Bou'bound 10-Sep-16
Gun 10-Sep-16
Dave 10-Sep-16
Thornton 10-Sep-16
glidingindian 11-Sep-16
JakeBrake 11-Sep-16
TSI 11-Sep-16
TXHunter 11-Sep-16
Will tell 11-Sep-16
Kolbeck 12-Sep-16
Bou'bound 19-Feb-20
oletrapper 19-Feb-20
yooper89 19-Feb-20
oletrapper 19-Feb-20
welka 19-Feb-20
Medicinemann 19-Feb-20
JakeBrake 19-Feb-20
Fuzzy 20-Feb-20
From: davebw226
03-Sep-16
Hey guys, i've got a 6 day NM elk hunt coming up. Anyone want to share with me their feelings on what an appropriate tip is for my guide? Regardless of the outcome i was kind thinking $300-$400 assuming i came away feeling like he worked hard to help me get a shot. Is that in the range? Low?

From: Bou'bound
03-Sep-16
Low

From: BIGHORN
03-Sep-16
I give my guide 10% the cost of the hunt. If he did an exceptional job I give him more. If he did a crappy job I reduce it down. I had such a bad guide in Alaska years ago that I didn't give him anything. That is a very rare situation but he deserved nothing.

03-Sep-16
For what it's worth...I gave my guide 15%.

From: davebw226
03-Sep-16
ok cool, i thought i might be a bit low. thanks tons guys

From: Thornton
03-Sep-16
I try to give 10% unless the outfitter sells me the hunt cheaper-then I give more.

From: jingalls
04-Sep-16
10% minimum.

04-Sep-16
10% is the starting point for me. sometimes more depending on the situation. I never base the tip on getting an animal. I have done less on some guides who did a bad job and once I did nothing to a guy who had me hunting on some land he and I were not supposed to be on and I almost got a ticket, the warden gave the guide the tickets when he found out he was guiding me.

From: Dave
04-Sep-16
This crap about x% always pisses me off. Are you telling me a guide for a desert BH deserves $10,000 while an elk guide only deserves $500 because that's what it amounts to if you tip based on the price of the hunt. Hunt prices are driven by demand and have nothing to do with work involved on behalf of the guide. In fact, I would argue that elk guides do much more work than sheep guides, especially when you get an animal down. Granted, it depends on the type of hunt(archery elk, horseback, backpack, etc) Most guides make $300-400/day and some of you guys want to pay them double what they make. It's ridiculous.

From: Tracker12
04-Sep-16
Dave So how many guided hunts have you taken and what have you tipped in the past based on hunt cost?

04-Sep-16
Dave, It's a rich mans sport don't you know. Geez I wish I got a 10% tip from everyone I did work for.

From: DonVathome
04-Sep-16
On the subject of a sheep hunt versus an Elk hunt. Do you think just anyone can go and be a guide for sheep? Supply and demand guides know they will make much more and so do the Outfitters so they will make a much more careful selection for someone hard-working and experienced.

That same argument can apply to a restaurant. So you're saying you should tip the same amount for $20 meal as a $200 meal? I worked as a server for a long time and I can tell you it takes a lot of experience and being a good worker to get a job at a nicer restaurant.

That said I do tip based on a percentage however there is some logic to the argument that A guide for one week Desert sheep hunt may not deserve 10 times as big tip as a week guide for elk.

From: Zinger
04-Sep-16
The guide sets his price is f he wants 10% more than he should charge 10% more. I don't tip my plumber who sets his prices why should I tip a guide? That said I always tip because I hate looking cheap.

From: DonVathome
04-Sep-16
Zinger ok argument, have heard before, but can say the same thing for restaurant food serves and on flip side they can say you know it is 10%-20% so YOU can factor it into your cost. Also outfitter sets price and guide works for him.

That said many places now (ocean fishing trip I was just on) say flat out 18%, some even make it mandatory.

Just was on a hunt with buddy and we discussed this at length a week ago so funny this thread is here.

I have only been on 3 guided hunting trips, 2 were last week. Been on a few charter fishing trips.

Also again I was a server so I will always tip a lot.

04-Sep-16
Damn Dave, just how pissed off are you? My money, my policy.

From: LBshooter
04-Sep-16
When I sell a policy to a client I don't get a tip? I spend a decent amount of time with them and then with the underwriting process and then delivering the policy to the client, why don't I deserve a tip? Tipping has gotten to be expected at every turn and you can't go anywhere that a tip is not expected. Heck even the ice cream counter has a tip jar on it, and all they do is scoop ice cream. If I'm paying a outfit for a hunt and it's 7k for a hunt, why is it that I'm expected to pay anymore for that hunt? The plain and simple fact is that tipping is now ingrained in society and everyone expects it, and we the consumer have fallen into the trap, unfortunately.

From: Bou'bound
04-Sep-16
Very little tipping done internationally

From: Ziek
04-Sep-16
Tipping is customary in some situations and not in others. I sure could have benefitted from a 10% tip from each of my passengers as an airline captain. I might have even shared it with my crew. ;-) But just because you guys didn't tip me doesn't mean I didn't tip my guides, waiters, etc. when I received services.

From: Ambush
04-Sep-16
I've only ever been on two guided hunts. Both times I had great people and because of the situations of these people, I tipped very generously.

From: TreeWalker
04-Sep-16
Would have, could have, should have re the excuses about whether is "fair" or not to have a guiding industry where tips are not built into the price of the hunt.

I give 15-20%. Am in a position to do so. 15% assumes guide is prepared and gives good effort. If cooks, I give them each $100 or a bit more. If horse wranglers, etc, $100. I have only had a couple of guides that made the hunt a drag and none wasted the trip. Like it or not, tips are how those guys and gals make a chunk of their money.

I have had hunts last a few hours and some for a week. The length of the hunt nor the harvest opportunity does not drive the tip. If a hunt lasts one day, the guide is not able to then book a hunter for the next few days.

If a hunter was on a tight budget, I could not see planning on a tip of less than 10% and would tell the guide wish it could be more. Just do not say that as you play on your $600 iPhone and smoke on your $8000 a year cigarettes while driving up in your $50,000 truck and step out wearing matching Sitka gear toting a $2000 spotting scope,

And give cash. Guides have knives etc.

My 2 cents.

From: Stretch
04-Sep-16
I'm making my first guided hunt in a few days. I brought this up with the outfitter and here is his response: "this is a service type industry so think of your guide as a waiter in a restaurant. Standard rates are 10%-20% of the hunt cost; landowner permits, sales tax and licenses are not considered part of the hunt cost when calculating the cost of the hunt for tipping purposes". Regarding the cook: "when you tip the cook consider the rough cost of what the meals would have been in a restaurant and base your percentage off of that."

From: Jaquomo
04-Sep-16
I have left a $1000 tip for a $5000 business dinner because the staff did a great job. Did they work harder than the gals at Waffle House? Probably not, but the gals at Waffle House don't work at the Mondrian in Beverly Hills.

OTOH, a hunter from Texas who was a watermelon farmer tipped me with a watermelon after I guided him to a giant OTC 5 point bull.

From: Ambush
04-Sep-16
I refuse to go to restaurants that have a mandatory "gratuity" added to the bill. Then it is simply a way of charging more for a meal than the menu advertises. If it is mandatory, then add it to the price on the menu and have a line on the menu that says "Thank you, but no need to tip because you already have". Distribute that percentage among the employees.

Tips should be an expression of gratitude for service above and beyond what would be expected to be normal for the circumstance. Using the restaurant analogy; if i go to a restaurant, I would expect to be able to order and eat whatever is on the menu. I would also expect my server to bring it to my table. I would expect the cook to prepare it in an industry standard fashion.

Anything above that standard is where extra appreciation get's expressed monetarily.

Tips should be earned, not just expected.

OTOH, we shouldn't go looking for excuses to be cheap or stingy. If you can afford to eat out or go on guided hunts, you likely can afford to reward good service.

04-Sep-16
I hope all the dudes on here that book hunts and dont tip tell the guide in advance they will not be receiving a tip. bet you dont though.

From: sfiremedic
04-Sep-16
10% minimum and 20% max sounds about right. I feel its the right thing to do just as it is in a restaurant. Most guides work hard to help you be successful.

Davebw. you're in the ballpark. Anything is appreciated.

From: LBshooter
05-Sep-16
So am I to assume the guides get very little from the outfitter? On a 15,000 dollar bear hunt, how much of that goes to the actual guide? I have no clue so any of you who do lets hear it. Would it be safe to assume 1/2 k to the guide for a 10 day hunt? And that guide expects a 10/15% 1500/2250 tip? That's a pretty good 10 days for the guide.

05-Sep-16
guides that work for an outfitter usually get a daily rate and it aint that much. most money goes to the outfitter and their expenses like leasing land, equipment, salaries, marketing etc. I have been in camp where folks have stiffed their guide when they have worked hard for them and 100 percent of the people in camp think the client that stiffed the guide is a douche.

From: davebw226
05-Sep-16
i seem to have hit on a good subject. to be clear, i believe that my guide is an employee of the owners of the guide service. in this case, i think a tip is appropriate assuming he works hard. I'm actually not basing it on whether i'm successful or not. A lot of things go into the success of a hunt that is far outside the control of a guide. In the end, if i feel like the guide has optimized my chances and worked hard toward a successful outcome than he has done his job. So, with all that has been said here so far, I'm coming out in the 10% to 20% range assuming i'm happy with my guide.

From: Dave
05-Sep-16
"On the subject of a sheep hunt versus an Elk hunt. Do you think just anyone can go and be a guide for sheep? Supply and demand guides know they will make much more and so do the Outfitters so they will make a much more careful selection for someone hard-working and experienced. "

Alright, then let's change it to a Desert BHS guide vs a Dall Sheep guide. Both are guiding sheep so you can't use the argument that sheep guides somehow work harder. Does a DBH guide deserve 4x as much as the Dall sheep guide simply because the hunt costs 4x as much simply due to "demand" of the hunt driving up the cost? Hunt costs are not purely driven by work involved. They are driven by hunter demand in large part and other factors that have nothing to do with the guiding part of it. I've been on over 20 guided hunts over the years and I can tell you that the guides work harder on a horseback archery elk hunt than they do on a sheep hunt in many situations. Having been on two sheep hunts, I can also tell you that many of the guides don't do it because they think they can make more in tips. They do it because they love to sheep hunt. Many are young "kids" and actually have very little guiding experience for other species other than what they've guided in the outfitter's camp where they started out(caribou, wolf, etc) The "older" guides who are more experienced tend to get more selective in what they will guide for based on the work involved. i.e. Many will refuse to do 2:1 caribou hunts simply because it's a lot of work to dress and pack out two caribou for a couple older hunters for the tip that they receive based on the "percentage" of hunt cost method.

From: Bullwinkle
05-Sep-16
This subject comes up every year. Personally, I have given several Bowsiters a place to stay, fed them, and set them up with good places to hunt. Never once did I ever get any tip. Not even a thank-you.

If you guys are such great hunters, my question is, "Why do you have to hire a guide or outfitter in the first place????????

From: LINK
05-Sep-16
I guide whitetails and have had both good and bad, even though I'm always a good guide.;) I've had guys tip me 200 when I didn't even guide them but they enjoyed my humor in camp. I've had a guy not tip me before, I believe he truely forgot. I was asked to guide him again and I would usually say no but he made up for it the second time I guided him. If you plan on going back again I'd leave a good tip for sure. If you don't think the non tippers and pia guys get gar holed on a return trip you might should think again. I would say 15% is about average.

From: davebw226
05-Sep-16
Bullwinkle, i never claimed to be a great hunter. particularly for a new species, using a new method for me, and in a different state. I too have personally seen to the success of a good number of friends that i have introduced to hunting here in CA or as a kid on the east coast. I just don't have anyone offering to introduce me to Bow Hunting for Elk.

I figure my guide works for a business owner, i'm not in love with the culture of tipping, but it is what it is and i think guides are often paid by their employers at a level that anticipates clients will be tipping. So if i plan to hunt with this outfit again in the future, id like to be in an acceptable/customary range for my tip, and also offer a big thank you.

From: Ambush
05-Sep-16
Quote Link: "If you plan on going back again I'd leave a good tip for sure. If you d'on't think the non tippers and pia guys get gar holed on a return trip you might should think again."

Is this the prevalent attitude in the guide industry?

If you came to my shop for repair work and I busted my tail getting you going again and did a great job, you would leave me a minimum fifteen percent tip?? If you didn't tip, you'd also be good with me "gar holing" you on the next job"??

I always tip hotel staff and restaurant servers (with cash and generously). And on the two guided hunts that I've done, I also tipped above your suggested percent.

BUT to my mind tips should be earned , not automatically expected.

Then it becomes " everybody gets a ribbon". With little incentive to excell.

From: LBshooter
05-Sep-16
Bullwinkle, WOW!! Not even a thank you? If anyone deserves a tip or gift and a thank you is someone who goes out of their way to provide a hunt to fellow hunters, now that's just not right, and shame on those guys.

From: bowriter
05-Sep-16
As a former elk, bear, fishing and deer guide, I suggest this formula. Base it at 15% of the cost of the hunt. Then, reduce if you feel the guide did not do all he should or could have and increase if he did good or better. If he just did "his" job, keep it at 15%. On an elk hunt, it seldom has anything to do with whether or not you killed. Guides, good ones, work just as hard on failed hunts as successfull ones. Base your tip on the labor, not the outcome.

But...if he packed that whole sucker out for you, give him everything you own and your wife.

From: Dave
05-Sep-16
Here's the problem as I see it. Some guys(particularly a lot of sheep hunters apparently) have more money than they know what to do with. And before a bunch of you start chiming in and saying it's not true, don't bother because I've seen it--both in camp and at the auctions/shows. These guys, along with others(including my wife) have the attitude that tipping 15-20% or more is mandatory, despite the service received and many just want to show everyone just how much money they have by leaving ridiculous tips. The problem with that is that when you start at 15% for average or even poor service, it makes the next guy who saved up for years for a hunt and can't afford to tip 20% on a $25K hunt look like a tightwad. That's BS. Tipping for good service isn't unreasonable and personally, I always do it. However, leaving a guide a $10,000-20,000 tip(which is 10-20% for DBH hunt) when they're only making $4000 in wages seems a little ridiculous. Another example: Guided whitetail hunt for $6K and Guided horseback archery elk hunt for $6K. Guide for the whitetails takes out multiple hunters and drops them at stands and comes back at the end of the day to pick them up. Guide for the elk hunt has to wrangle horses, prepare a camp, cook meals, and locate and call in elk. Whitetail guide loads your deer in the back of a pickup or quad and takes it back to camp to be dressed out. Elk guide has to dress and sometimes pack out your bull to the horses and then pack it down the mountain. I've been on both types of hunts and you're telling me these two guides deserve the same in tips???

From: Bou'bound
05-Sep-16
Like most Hingis this is not that complex. It matters to the tipper since they have to be comfortable with what they did. Nothing else matters. If you are going back be even more generous. Common sense. Who cares what it looks like to someone else that you will never see or speak to again in your life. Do you what works for you.

From: bowriter
05-Sep-16
No Dave, I have respectfully disagree although, I certainly see your point. Professional guides quickly understand just what a client's financial situation is. They understand the average Joe, like you and I, can't give a guide 800, $100 bills he just happened to have in his pack.

A good, professional guide, will be plenty happy with $300 if that is all the hunter can afford and IF THE HUNTER IS ONE THE GUIDE WAS HAPPY GUIDING. Those caps are because that is a big caveat.

If the hunter was a whining, complaining, miserbale s.o.b. and felt cheated because he didn't get a shot, then the guide will label him as a tightwad if he gets a low tip. I have had, on two occassions, a guide actually refuse to take a tip because he felt I worked as hard as he did and did not immediately know more about his business than he.

Bottom line, be a good hunter and the guide will be happy with whatever you can afford. Let the fat cats take up the slack.

From: LINK
05-Sep-16
Ambush the outfitter I guide for doesn't have bad stands but if I have two guys and one is super nice and a good tipper and the other is the opposite. Guess who's getting what I would consider the best stand. Money talks and so do hunters that cooperate well and aren't hard to deal with, it's just a fact of life. I've had guys offer me half the hunt cost in a tip for a buck with x number of inches. I guide just as hard for the pita as that guy and I've never collected an extra tip for a big buck.

From: bowriter
05-Sep-16
I agree mostly with Link, however, if I can't stand the big tipper, the other guy is getting the better stand. And...90% of the time, the guy in the lesser stand gets the best buck. God aint stupid.

if a hunter offers me big money to get him a buck with X-number points, I consider than an insult and treat him accordingly. He isn't a hunter, he is a killer. Just my opinion.

From: LINK
05-Sep-16
bowriter I agree about the big tipper. Of the many guys I've guided, I've guided two but heads one was a non tipping thug from the hood(not kidding) the other was a guy was a retired ceo of a Fortune 500 company. He tipped well and was like able but could be a real pita. I love it when I guide a school teacher that saves to go on a hunt every four years.

From: bulldancer
05-Sep-16
I can only speak for guiding elk,there is going to be at least 6 or 7 days prescouting before the hunt begins. The guide uses his vehicle and gas for the hunt and scouting.Half of the clients you will have to teach which way the wind blows. Some will have more money than they know what to do with, some will mortgage their house to come hunting. During this week we meet,we will know, just tip what YOU think is fair.

05-Sep-16
Remember guides scout all summer set up camps out of there guides like my self don't own the outfit worker bees

From: jdee
05-Sep-16
Tippers.....lol.. My wife works as a wrangler for tourist dudes that come up for trail rides in the high country. Yesterday they had 61 people through out the day and she rode from 9 am until 6 pm taking different groups of people that most of them have never been on a horse before. She works with another person, one rides in front and one rides behind everyone so every one stays safe.

She gets home and says we had 61 tourist today and I split $54 dollars in tips with the other wrangler...WTF.. Big sign says Wranglers work for tips but some people just slip away after the ride. I wouldn't tip my dentist or my electrician, ETC. because that kind of service isn't dependent on tips but if you can't tip in a tip dependent business ....STAY HOME !!

05-Sep-16
Last year at this time I was making well into 6 figures. I was strictly procuring timber. For years I have done this and done very well monetarily. Times change.

I now make $110 a day after taxes. I work roughly 75-80 hours a week running chainsaws, logging equipment, and cruising timber. I am working as hard or harder than any guide alive. Can I get a tip because you wiped your Butt on the toilet paper my pulpwood provides? Or, because I provided quite possibly the material for your hardwood floors or printer paper? I mean I'm working in a service industry busting my rump trying to simply survive now. It sounds as if I should expect checks in the mail this week because of the choices I have made and, the cards life has dealt me. PM me for my address.

A lot of these guides get free room and board, gas reimbursement, etc... . Waiters and cooks don't. A $200 plus a day job with no costs ain't bad money. Better than that and you are doing real well. To tip or not is your choice. Guiding hunters isn't the food service industry nor, should it be compared as the same. Call me cheap if you want. There are some waiters out there that will highly disagree with you if you do.

If the Lord has blessed you it is wise to share that with others. However, I'll leave it to the individual to decide if and, how much to do so. Because with the costs of hunts today, it isn't required. God Bless

From: jdee
05-Sep-16
If you don't want to tip, go DIY....Problem solved.

From: Bou'bound
05-Sep-16
It all Comes Down to one question. Do you believe the tip is a bonus add on or a part of the base cost. People will handle his based on how they answer that question and how they feel personally about the practice.

From: Ambush
05-Sep-16
How many chamber maids or restaurant servers are there because they love their job? Not many I'd venture. They are working at that job because they have to.

Now how many guides are doing that job because there is nothing else. Again, I'd venture, not many. Most do it for the lifestyle and most have other regular jobs. Most do it as a choice. A few do it for the bragging rights and to be able to pre-face every sentence with "...when I was guiding....".

And I'm glad that a few have told me to "stay home if you're not going to automatically give me the "gift" I expect". Not the kind of person I'd want to hunt with anyway.

Entitlement just puts me off. So I will just stay home or DIY.

From: bowriter
05-Sep-16
Here is the deal. If the guide is also one of or the only owner of the operation, then he is management and should not get as large a tip. if the guide is just an employee, as in a server in a cafe, then he is almost living on tips and deserves to be considered for one.

From: Matt
05-Sep-16
I know of a couple of situations where the guides work only for tips as they do not get paid a daily rate by the outfitter. While this scenario is extreme, it highlights that tipping isn't considered "optional", as the hunting industry (like the restaurant industry) has structured its compensation scheme around the well-understood principle.

It's fine if folks have a philosophical disagreement against tipping or think they shouldn't tip because they don't get tips in their industry. They should however respectfully adopt an equally rigid position against patronizing businesses in industries where they are unwilling to recognize and follow the accepted and understood compensation structure.

The guides I have hunted/spoken with generally understand that their hunters come from all walks of life and that tipping a standard % or $ isn't in the cards for everyone.

From: Bou'bound
05-Sep-16
I never understood the model of don't tip the owner if he is your guide rule. Never followed it either. The person provides the service, I budgeted the funds, and just because I have the owner vs. a hired hand I believe a tip is every bit as warranted. You could argue you may get better service with the actual business owner providing the attention.

THE BEAUTIFUL THING ABOUT THE TIPPING DEBATE IS NOBODY IS OBLIGATED TO DO ANYTHING THEY ARE NOT 100% COMFORTABLE WITH. WHATEVER YOU DO IS WHAT YOU ARE HAPPY DOING.

From: Matt
05-Sep-16
The owner has control over his/her compensation by building an adequate profit into the price of the hunt, whereas a guide's wages generally won't provide that.

05-Sep-16
Evidently life isn't to bad for guides or, there wouldn't be many inline to be guides Matt. If they are working that cheap then there is no shortage of people willing to do it. Economics say that. Not me. And economics dictate that if the pay wasn't adequate, there wouldn't be enough supply of guides.

God Bless men

From: Matt
05-Sep-16
WV, if economic theory was the ultimate arbiter of our decisions, this site wouldn't exist. Very few of us would hunt as we could buy our groceries at the story because it would be cheaper on a per calorie basis. And yet we still hunt...

Many hunting guides do so for the enjoyment of it, not because it maximizes their income - it's not their "highest and best use" for those who are fluent in real estate jargon. For many, it is also not their primary means of income - it is in essence a hobby job, one in which they can proxy hunt and get paid for it.

But if you want to hold onto your theory, you need only to look at the impact the oils sands had on the industry over the past decade. Lots of western Canadian outfitter lost long-time guides to the patch because of the wage differential was just too much to ignore.

From: El Je-bow
05-Sep-16
I have thoroughly enjoyed reading this thread of posts! Good debating gents, Thanks!

From: Trial153
05-Sep-16
Just me. 10% and then I adjust it up or down depending on effort put in. If I think the guide out works me then I raise my Gratuity accordingly. Honestly that's my baseline. I also do not look at all hunts as equal and tip accordingly based on what is entailed. There is a difference in hunts to my mind and I tip if I feel it is warrented to reflect those differences.

From: LBshooter
05-Sep-16
still wondering of anyone knows what the guides cut of the hunt price is? Seems a waste for someone to work as hard as some guides do in hopes of getting a tip. There has to be a percentage in order to get guides.

06-Sep-16
Matt, Thanks for proving the point I was trying to make about how economics will determine whether there be a shortage of willing guides. I also understand and agree why most do it. At least the guides I've known as friends did it for that reason. But, they weer young and this was 20 years ago too. Currently, I figure most are doing a lot better due to demand for premium guided hunts.

The Canadian Government list the average salaries of oil field workers range from $2900/week to $4850/week in 2015. Well into 6 figures at the lowest pay. Up to nearly a quarter of a million a year for the highest pay. So, yes money and economics was the determining factor for these people.

I'm not saying they are getting rich. I'm not saying they shouldn't be tipped. I'm just saying that demanding a hunting guide be tipped cannot be economically justified. It is a choice. Not a criteria.

LBshooter, you are exactly right. While guides no doubt do it because they like doing it, they aren't doing it for free. Or, on a whim that they get wealthy clients in camp. They are doing it because the money, along with the job is something they are willing to accept.

In the past threads concerning this topic, prices of $150-$200 a day have been quoted as normal pay for a elk guide. Some even higher. That is good money when your room and board is covered. Throw in mileage and gas reimbursement of roughly .55/mile based on the government allotment, if your own vehicle is being used, that is down right really good compensation alone. Throw in a tax free tip of 10%-20% and they are making in comparison to a $80,000-$90,000 a year salary, on their weekly pay.

In reality, the only problem with it is doesn't last all year. So, the guides do something different in the off season. And, I imagine it is for less money on the hour because they line right back up and do the guiding thing again next year too. Even though the money is "pitiful". As Matt said above, when the compensation becomes too great to over rule the hobby job, they will mostly not do it.

God Bless men

From: Bayou
06-Sep-16
I like these debates and was hesitant to reply or give my opinion. This is solely my opinion and I will continue to do what I think is appropriate and everybody else can do as they please. It takes myself 2 to 3 years to save for a hunt with bills and a family. What I choose to do for a living is my choice and I'm fine with that and so is my family. When I go on a hunt I have a great time, I help do anything I can and act as part of the group not a paying member. I do get tired of the tip jars, whether its a drive through or getting a go to order. I do my job everyday to my best ability and never expect a thank you or let alone a tip. I will admit when I get a thank you or a hug it makes everything in this world worth it. On a 10K hunt I do not tip 10 or 20%, if the guide or outfitter thinks less of me or dry holes me then so be it. I do tip but I make no excuses for the amount that I leave. What it boils down to is tip what you can and don't worry what someone else does. I wonder how much I would receive if I stuck a tip jar to the back divider in the back of my cruiser.

From: Alpinehunter
06-Sep-16
I've watched this debate over the years and I've seen the average suggestion go from 10% to 10-20%. Tipping has become an entitlement in the Outfitting Industry and we all know what happens when someone feels entitled. Entering this industry is a lifestyle choice. I don't feel sorry for anyone who chooses to chase the dream and I don't expect them to feel sorry for me. I definitely like to leave a tip but the trend above 10% is going to make me look like a cheapskate at times. I'm going on a guided mule deer hunt this month and I plan to leave around 20% because of the hunt cost and the effort that the guide will provide. I sort of go with a daily amount based on effort and attitude rather than a % of the total hunt cost.

From: LINK
06-Sep-16
WV, I make just as much if not more on tips than on my daily wage when guiding. If there were no tips it wouldn't be worthwhile for me to do. The outfitter I work for has a bunch of local good ole boys with full time jobs that are willing to burn a lot of their vacation on guiding. Without tips the outfitter would have trouble. He has hired full time guides out of guide school but that has never worked well for him.

From: Bou'bound
06-Sep-16
I think the point some are making is the wage / labor supply issue is not the responsibility of the guest it is something the owner and employee need to square away.

From: LBshooter
06-Sep-16
Link, can you fill us in on what you guide for and what is your daily rate from your outfitter? Maybe the outfitters are to greedy and keep more of the cash for themselves. Why don't they increase the cost of the hunt in order to pay the guide more?

From: leftee
06-Sep-16
Same old annual 'entitlement' mentality BS.Tip what you want.Don't tip if they suck.

From: LINK
06-Sep-16
LB I guide whitetails so I'm sure elk can be different. I get 150$/ day on a five day hunt. With two hunters I usually get 800-1200 in tips, an occasional 1500, on a hunt that cost the hunters around 4K. I know a guy that guided in sw New Mexico for elk in the 90's and back then he would get that same amount for elk. That was 20 years ago in a primo unit with guys spending big money. The outfitter could tack on an extra amount for the tip, but it's all coming from the same place and I'm sure they like to advertise the lower price. The outfitter I work for makes a living but he's not getting rich fellas. The labor issue is not the hunters responsibility but if you want a decent hand your paying for it one way or another. The tipping method gives you some say if you are unhappy with your guide. Give what you feel is right, no one is entitled here. As with many things in life though, you get way you pay for or on the other side earn what you work for. If you think your guide did well take care of him and ask for him on your next trip.

From: Thunder Head
06-Sep-16
Tis is an old topic that there is no "perfect" answer too.

I decided a long time ago to do 10% total of the actual hunt cost. I do base it on performance not success.

Anyone who is not happy with the amount I give them is free to give it back!!!

From: flybyjohn
06-Sep-16
I have never tipped a guide for his service.. but have never hired a guide either.

I think that the philosophy of tipping has really got turned around. A tip should always be voluntary, for work that is above and beyond what would normally be expected. The whole reason for tips is to thank someone for going out of their way to do an exceptional job for someone. That is what makes the server want to do an above average job for the client. You could have just an average guide that is expecting the tip but does nothing to deserve it except his normal job.

The problem is that in today’s society, tipping is just expected no matter what kind of service you get. It is even figured into the salary of the employees. Now tell me how this kind of mentality is going to produce employees that strive to do a better job than another employee so that they will see/deserve a tip. The thing that ticks me off more than anything is a restaurant that you pay before you get your food and there is a tip column on the bill. Now how are you supposed to determine the tip amount if you haven’t got the service yet? This is the case where a tip is just expected.

Even if the tip is voluntary, it is still expected and if you don’t tip, you are seen as being cheap, not making a statement of how crappy your service was. I wish employers would not figure the tip into the employee’s salary, and if and only if they deserve a tip, they can increase their salary.

From: bowriter
06-Sep-16

bowriter's embedded Photo
bowriter's embedded Photo
Usually, I made about as much on tips as I did in salary. However, when I became a partner or sole owner, I felt that the charge for the hunt included all my services. If I was offered a tip, I took it. This was especially true, guiding fishermen. But in the same vein, I did not expect or solicit a tip and in many cases, as owner/operator, I was not offered one. I did suggest the hunter tip the housekeeper and the guys working the skinning shed. They were salaried.

Perhaps that will explain just my take on tipping the owner. I never wanted the client to feel I expected to be tipped when he had paid me a few thousand up front. Fishing is the hardest guiding in the world although usually the least physical. You cannot get over 18-feet away from the client. So, different rules apllied for me. :)

From: APauls
06-Sep-16
"Why don't they increase the cost of the hunt in order to pay the guide more?"

Because then their hunt would cost more than others and they might not book as many hunts. It would be nice to simply pad prices when we need some more money but the free market doesn't work that way does it?

Just like the outfitter that is an owner/operator. Maybe he HASN'T built anything "extra" into the hunt cost, because he is trying to keep overall hunt cost down. You would prob know when you booked it if it was a "good deal" or not. He's got bills to pay, so maybe that's how he got the extra revenue.

If you think guides make too much money - go be a guide. Free market - nothing is stopping you. I happen to know we actually have a shortage of good guides in Canada and I get offered many guiding jobs every year. As a full time guide you can expect to be away from family for 1/2 the year and have seasonal unemplyment so build that into your financials.

A suggestion when you give your tip (thinking of when I have been the guide): Tell the guide what you thought of his service. It seems that the actual moment of giving the tip is this awkward moment everyone knows has to happen at some point and then you want to get it over with and get out of there. I had a couple clients pull me aside and say: "You know what Adam we had a REAL good time this week, and you worked your tail off and we just want to say thank you and here's a tip." That's the best kind of tip.

Really, I want to know what you thought of how I worked for you. If you tell me, that is a big thing. When people simple drop you some cash and take off, now you are looking at the monetary amount to see what they thought of your services, which leads it open to interpretation. Over the course of a hunt, the guide is going to know what background the client is coming from, so if the guy is a bluecollar worker who saved up for his hunt, tells the guide he did an outstanding job etc etc and gives him a reasonable amount of cash I can't see anyone being upset.

Just some thoughts I've had while reading the thread.

From: Brotsky
06-Sep-16
These tipping threads are all the same. Search for any of them that have popped up over the years and they all end up with the same comments. There's no right or wrong answer, only you know in your heart what the right thing to do is. Just listen to it and make it easy to live with yourself afterwards. Enjoy your hunt!

06-Sep-16
Everything you have said Link, I have said. I'll sum it up, if you aren't happy with your salary rate, take that up with the outfitter. Not the client. But, you know you can't because others will do it for less than you'd demand for an equal salary. So, you bum hole the clients that refuse to make up the difference. Yep, that sounds like what happens when people become accustomed to something that others offer as a gesture of grace. They loose sight of it in the big picture and take it for granted by beginning to expect it.

I like you Link. I'm not putting you down. I'm just pointing out everything you've said in this thread. So, don't get mad at me. You said it.

I'm done. I hope I haven't offended anyone by pointing out what has been said. God Bless men

From: BigRed
06-Sep-16
I'm all for tipping. I do think the guides, wranglers and cooks perform a difficult job in not always the most enjoyable conditions.

Over the years my tips have increased, mostly due to having more income. I usually plan on 10-15% depending not so much on success, but more on effort. And here's why.

I'll tell a short story on my last guided hunt and you tell me what you would have done. I'm leaving out the names since the outfitter is a sponsor on the bowsite.

On the drive out, the outfitter called and said his one and only available guide was hung up (in Canada returning from his own hunt), and he wouldn't be able to pack me into camp until the guide arrived. 2 days later I was packed into camp by another wrangler/outfitter hired by my outfitter. My guide finally arrived later that afternoon almost falling off his horse from being drunk as a skunk.

Hunt day one, my guide spent half the day, 4-5 hours sleeping on the mountain side claiming his body hadn't acclimated to the altitude. (BS, sleeping off a hangover). I spent the majority of the day glassing the elk on the opposite ridge trying to come up with a game plan for day two.

Hunt day two, after another night of drinking my guide was finally on his horse almost an hour after the first hunters left camp. We headed for the ridge (against the guides wishes, not where he wanted to hunt). Upon arrival, was set-up at timber line below a herd of over 100 elk. After a couple of failed attempts of him cow calling trying to coax them down to us, he tells me he has to make a satellite phone call to his wife who was threatening to divorce his ass. I was in shock, as he scurries off to make his semi-private phone call while I'm left watching the herd amble around and thru the timber below us. At this point I was ready to get the outfitter up to camp to have it out.

Once he returned from his phone call he immediately wanted to drop into the timber to pick up the chase. I continued to stay in hunt mode during his "break" and determined the elk were simply circling thru the timber and were heading back to above treeline in another drainage cut. I immediately headed to where I thought they were going with the guide in tow claiming I was making a mistake. To wrap this up, I shot my bull 15 minutes later exactly where I said they were headed.

I did leave a tip for both him and the wrangler/cook (poor kid was pulling double duty). But not the planned amount. I scaled his drastically back, and left a larger tip for the wrangler/cook. Both did a really good job packing my elk off the mountain.

This was not anywhere close to the services I was expecting, and I'm telling this simply as a word of caution. Although I was successful in shooting a great bull, the actions and demeanor of the guide made the hunt less than enjoyable, and same to be said about the outfitter since he was obviously running his business at the bare bones to maximize profit. And simply tipping a planned percentage is not how I'll handle these situations in the future.

Good luck all... Base your tipping decisions on the services provided.

From: 320 bull
06-Sep-16
"I have left a $1000 tip for a $5000 business dinner because the staff did a great job. Did they work harder than the gals at Waffle House? Probably not, but the gals at Waffle House don't work at the Mondrian in Beverly Hills." Holy crap man 6k on a meal!!!!

From: Waterdawg
06-Sep-16
I've simplified my approach - $150/day tip. I've given this to my PH in Africa twice, sheep hunt, elk, mule deer, bear, fly fishing tarpon guides, etc. In general, the $150/day has been a larger tip than average for them.

I tip $150/day even if I am hunting with the outfitter. It helps to get prime dates/locations in the future and first crack at cancellation hunts.

From: Bob H in NH
06-Sep-16
I will say this thread is probably the most predictable thread every year!

Comparing to wait-staff at a restaurant is not fair, that industry pays well below minimum wage and the tips are actually factored in for pay and taxes and even reported on W2. The "wage" they make essentially boils down to $0 on a pay check as it's all in taken in taxes when tips are included as they automatically are with credit card bills etc.

Guides are paid a wage, they then get tips in cash and I would imagine go unreported as nobody but the guide and hunter know about them.

I am all for tipping, and 10% seems reasonable as a guide mark, but it all varies, not all guides/hunts are equal. A typical whitetail hunt where you are escorted to stands and left on your own, vs an elk hunt where you are never apart, vs something like a remote tent hunt where the guide cooks etc EVERYTHING for you, they are all different and in my opinion all different in the tip "calculation"

Some guide/outfitters if you tip good will get you good return guides, some outfitters say don't tip, I already pay them, others say 10-15%.

Do what feels right to you, but a tip is somewhat "standard" now a days.

From: Bou'bound
06-Sep-16
"A typical whitetail hunt where you are escorted to stands and left on your own, vs an elk hunt where you are never apart, vs something like a remote tent hunt where the guide cooks etc EVERYTHING for you"

I'll be the cost of those three hunts are very different. it's not like all hunts cost the same and the tip is the differentiator between low end minimal work and high end full service offering.

From: Surfbow
06-Sep-16
Some of you 'non-tippers' also seem to forget that these guides are only guiding a couple months per year, as a part-time gig. They have to make ends meet the rest of the year too, which probably means they can only have a part-time job somewhere else. Two part-time jobs don't very often produce the same income as one full-time job...

From: Matt
07-Sep-16
"I'm not saying they are getting rich. I'm not saying they shouldn't be tipped. I'm just saying that demanding a hunting guide be tipped cannot be economically justified. It is a choice. Not a criteria."

The most economically efficient compensation structure would tie 100% of compensation back to the performance of (or utility generated by) the worker - pure performance-based compensation, no salary. At the other extreme, an all salary compensation scheme is the most economically inefficient as it does not directly tie compensation to performance and can result with good and bad workers earning the same wage.

So what you are saying is efficiency can't be justified economically? Go on.....

From: bowriter
07-Sep-16
A whitail guide may not appear to work as hard as an elk guide but often, he has done the work before the hunter gets there.

Try scouting and hanging 50-stands in the late summer heat. Then, moving them as food sources and deer travel changes, while the hunter is hunting. Then, go collect the hunter, blood trail and drag out his deer, skin and quarter it etc. On many days, starting at 3:45 am, we would not get to bed before 10:30.

A tip is and should be, always on a voluntary basis. I never asked for one in my life. But anyone who has ever guided on a serious, professional level and been successfull at it, certainly puts in the work, in many instances, before the client ever gets there. In some camps and at some lodges, the tips are pooled. I never much cared for that system.

From: Fuzzy
07-Sep-16
X2@ Matt

From: LINK
07-Sep-16
WV I understand what you are saying and yes there probably are people that would do the job for less without tips even. Most of those people however would not be quality guides. I don't expect a tip for doing my guide duties that are outlined in the hunters contract. I'm to help them get their animal, gut and quarter it. Here's the problem I usually end up boning the animal out into bags supplied by me or hauling the meat many miles to donate it to someone. On top of that I'm asked to cape the hide off the head and cut the skull plate off the skull. I often end up taking the head 30-60 miles to a taxidermist for the client. For those hunters that enjoy an evening drink, myself and my fellow guides usually have some in on ice purchased by ourselves(and no I don't drink on the job or very often at home as far as that goes). I go above my guide responsibilities to make the client happy and for that I expect some compensation. I've only one time had a hunter tip me below an average price and he was a pos from day one. Wouldn't it be nice if outfitters could just raise the price 500$ per hunter and adjust guide pay accordingly. Then all guides would be compensated nearly the same regardless of performance. Then some would act like government employees because they would know they have a paycheck coming regardless of effort. The fact is the money is coming from the client either way and in an industry where tipping is the rule I see no problem in expecting a tip for hard work and extra effort. What do I know though I usually leave 15-20% at restaurants because I know I'll be coming back and I don't want my food contaminated. I don't complain or send food back and the only way I'm not tipping is if I plan on never eating there again.

From: Mtgoat
07-Sep-16
"Why don't they increase the cost of the hunt in order to pay the guide more?"

I know of one outfit (Three Forks Ranch) that has gone to that system. If anyone still wants to leave a tip, it goes into a kitty that gets divided among the entire staff. They make it very clear that tipping is not necessary or expected. As they put it, they "pay the guides very, very well."

From: Mtgoat
07-Sep-16
I have struggled with this for many years. I asked other hunters with more experience on guided hunts. I asked outfitters, guides, etc. I've heard and read about many different approaches. However, I have settled on 10% as my number. That seems to be a pretty good number. It seems to fall in the range given by the "experts".

I make an exception if I have a terrible guide - then it can even go to $0. I also make an exception if I feel that a guide went above and beyond what was required. Another exception is when we get really lucky or good and manage to bag a real monster. Finally, the % for the tip goes up if the hunt is for dangerous game.

In general, you will be safe with 10%.

From: Ambush
07-Sep-16
One thing we can all agree on is that; guides, past guides and future guides all agree that hunters should generously tip guides.

I tried a little experiment last night with my wife. After a good meal, I suggested that she should be compensated for her extraordinary effort.

She flatly refused my offer and then added "NO, not even just the tip!".

From: Scar Finga
07-Sep-16
AMBUSH,

That is Funny!!!! Sorry for the rejection though! LOL!

From: DonVathome
07-Sep-16
Funny Ambush!

I definitely think you should tip the outfitter if hr guides you. I would admit I might tip him a little less like 15% instead of 20%.

From: Junior
07-Sep-16
Does anyone all of a sudden not want to give the guide the tip? lmao to funny Ambush!

Lets rename this to a gratuity?

From: South Farm
07-Sep-16
"I never understood the model of don't tip the owner if he is your guide rule."

What I never understood is the whole model of tipping. Owners (of whatever type business) should simply bake tips into the cost of their product and pass that along to the worker (i.e. guide in this case). If the guide don't think the owner is compensating him fairly he's free to go work elsewhere. I hate this whole tipping thing altogether, be it an outfitted hunt or meal at the local cafe.

07-Sep-16
As long as guys have the balls to tell guides in advance of the hunt they will absolutely not be receiving a tip they will start to understand.

From: LINK
08-Sep-16

LINK's embedded Photo
LINK's embedded Photo
Ambush I give my wife a tip after a good meal. I do the dishes.;) Man I'm getting hungry.

From: Fuzzy
08-Sep-16
Ambush, good one!

From: Ambush
08-Sep-16
Link, I am a bit jealous.

But there is a rumour that a weak spine contributed to poor penetration. :{

From: Fuzzy
08-Sep-16

Fuzzy's embedded Photo
Fuzzy's embedded Photo

From: Spiral Horn
08-Sep-16
Very emotional topic, and another that causes divisions between hunters, guides, and clients not being treated equally.

Been on many fantastic and some really lousy hunts. A good number guides busted their tails for me, some were aloof and condescending, a few were drunks, and still a few others seemed annoyed that they had to go through the motions. But, regardless of success or the quality of service provided, they ALL expected a tip.

I've always tipped what I thought was fair amount to my guide and any other people that provided a sizable amount of personal service on the hunt - cook, etc -- and have almost always been invited back to hunt. But think that threads like this do somewhat of a disservice, as after being in many hunting camps around the world feel that it is safe to say that the average guide is not receiving a median15-20% tip as many are suggesting -- which may leave a few guides feeling shorted by some solid clients.

In fact, tipping is mostly an American thing. My African PH friends tell me that most Europeans don't tip at all, and folks from most other areas of the world don't either.

Also, the expectation of tips often leads to shenanigans in camp. Remember one particular hunt where upon a arrival in camp a guy announced in front of everyone "I'm likely the biggest tipper in this group." Did he get favorable treatment - Yes. But, many of the other clients noticed and vowed never to return.

Do guides deserve a good tip - often, yes. But, they should always conduct themselves as hunting professionals. I love returning to hunt with a fun and good guide who has a passion for hunting, it's like spending time with an old friend.

Also, although some say the outfitters rely on guide tips to keep hunt prices down, that just looks like an excuse. The hunt prices go up considerably each year regardless.

From: Spiral Horn
08-Sep-16
Very emotional topic, and another that causes divisions between hunters, guides, and clients not being treated equally.

Been on many fantastic and some really lousy hunts. A good number guides busted their tails for me, some were aloof and condescending, a few were drunks, and still a few others seemed annoyed that they had to go through the motions. But, regardless of success or the quality of service provided, they ALL expected a tip.

I've always tipped what I thought was fair amount to my guide and any other people that provided a sizable amount of personal service on the hunt - cook, etc -- and have almost always been invited back to hunt. But think that threads like this do somewhat of a disservice, as after being in many hunting camps around the world feel that it is safe to say that the average guide is not receiving a median15-20% tip as many are suggesting -- which may leave a few guides feeling shorted by some solid clients.

In fact, tipping is mostly an American thing. My African PH friends tell me that most Europeans don't tip at all, and folks from most other areas of the world don't either.

Also, the expectation of tips often leads to shenanigans in camp. Remember one particular hunt where upon a arrival in camp a guy announced in front of everyone "I'm likely the biggest tipper in this group." Did he get favorable treatment - Yes. But, many of the other clients noticed and vowed never to return.

Do guides deserve a good tip - often, yes. But, they should always conduct themselves as hunting professionals. I love returning to hunt with a fun and good guide who has a passion for hunting, it's like spending time with an old friend.

Also, although some say the outfitters rely on guide tips to keep hunt prices down, that just looks like an excuse. The hunt prices go up considerably each year regardless.

From: Drop tine
08-Sep-16
Really interesting topic and a good discussion. I find the idea of a percentage a little simplistic as it doesn't necessarily take into account how hard the guide has worked or other factors that may come into play.

I was in one camp of a sponsor here where the guides made it very well known that one repeat client was regarded as as poor tipper and he was not treated as nicely (borderline rude at times) as the other hunters. But he did get his animals and they did the work to get them out.

What do you do when you need to move camp and then another guide takes over?

Any differences if it is a 1x1 vs 1x2 or 1x4?

What if the hunt actually only takes place over a full day or less( I am thinking of the Greenland Muskox hunt, though obviously there is fishing and sightseeing as well)?

What if you got a discounted hunt, do you still base the tip on the original price of the hunt?

From: Trial153
08-Sep-16
An interesting thing is hunts that have a standard 2/1 guide ratio. Most hunts offer a 1/1 upgrade in the 1000 plus range as an option. I would assume it's to pay the additional cost of the extra needed guide. However keep in mind that it's in addition to the original base price which should have had some of the cost built in. What I am getting at is there seems to a disconnect on some level if guides are honestly working with a dependence on tips to provide a decent wage. And this is coming from someone that for the most part is a pretty liberal tipper. I don't think an honest respectful discussion on this is out order.

From: JakeBrake
08-Sep-16
Ambush Thank you for your posts… Finally a voice of reason in the world of tipping.

10% after I've dropped $4-6,000 on a hunt???? When the guides did what they were paid to do??? They feel a tip is owed them and they expect it and will possibly never book me again if I don't tip...and my character gets called into question??? Backwards if you ask me

From: Thornton
08-Sep-16
I guided a guy to his biggest buck ever- a 172" 10 pt. The a**hole gave me a $50 tip.

From: Bou'bound
08-Sep-16
Wow. The a**hole must have really thought little of the overall experience with you even with a big deer killed.

From: Trial153
08-Sep-16
Can't say I find it hard to believe. I guess personality does trump inches ....

From: TSI
09-Sep-16
It shouldn't be assumed that guides are not paid well by their employing outfitter.Always interesting how much some worry about how guides/outfitters income should be topped up or limited by clients.In reality tips are not mandatory in most places and the average tip is less than 10% usually about 5% if it's given.to do it or not is personal and there's no set standard.

From: Scar Finga
09-Sep-16
So it looks like it boils to entitlement for some guides. You guide so you automatically think you deserve a tip? How's That? A tip is a way to show appreciation to someone for Going Above and Beyond! It's like getting a bonus for doing a really good job at work. Not everyone deserves a bonus! I am sure not every guide deserves a tip.

Calling someone an a$$hole for only tipping $50.00 is pretty A$$hole-ish in my opinion! Maybe that's all he could afford, maybe he thought the rest of the hunt sucked regardless of how big the animal was.

If I am paying a boat load of money to go on a guided hunt, I expect the guide to work his butt off to get me on an animal. He should be friendly and courteous, am the customer. That is what he is getting paid for! That being said, I am a very generous tipper, typically I will tip 20% if the service is really good. But I expect very good service for the money I am paying. I work way to hard to just give my money to someone that is just barely doing their job or not doing it at all! If someone is a jerk or has a crappy attitude or is a drunk , If possible I would be in touch with the outfitter so fast it the guide would get dizzy! 5K and up for 5-7 days is a ton of money to a lot of us!

Just my 2 cents.

Scar.

09-Sep-16
I wish we could get rid of the expectation of a tip. A few things would need to change. In the restaurant business servers need to earn a living wage without tips. In other services the same is true to some extent. On the other hand I worked for a carpenter one school vacation. We built a garage together. We worked hard and fast. At the end of the job he gave me a bonus greater than my total earnings at the agreed hourly rate. He explained to me he agreed on a price and we finished in less than half of the time he had allocated. Extra work should have extra compensation. Standard work should carry a standard price. In Europe tipping is not expected. Typically all is well if you round up to the nearest Euro. In China the wait staff can be insulted if you tip.

From: Thornton
09-Sep-16
Boubound- sounds like you are able to reason with ungratefulness yourself. BTW, his hunt was great.

From: Scar Finga
09-Sep-16
Thornton

Did you ask the man why the tip was so small or if he had any issues on the hunt? Perhaps something you were not even aware of? Just Curious...

Scar.

From: Bou'bound
09-Sep-16
Thornton,

No actually I was just reacting to your colorful and graphic assessment of the person and wondering if he could possibly have been so disenchanted with other aspects of the hunt that a trophy animal did not compensate for the other things. Probably not. He was more than likely just a cheap a**hole like you said.

It's funny........we say, and sometimes are told, that it is not the size of the animal (or even if any animal is taken or not) that should impact the experience and the tip. That is usually framed up on the downside, meaning, not scoring is no reason not to tip if all else is as expected or better.

Actually I totally subscribe to that 100%.

The principle does cut both ways though. If you buy into the filled tag (or not) does not matter and size does not matter then there is really no reason to expect a tip just because someone took a monster right?

Which way is it, because it can't be both.

From: Fuzzy
09-Sep-16
Bou, I get what you're laying down there.

My first guided/outfitted (early fall, baited)bear hunt, I hunted an extra day, and never even SAW a bear.

Not the fault of the guide or outfitter, bears were hitting baits briefly, and sporadically, as there was a lot of natural food available.

My luck just ran to always being on the wrong stand , or off the stand, when a bait was hit. The guide worked very hard to get me where I needed to be, LONGER than he was expected to.

Had I killed on, say, day 3,4, or 5, there'd have been much less work involved ...so uon packing to leave, both guide and outfitter were shocked when I came out with 10% tip (actually a bit more, I rounded up to nearest hundred) .... My take is, they put forth the effort, they get the tip. My luck, or my hunting/shooting performance, shouldn't factor.

From: Drop tine
09-Sep-16
I suspect some of the 'low tippers (or cheap a**holes if you prefer)' may simply be due to ignorance.

If you don't spend half of your day on bowsite or some similar website (I am making an assumption that there are people like that), you may not know what the 'norm' is for tipping on a hunt.

If you have saved for 3 years to go on a hunt, the idea of giving a guide a $1000 for 5 days work on top of $7000 for the hunt may seem ludicrous. If you are used to tipping $5-10 for a meal, giving a $100 may seem like a lot. Don't know this for a fact, but have been in a camp where there were guys on their first hunt (as it was for me too) and they were looking at tipping $100-200 and thought that was plenty.

From: TXHunter
09-Sep-16
This debate has a lot of moving parts - always has. I have random thoughts.

I don't think the outfitting/guiding industry is on par with the restaurant industry, but I do think the outfitter/guiding industry is trying to implant that idea more and more. With much success. I see a definite "entitlement mentality" that I used to not see.

I will tip a helluva lot more if one is not suggested or discussed at all than if it is.

As said above, 10% used to be the standard, now it is stated as 15-20%. Why? The hunt costs have gone up exponentially, so why should the % increase??

I think 10% as a standard to work with is fine on hunts up to about 8-10K. Then go up or down from there. Higher than that it should not be based on a percentage.

I think there is a vast difference in wilderness guides vs. whitetail guides. I am from TX and hunted whitetails for 45+ years - I personally have a hard time even accepting the concept of a "guide" for whitetails. I dang sure wouldn't tip a "guide" on a 15K whitetail hunt $3,000. Or even $1500. (Though I might for an elk or sheep guide - maybe.)

Good guides know who can afford what and who cannot. And they will use their common sense. A good hunter is way more important than how one tips if the guide is a man of any substance. And any hunter will reward effort accordingly to the extent he can if he is a man of any substance.

Bottom line: Get two men of substance together - and you will never have a problem.

From: JakeBrake
09-Sep-16
Snag and LB shooter...well stated!!!

From: Ziek
09-Sep-16
"I dang sure wouldn't tip a "guide" on a 15K whitetail hunt $3,000."

Anyone that would spend 15K on a whitetail hunt must have so much money, he wouldn't miss an extra few K.

From: Matt
09-Sep-16
"It's funny........we say, and sometimes are told, that it is not the size of the animal (or even if any animal is taken or not) that should impact the experience and the tip. That is usually framed up on the downside, meaning, not scoring is no reason not to tip if all else is as expected or better.

Actually I totally subscribe to that 100%.

The principle does cut both ways though. If you buy into the filled tag (or not) does not matter and size does not matter then there is really no reason to expect a tip just because someone took a monster right?

Which way is it, because it can't be both."

It absolutely can be both so long as one, like most who have posted on this thread, subscribes to the notion that a tip is understood to be a component of the compensation scheme.

From my perspective, a guide whose hunter kills a monster on day 1 or a guide who works hard to last legal hunting light on the last day of the hunt are equally worthy of a generous tip. Many people value the trip as much as the destination.

10-Sep-16
saw a multi millionaire worldwide corporation ceo tip a young, hardworking guide $357 last year for a 357 inch archery bull. Embarrassed me just being there. Most of the guys in elk camp with me tip $600-$1000 for 6 day hunt. More for extra effort, quality experience etc. yes, I have tipped a lot more for bigger animals but that has more to do with the subsequent brown water celebration than rationale or principal. Often guys also sweeten the deal with extra gear as a gift

Worked my way thru school in part as a guide/ charter boat mate and really appreciated the tips ( well , not the $3 from the a......e from Birmingham when they caught three sawfish and 19 wahoo) so I hope someone will tell me if I am too cheap.

From: Bou'bound
10-Sep-16
Matt, If one believes the concept of a tip is NOT a function of the outcome of the hunt, which you and I agree it is not, then one (in this case Thornton) can't complain that the outcome alone (in this case a 172" deer) is justification for a tip.

From: Gun
10-Sep-16
For what it's worth. I've guided Moose a bit for an outfitter near home. I don't accept tips. I tell hunters to keep it. "If you had a good time that's good enough for me". Save it for a deposit to come back.

From: Dave
10-Sep-16
"If you don't spend half of your day on bowsite or some similar website (I am making an assumption that there are people like that), you may not know what the 'norm' is for tipping on a hunt. "

Actually, it's some of the guys on Bowsite who are out of touch with reality and apparently think tipping 15-20% makes their richard seem bigger. 15-20% for some hunts is ridiculous. A $100/day starting point is more than generous and fair for most hunts. Go up from there for good service and down for poor service.

From: Thornton
10-Sep-16
The guy couldn't have been happier. He had previously hunted another county with a different guide hired by the same outfitter. He was not seeing much with them. The first morning he hunted with me, he shot the huge buck, his biggest ever that he has yet to beat. He won a contest in his home archery shop in Georgia with the buck .The guy had money, and so did his friend, who also did not tip me. His friend missed a similar sized buck the next day.

11-Sep-16
saw a multi millionaire worldwide corporation ceo tip a young, hardworking guide $357 last year for a 357 inch archery bull. Embarrassed me just being there. Most of the guys in elk camp with me tip $600-$1000 for 6 day hunt. More for extra effort, quality experience etc. yes, I have tipped a lot more for bigger animals but that has more to do with the subsequent brown water celebration than rationale or principal. Often guys also sweeten the deal with extra gear as a gift

Worked my way thru school in part as a guide/ charter boat mate and really appreciated the tips ( well , not the $3 from the a......e from Birmingham when they caught three sawfish and 19 wahoo) so I hope someone will tell me if I am too cheap.

From: JakeBrake
11-Sep-16
You are too cheap You did your job and got paid for it (I assume) the deal is done

You are part of the reason threads like this get started...entitlement.

From: TSI
11-Sep-16
Complaining about the amount of money you got for a tip on a public forum is bad form for a guide and if you worked for me you would be fired minutes after the post!this thread comes up every year and serves no purpose other than a rant for some.A tip regardless of amount should be thankfully accepted anyone that can't say thankyou shouldn't guide period.Guides are employed and paid fairly despite what they sometimes tell clients a tip is a bonus not an obligation!

From: TXHunter
11-Sep-16
Ziek - 15K whitetail hunts are fairly common in TX. I have never been on one nor do I desire to go on one, but plenty of them exist.

From: Will tell
11-Sep-16
I'm in the barber business and for some reason everyone thinks they need to tip me. I'm a pro and you get my best service tip or no tip, I charge enough to make a living. I would rather have a Thank You than a tip. Some of my customers are on pensions and can barely but groceries, they need the money more than me. I'm sure if a guide sees this is your trip of a lifetime and you saved up for years to go he wouldn't expect you to go home broke. On the other hand my son guided in Montana and the cheap outfitter made all the money so he really needed the tips to survive.

From: Kolbeck
12-Sep-16
Reading through this thread, I've learned that people are different, shocker. I've been on a handful of guided hunts and I've been lucky. Not always at punching my tag, but lucky in that I've always had a good experience with my guide. I liked the advice from above when the guide said he liked it when the hunter thanked him personally and let him know how his service was. I believe in this and a tip just reinforces that you were happy with the guides service. When saving up for a hunt, I figure in tipping as part of the hunt cost. Around 10% +/- for me.

From: Bou'bound
19-Feb-20

From: oletrapper
19-Feb-20
I hate the idea of tips in general... To all the haters below me on this thread, I repeat, I hate the idea of tips in general. You are welcome to see it differently. And i promise, I will not call you names, bash you, or make you try and see it differently :) PS, this is cyber world, so we get to say and do whatever we want behind these key boards :)

From: yooper89
19-Feb-20
I'd hate to have you as a client, olecheapass

From: oletrapper
19-Feb-20
^^^^^ You will never have to worry about that :) But i appreciate you taking the time for name calling. Seems real professional.

From: welka
19-Feb-20
Here’s a twist. $7000 elk hunt. Guide $3500, landowner tag $3500. Tip 10% on 7000 or 3500?

From: Medicinemann
19-Feb-20
$3,500

From: JakeBrake
19-Feb-20
Wish more guides had Will Tell’s mentality How it should be in my opinion Well stated

From: Fuzzy
20-Feb-20
oletrapper, the financial status of the individual providing the service should have no bearing on the payment for services. Flatly stated, based on industry practices a guide tip IS an understood part of payment for services albeit on over which the customer has control.

An analogy here is the local "mom and pop" restaurant. If "pop" decides he wants or needs to take your order, bring your food, and refill your drinks, then he is wait staff at that point. As a diner, you are expected to tip him 15 to 20% provided the service was good.

If he is doing great financially an can afford a fine house and a summer home that's great, but none of your concern, any more than if he's struggling to pay the rent.

Same way with the regular wait staff. If "Buzz the waiter" is a rich kid who only has a job b/c his parents insisted he experience the working world before he segues into the lifestyle of the rich and famous he still gets 15-20% if he serves well. If "Breanna" the waitress is 23 and a 7 months pregnant mom of 4 who is working two full time jobs to keep the lights on, still 15-20%. The only way either gets less is if the service sucks. If you feel sorry for " Pop" #2 or Breanna and want to gift them more than 20% well God Bless you.

If you feel you work too hard for your money to "waste" it on tipping Pop s #1 OR #2, or Buzz OR Breanna, then you need to stay home and cook or hit the drive thru.

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