What you need to know about tipping

Has travel tipping gotten out of hand?

Consultant Keith Anderson of Atlanta thinks so. “I’m 51 years old and I grew up when it was pretty black and white who you tipped. It’s grayed tremendously in the last decade or so.”

Nowadays, it seems everyone has his or her hand or tip jar out, travelers say, and tipping guidelines can be 50 shades — or more — of gray.

A July USA TODAY online travel survey drew 4,700 respondents, with 79% saying “too many people expect something extra.” Seventeen percent said “hard-working people deserve tips,” while 4% said they never or rarely tip.

“The rage you encounter over tipping is incredible,” says Steve Dublanica, a former waiter and author of Keep the Change: A Clueless Tipper’s Quest to Become the Guru of the Gratuity. What to give whom causes confusion, guilt and anger that is heightened by what he calls “tip creep” — the expanding number of workers seeking extra bucks for their services. He even saw a tip jar at a newsstand in a Pennsylvania mall.

READ MORE: What you need to know about tipping

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