Have you ever wondered if there will be repercussions for not tipping a bellboy at a hotel?
The answer to this question is revealed in a fascinating Q&A thread with a bellboy who works on the Las Vegas Strip.
The 25-year-old, whose job entails carrying bags and opening doors for guests, lifted the lid on what it’s like working at ‘one of the most expensive, premium hotels’ on the Strip after he took to Reddit’s ‘IAmA’ forum, writing, under the username ‘getgapped’: ‘I’m a bellman… ask me anything.’
Scroll down to see his responses, which touch on bellboy ‘revenge’ for non-tippers, the ‘weirdest’ thing he’s seen on the job and more besides…
SALARY AND TIPS
A bellboy has revealed what it’s like working at ‘one of the most expensive, premium hotels’ on the Las Vegas Strip (stock image)
Just how much money can you make as a bellboy? That was a question posed by one unnamed user, prompting the hotel worker to reveal that while hourly pay is ‘nothing special’, with tips he makes around $65,000 (£50,000) per year.
‘It’s affected a lot by what kind of shift you have – mornings or nights, what door you work, and so on,’ he explained.
In a later post, he revealed the older generation of hotel bellboys recall ‘coming home with hundreds or even thousands of dollars’ back in the ‘golden days’ of the industry. He explained: ‘Nowadays a more realistic end-of-day goal is $150 to $200 (£116 to £155).’
Another Reddit user, ‘InterestingPerson84’ – who revealed they were applying for a job as a bellboy – asked about how many tips to expect ‘on a slow weekday’ and ‘on a busy weekend’. In his reply, the seasoned bellboy said that it varies from hotel to hotel and depends on how busy it is.
He wrote: ‘Gather a consensus from the other guys around you if you [get the job].
‘If the guys in full-time day/swing shifts seem to comfortably make $100 (£76) or more a day then it’s a good spot. Because bellmen don’t pool, your best days will be pretty sweet looking and your bad days will make you want to pursue other lines of work.
‘But if you’re at a good property, and especially if you’re in a good shift, it all evens out in your favour in the end.’
‘If you don’t need help it’s actually better you don’t ask for it, because it frees us up for people that do,’ said the bellboy (not pictured, file image)
Several Reddit users were intrigued by the etiquette of tipping, with user ‘Coherentspoon’ asking: ‘Is it rude to decline the service of a bellman and just carry my own bags? Would there be some form of retaliation from the hotel staff?’
The bellboy replied: ‘Absolutely not. If you’re more comfortable carrying your own things, that is 1,000 per cent within your right and wouldn’t be held against you.’
He added: ‘If you don’t need help it’s actually better you don’t ask for it, because it frees us up for people that do.’
‘Light_Dark_Choose’ wondered how non-tipping customers are treated and whether ‘the workers secretly punish them’, to which the bellboy replied: ‘There are levels to it and shades of grey.
‘If we’re helping a guest we know is not [going to] give us anything there will certainly be a degree of drop in effort and enthusiasm, but we’re only human.’
Once the bellboys are out of sight, ‘things get less nice’, with the Reddit forum bellboy revealing that he has seen other bellboys in the past ‘tossing bags around’ and ‘being a little extra rough’ with luggage to vent their frustration.
If you don’t have cash to hold up your end of the exchange… carry your own bags. Hate to say it, but as someone who’s worked in this industry, that’s my honest take
He said: ‘The safest way to go about it is if you don’t have cash to hold up your end of the exchange… carry your own bags. Hate to say it, but as someone who’s worked in this industry, that’s my honest take.’
The bellboy recalled one incident where a guest with 20 bags needed their bags to be taken downstairs in a hurry but didn’t tip. He revealed that, in retaliation, the bellboys in question were deliberately slow to bring the bags down.
He said: ‘The guys taking bags at the room aren’t out at the curb and vice versa, so we wouldn’t have to worry about seeing [the guest] again and there are a million reasons [why] we could say it took a long time.’
The bellboy added that the team have ‘discreet’ ways of letting other bellboys know that certain hotel guests didn’t tip. He said: ‘I’m not saying it’s me doing these things, but guys get understandably agitated when it comes to their main source of income.’
ODD GUEST BEHAVIOUR
As part of a trio of questions, ‘LegoMyAlterEgo’ quizzed the bellboy about the ‘odd’ requests he receives ‘on the clock’
Steering the conversation in another direction, ‘GandalfTheJaded’ asked the worker what was the ‘weirdest’ thing he’d seen on the job.
The bellboy’s answer? Apparently, he witnessed a hotel guest urinating in front of ‘hundreds of people’ after getting escorted out of a daytime beach club for being ‘too wasted’.
User ‘LegoMyAlterEgo’ wondered whether any guests ever asked him for tips on sourcing escort services or drugs, to which the bellboy replied: ‘I get asked those questions by young guys that don’t know any better. This job is considered somewhat sought after in this city so it would be pretty dumb to actually try and hook someone up like that.’
He added: ‘Same with being “propositioned” as an employee – the answer must always be no.’
In a similar vein, ‘Appropriate-Divide64’ asked: ‘Do you have shady contacts to get clients what they ask for?’
The bellboy was quick to shut the question down, saying that his place of work was too ‘fancy’ for such goings-on.
He said: ‘Even if I did, or one of my coworkers did, the likelihood that we’d risk a job that’s pretty hard to get for [the] maybe $100 (£76) that we might be bribed with is pretty low.’
The bellboy revealed that the German luggage brand Rimowa is his favourite
On a lighter note, some Redditors wanted to know about the bellboy’s personal taste in luggage and the different cars he sees rolling up outside the hotel.
He revealed the German luggage brand Rimowa is his favourite, adding: ‘Louis Vuitton [luggage] isn’t as practical but I do like the classic brown pattern.’
The bellboy, who used to work as a valet, went on to reveal that Porsche GT3s used to be among his favourite cars to drive for guests. He said: ‘Anything that’s fun and interesting and not absolutely disgusting inside is welcome.’