The Potential of Millennials’ Hotel Tipping Power

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Tipping is a tricky practice, especially at hotels. Guests might be unsure about proper tipping etiquette, feel they can’t afford to tip, or simply forget that service behind the scenes is what makes their trip so great. As guests start to come back to hotels after COVID-19, there’s one group of people in particular that will be of interest when it comes to travel and tipping: millennials.

 New research shows that millennials are the generation most likely to travel in 2021. People in this group (those born between 1981 and 1997) are 88% more likely than both Gen X and Boomers to be willing to travel by the fall of this year. Yet this readiness comes with a caveat. Research has also shown that millennials are among the worst tippers, with more than half considering tipping “optional” across the board.

 Some of this is an act of protesting tipping culture. Millennials tend to be more socially conscious than older generations, and they’re inclined to think that staff shouldn’t have to rely on tips for a living wage. That said, millennials are also highly likely to work in hospitality positions themselves. That means when they do tip, their average amount reflects this understanding and empathy and is usually higher than what others give. In short: millennials don’t often tip for a variety of reasons but when they do, their tips are good.

 How can hotels leverage this millennial tipping power? By tapping into their preference for digital payments and interactions. Smartphones have become personal extensions for this group, with more than 60% of millennials in one survey saying they’d be more likely to leave home without their wallet than without their phone. Another study found that 32% of millennials envision a cashless society in the near future where physical currency will no longer drive business transactions.

 With all of these factors at play – millennials’ likelihood to travel, their low tipping track record but high quality of tips, and their affinity for digital payments – it only makes sense that hotels turn to a cashless, mobile tipping solution. Services like eTip would be a terrific way to access millennials’ tipping power in the hospitality sector. Using QR codes to link to digital tip jars for service workers, our cashless, app-less platform is accessible, digital, and easy to use. Learn more about eTip here.

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