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Most Popular Tip Jobs Where You Can Earn More Than You Think

Working jobs that pay largely in tips are an awesome option for people who love helping people. If providing exceptional service is your thing, these jobs can turn into very well-paying gigs.

Jill Caren
By Jill Caren
Updated February 8th, 2024

I think most of us can say at one time in our lives we worked a job that payed in tips. For me it was a newspaper route and ice cream scooper that got me those tips. I was only a kid so the tips were not large, but they were enough to go get that new comic book and sweet treat.

What was great was that for both jobs I also had an hourly wage. This means I got paid a set rate per hour – and tips were extra. The better service I gave, the higher the tips I would receive.

Tip jobs have their pros and cons though. In this article I will share some top pick tip jobs and outline the good and bad about working these kinds of jobs.


Key Takeaways

  • Tip earnings have a lot of variables like location, where you work, and job type.
  • Gratuity based jobs can average 10%-20%.
  • Personality and customer service will make all the difference in how much you earn in tips.
  • Not all customers will tip you no matter how well you do your job.

Tip Job Earning Factors

All the jobs below do not have a set salary. There are too many factors at play to tell you how much you can earn. When we can – we provide earning details from resources like BLS.gov and Salary.com. We also note earnings from those working these jobs if we could find them sharing details online.

Factors that determine salaries for these jobs include:

  • Location: Some states require minimum wages for tip earners, others do not.
  • Job Type: A waitress may make quite a bit more than a food delivery person.
  • Perception: How people perceive the job will determine how much they tip. Some may value a dog walker more than a house cleaner and tip the dog walker more.
  • Tip Ranges: Some customers may tip nothing, others may tip 20%. There is no formal requirement for tipping.
  • Where You Work: Some companies value their workers more than others which can show in your earnings. Working in fine-dining restaurant will bring higher tips than a diner.
  • Hours: Working part-time or full-time will change earnings drastically.

Salary data noted below comes from a variety of sources including Salary.com, PayScale, BLS.gov, and actual workers in the jobs that shared earnings publicly.

1. Waiter/Waitress

Earn an hourly rate + 10-20% in tips. What state you work in, where you work, and who you work for will play a big part in how much you make. According to Salary.com the average salary is in the mid-$20K range.

Working in a diner will earn much less than working in a fine-dining restaurant. Keep in mind not everyone will tip either, so you need to factor for that.

Working as a waiter or waitress is not easy work. You will need to deliver meals, make customers happy, and engage with them to try and increase their tip amount.

restaurant worker
Waitress taking orders on a tablet. Image credit: Natasha Fedorova / Depositphotos

2. Ride-share driver

Ride-share drivers can earn pretty good money, but it comes with a cost. You will be responsible for your car, gas, insurance etc. This needs to be factored in to your earnings to make sure you are profitable.

Some Uber drivers state they are earning anywhere from $18-25 an hour on average. Some of course make more or less depending on location and hustle.

As a driver you will earn a base fare for each ride, and can earn gratuities from passengers who appreciate your service. Some ride-share companies offer bonuses as well that are tied to your performance.

Keep your car clean, be polite, and give your passengers a comfortable ride. You’d be surprised at how many people are willing to tip for a job well done.

3. Food delivery

Food delivery jobs can also bag good tips. Whether you’re delivering pizzas or Chinese take-out, this gig often comes with the perk of a gratuity.

Tipping rates will vary greatly! You also have to consider wear and tear on your car, gas costs, insurance, etc.

Typically, people tip food delivery drivers because they appreciate the convenience and time-saving aspect of the service. The amount of tips you can earn depends on a number of factors including the frequency of deliveries, distance traveled, and the generosity of your customers.

4. Dog walker / Caretaker

If you’re an animal-lover, dog walking is a job you will enjoy. While most dog walking and caretaker jobs will have an hourly rate, many customers will tip as well. Dog training is another option to get tips if you can help dog parents solve problems.

Knowing their fur-kids are being well cared for and are happy is a priceless service. Many dog walkers will receive a tip at the holiday, but some can earn tips throughout the year.

Dogs being walked by a professional dog walker. Photo credit: Jill Caren Photo

5. Cleaning

As a cleaner, you’ll also find that tips can significantly enhance your income, much like in dog walking. It’s all about providing quality service. If you’re thorough, reliable, and friendly, your clients are more likely to appreciate your hard work and reward you with a generous tip. This applies whether you’re cleaning homes, offices, or even hotels.

The better you’re at your job, the more opportunities you’ll have for earning extra money through tips. If you think about it, a tip is a direct reflection of a client’s satisfaction with your service. So, always strive to exceed expectations, and you’ll see the benefits in your paycheck.

6. Mover

Often, you mightn’t consider movers as a profession that frequently receives tips, but you’d be surprised at how those extra dollars can add up. As a mover, your job is physically demanding and requires a significant level of care to ensure customers’ belongings are safe. Customers appreciate this effort and often show it by tipping.

Tips can vary greatly based on the size of the move and the customer’s satisfaction. While there’s no standardized tip rate, it’s common to see tips range from $20 to $50 per mover for a full day’s work. For larger moves or exceptional service, tips can even exceed this.

7. Errand runner

During your busy day, you might hire an errand runner to help out, and it’s common for these hardworking individuals to receive tips for their services. As an errand runner, your job is to make someone else’s life a bit easier, whether that’s picking up groceries, taking their pet to the vet, or grabbing a last-minute gift.

With the rising popularity of app-based services like TaskRabbit or Postmates, errand running has become an increasingly common part-time gig. On top of your regular pay, you can expect grateful clients to give you a tip for your efficient and reliable service.

8. Grocery shopping and delivery

If you’re a whiz at grocery shopping, turning that skill into a part-time job as a grocery shopper and delivery person can earn you a nice income, especially when you consider the tips from appreciative customers.

You’re not just doing the shopping; you’re saving your customers valuable time and energy. They’ll often show their gratitude with a generous tip. Plus, companies like Instacart and Shipt pay you per order and you keep 100% of your tips.

9. Doorman

Another job you mightn’t immediately think of when it comes to tips is a doorman. While their base salary mightn’t be extravagant, they often make a significant amount from tips.

Typically, a doorman’s duties include holding doors open, helping with luggage or groceries, hailing cabs, and providing information about the local area. In upscale apartments and hotels especially, residents and guests often tip generously for these services.

The amount can vary greatly, but it’s not uncommon for a doorman to make several hundred dollars in tips during a holiday season. Just remember, this job requires being on your feet and dealing with all types of people, but if you’re good with that, it can be quite lucrative.

10. Golf Caddie

Have you ever considered working as a golf caddie? If not you should! This is a job that’s often overlooked, but can bring some really good money. A caddy carries clubs, finds balls, and advises players out on the golf course.

This is one of our top picks for well-paying jobs for young adults.

The secret to the high end tips lies in providing excellent service. Show up early, understand the course, and anticipate players’ needs.

Golfers, especially those at high-end clubs, tend to be affluent and generous tippers. You can earn between $50 to $100 per bag, with tips often exceeding the base pay. Plus, you’ll get to enjoy the outdoors and possibly network with influential people.

11. Exotic Dancer

Ok, I know, a bit rsique. But the reality is, these dancers can make exceptional money. Tipping is common for exotic dancers and can far exceed the salary they make.

Working in a high-end gentleman’s club will be much more lucrative than a dive bar. Of course beauty and personality will go far in increasing the tips you get.

12. Bartender

As a bartender, you’re in a prime position to earn substantial tips on top of your base pay. Your ability to mix a great cocktail, provide excellent customer service, and keep up with the fast pace of a busy bar directly influences your earning potential. Remember, customers don’t just tip for the drinks; your personality and service style also play a big part.

Your tips can vary widely depending on the establishment’s clientele and location. High-end or busy bars in urban areas often yield the highest tips. On a good night, you could walk out with hundreds of dollars in tips. With experience, you can even progress to bartending at exclusive events or private parties, which can boost your earnings significantly.

13. DJ

Spinning records as a DJ, you’re likely to earn tips on top of your hourly pay, especially if your music gets the crowd going. Your ability to read the room and play tracks that keep the dance floor full could significantly boost your earnings. Clients may tip you for your excellent selection, or party-goers might drop some cash in your tip jar out of appreciation for your tunes. Ultimately, the amount can vary depending on the venue, event, and the crowd’s generosity. So, while spinning those decks can be a blast, it can also be quite profitable.

Now, let’s move on to another job that mightn’t immediately come to mind when thinking about tipped professions: the barber.

14. Barber or Beautician

You mightn’t frequently consider it, but barbers actually receive tips regularly on top of their standard charges for haircuts and shaves. Just like waitstaff, hairstylists, and other service professionals, your barber’s effort to give you a great look is often rewarded with gratuity. Typically, a 15-20% tip of the total bill is standard in this industry, which can significantly increase a barber’s income.

So, while a barber’s base pay mightn’t seem enormous, the addition of regular tips can make it a more lucrative career than you’d think. It’s a job that requires skill, precision, and a great deal of personal interaction, which customers recognize and appreciate.

15. Tattoo Artist

Consider getting inked not just for the art, but also to tip your tattoo artist generously as they often rely on tips to supplement their income. Tattooing is a specialized skill that requires precision, creativity, and a steady hand. It’s not uncommon for clients to tip 15-20% on top of the cost of their tattoo. This extra income can significantly help your artist, especially if they’re renting space in a shop or providing their own equipment.

So next time you’re thinking of getting a piece of permanent body art, remember to factor in a tip. After all, you’re not just paying for a service, you’re investing in an artist’s talent.

Now, let’s shift from the tattoo parlor to the hotel industry, where the role of a hotel floor manager also often involves tips.

16. Taxi Driver

Continuing your journey on the road, as a taxi driver, you’ll find that tips can make up a substantial portion of your income. This job is more than just driving; it’s about customer service. You’re often the first face visitors see when they arrive in a new city. Your knowledge of local hotspots, traffic shortcuts, and general city trivia can significantly boost your tips. Remember, a happy passenger is a tipping passenger. Patience, punctuality, and politeness are your best friends in this business. It’s not all about the fare on the meter, those extra dollars in tips can add a significant chunk to your paycheck.

Now, let’s swap the steering wheel for a wine bottle and explore the life of a sommelier.

17. Gaming dealer

Gaming dealers can earn quite a bit in tips. Man casinos will pool the tips from all workers in an area and split the tips evenly. According to Glassdoor, the average casino dealer earns a salary of $45,000. An additional $10,700 is an average that include tips, commissions, and more.

One dealer shared that the average he earns is $42 per hour in tips and $6 per hour in salary.

Every casino will be different with their salary base, so be sure to do your homework!

In a bustling casino, you’re not just a card distributor; you’re part of the entertainment. Your interaction with players, charm, and ability to keep the game lively can boost your tips.

It’s important to note that tips vary depending on factors like the location of the casino and the stakes of the game. High rollers tend to tip more generously. Also, remember that shared tipping pools are common in this profession.

18. Banquet manager

It is not required to tip a banquet manager, but it is a common practice. A banquet manager may earn a salary and then tips on top of it. According to Salary.com the median salary for a banquet manger is $50K.

When a banquet manager receives a tip it is often shared with the team. A banquet manger works with bartenders, chefs, and ore to make an event or meeting amazing. It is not a one person job, so sharing tips is recommended. Tips for banquet managers can be 15-20% of the event cost. Some customers may prefer to give a flat per person amount for each staff member.

States That Require Employers to Minimum Wage Before Tips

If you’re employed in certain states, your employer is required to pay you the full state minimum wage before tips. This law ensures that you’re paid fairly for your labor, even before the tips start rolling in.

States that currently require minimum wages include:

  • California
  • Washington
  • Oregon
  • Nevada
  • Minnesota
  • Montana
  • Alaska

In these states, your income is more predictable as it doesn’t rely solely on the generosity of customers.

Other states have what is called a “tip credit”. This means a business can pay you a lower minimum wage, but your tips need to meet the minimum wage. For example, in NYC, servers can earn $10.65 an hour as their base pay. They would then need to earn $5.35 in tips to meet the $16 per hour minimum wage. If they do not the business owner has to pay the difference.

There is currently a bill proposal remove the tip credit in NYC restaurants.

Remember, tips are meant to be a bonus, not your main source of income. Working in a state that requires this can add a significant boost to your take-home pay.

Which jobs make the most tips?

Jobs where you can earn some of the highest tips include bartender, waiter or waitress in upscale restaurants, and gaming dealers.

Are tips jobs a good career option?

Tip jobs can be a good career for those that excel in customer service and enjoy helping people. But if you need a steady salary and benefits, it may not be a good option. Your income can vary greatly based on time of year, economy, and more.


Jill Caren is an international SEO consultant and founder of 2Dogs Media. She is also a trainer, journalist, and speaker who helps brands increase their organic search visibility, traffic, and conversions. She is also the co-founder of Blue Collar Brain, a resource for those looking to enter a trade career.

She has been featured on MSN, Wealth of Geeks, Hubspot, SEO Powersuite, and other publications for her work as an SEO and advocate for skilled trades.