Post is a director of the Emily Post Institute and author of three etiquette books, including "The Etiquette Advantage in Business: Personal Skills for Professional Success." He also writes a weekly syndicated newspaper column on business etiquette, "Etiquette at Work."
According to the Emily Post Institute website, holiday gratuities depend on several factors -- how often you use the person's services, your relationship with the person, the amount of time you've worked together, and your budget.
Post offered the following suggestions for holiday gratuities:
Au pair: A gift from your family (or one-week's pay), plus a small gift from your child
Babysitter, regular: One evening's pay, plus a small gift from your child
Barber: Cost of one haircut, and/or gift
Beauty salon staff: The cost of one salon visit, split among the staff
Child's teacher: Check your school's policy first, as gift giving may be prohibited. If allowed, then give a gift that is a token of appreciation from your child, not cash. Possibilities: a homemade gift made by your child, a book or a picture frame. Or, consider participating in a joint gift from the class as a whole. Possibilities: a gift certificate to a restaurant or bookstore.
Day care providers: $25 to $70 each, and/or a small gift from your child for the providers who give direct care to your child(ren)
Dog walker: One week's pay and/or a gift
Fitness trainer, personal: Up to the cost of one session
Garage attendants: $10 to $30 each
Home health employees: A gift, but check with the agency first, as most agencies have a no-gifts or no-tips policy. If this is the case, consider giving a donation to the agency.
Housekeeper/cleaner: Up to one week's pay and/or a gift
Letter carriers: U.S. government regulations permit carriers to accept gifts worth up to $20 per occasion, not cash
Live-in help (nanny, housekeeper, cook, butler): One week's to one month's salary based on tenure and customs in your area, plus a personal gift
Massage therapist: Up to one session's fee, and/or gift
Newspaper deliverer: $10 to $30
Nurse, private: A gift, not cash
Nursing home employees: A gift, not cash, but check the company policy first. Consider giving a gift that could be enjoyed by or shared among the floor staff: flowers, chocolates or food items.
Package deliverer: A small gift if you receive deliveries regularly; most delivery companies discourage or prohibit cash gifts
Personal caregiver: Up to one week's salary, and/or a small gift
Pet Groomer: If the same person grooms your pet all year, up to one session's fee and/or a gift
Pool cleaner: Cost of one cleaning, to be split among crew
Residential building personnel: Check with your building association first to see if there is a holiday fund that is shared among all the building personnel
Superintendent: $20 to $80
Doorman: $15 to $80; $15 or more each, for multiple doormen
Elevator operator: $15 to $40
Handyman: $15 to $40
Trash/recycling collectors: $10 to $30 each (for private service); for municipal service, check local regulations
Yard and garden worker: $20 to $50