This is a subject I wrote about years ago on my old website (probably 20 website designs ago). It is the question of tipping for the service you are getting at your wedding or not. In CT and other states. the venue includes the tip with the price of the reception. Usually 18%, and something that is non-negotiable. But what about the DJ, Florist, Photographer and Videographer? Well, that is up to you, but I would like to share my thoughts.
When I first started working in weddings about 10 years ago, I didn't even think about getting a tip until the first time it happened. And then I thought, well that's cool, maybe that will happen all the time. And then it didn't. And for a while I was upset about it. I found that tipping the vendors was not something that happened all the time, and I was ok with that. In fact, I am very much ok with that. You as the client are already spending a lot on the wedding, and then you are tipping me for a job that in truth, I have yet to complete. In truth, you don't even know if I hit the record button all night, or if I was just standing there (don't worry, I did have the record button pressed and I wasn't just standing there... the whole time).
Recently I worked a wedding where all the sudden I was disgusted by the idea of getting a tip. Not because I didn't want one (let's be honest, we will all take money if someone hands it to us), but because the photographer that was working the same wedding with me was obsessed with the idea of it and how he was convinced we were not getting a tip. And he seemed really upset about it. Meanwhile I am thinking "Dude, the point isn't to show up and get a tip, the point is to do our job and get paid!" Did we get tips that night, I actually don't remember, not do I remember the name of the photographer. It was the only time I had ever worked with him.
Should you tip? That is the big question. The answer is it is up to you. I know in some families, tipping is part of the culture and that is just what you do. I know in other cases you either have never heard of tipping the vendors or maybe you paid for the wedding yourself you are tapped out. My belief is that the best tip you can give me is a good referral. Tell your friends and family what a great job I did. Write a nice review for me. To me, those are better than any tip. And that's my tip to you.