Simple Guide On Tipping Massage Therapists

Here’s A Simple Guide On When And How Much To Tip Your Massage Therapist

Tipping Massage TherapistsAs someone who both gives and receives massages, tipping is a personal thing for me.  I take it as a great compliment and a heartfelt thank-you when I receive a tip from my clients, and in turn, I see my tips to other massage therapists as an extension of my gratitude.

But not everyone understands why tipping matters or how much to tip.  For those who are unsure, check out my simple guide on when and how much to tip your massage therapist.

Tipping Etiquette

It’s common practice to tip massage therapists 20 percent of the service cost, which means you’re paying your massage therapist an extra $20 for every $100 you spend. 

This total is based off the true cost of the massage.  If you’re using a Groupon or other discount such as at a massage membership place then you should still base your tip off the true price of the massage, not the discounted price.  Same goes for gift cards, certificates, chair massage, and so on.  This might increase the price of your discounted massage, but your overall price will probably still be lower.  

Of course, no one will ever force you to tip a certain amount.  You may tip how much you feel the service is worth.  Most people feel that if they leave a bad tip, the massage therapist will feel bad or their feelings will be hurt.  Some think that if they don’t leave a good tip, then the next time they come for a massage, they won’t receive a great service. 

Massage therapists are professionals above all.  While no one likes receiving a bad tip, therapists didn’t get into this business to make money.  They got into this business to help people, and that’s what they’re dedicated to.

Exceptions to the Tipping Rules

While I stand by that 20 percent is acceptable for a tip, it’s important to remember that some places have tipping rules of their own. Check out some of these less-common rules:

  • No tips. These places will either let you know ahead of time or have that distinction posted either on their website, in a brochure, or at the front desk.
  • “No tipping.” You’ll usually find medical facilities have these policies.  They don’t formally accept tips, and they usually won’t allow you to add a tip to the credit card but prefer the customer to tip the therapist in cash if they choose to do so.
  • Tip included.  Destination spas/resorts usually include the tip in the cost of the massage.  They are really great at letting customers know that on all their publications but when in doubt, ask.  Because most people don’t know or read the literature, they end up tipping the therapist in cash.  Hence, double tipping the massage therapist.

Why Tipping Matters

Because the massage therapist is helping you gain relief, it’s nice to show your therapist how much you appreciate him or her. That’s why we tip and that’s how we say thanks.


Hi. I’m Felicia. I’ve made a 20+ year career of massage and bodywork. And, I still love it. I also enjoy writing, playing music, photography, cooking, baking and painting. All of which I’m not very good at. I’m also a daily bike commuter.


  1. Melissa April 3, 2019 at 1:03 am

    Yes girl Massage therapists appreciate tips ! It’s never mandatory but greatly appreciated! Thankyou for sharing ! ❤

  2. Vivian Black October 7, 2019 at 10:22 pm

    It’s great that you elaborated on tipping the massage therapist an extra $20 for every $100 you spend. My mother is looking to get a massage soon. These tips will be useful when choosing a professional and how she should tip them.


Leave A Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *