No, you don’t have to tip cable installers, and they won’t expect a tip from you, either. While a cable installer is a profession in the service industry, etiquette experts agree that you don’t need to tip cable installers.
Many cable providers forbid their employees or their contractors from accepting tips from customers. For example, Comcast and Spectrum’s tipping policies prohibit employees or outside contractors from accepting tips; many other cable companies have the same approach. Cable installers don’t expect a tip. If their company allows them to accept tips then like everyone else people won’t turn down a tip.
Introduction to Cable Installers
Are you getting new cable service in your house, switching providers, or having an issue with the existing service fixed? Your cable service provider connects you with the world around us through cable-based TV, phones, and the internet.
While it’s a bit of an exaggeration, it often seems that we can’t live without the TV and internet that cable makes possible. According to the National Telecommunications and Information Administration, 73% of all American households have a cable or satellite television subscription. Of the remaining 27% who don’t have cable or satellite TV packages, 40% use their internet connection to stream shows through Netflix, Amazon Prime, Sling TV, and others instead.
Thankfully, when you need to have cable installed or a cable problem fixed, scheduling a visit with a cable guy is only a phone call away.
Can I free stuff like extra channels by tipping the cable installer?
The number one reason people want to know if they should tip the cable installer is that there’s a widespread assumption that it’s an excellent way to get free stuff, like extra channels. This assumption is also the number one reason most cable companies, like Spectrum and Comcast, don’t allow their employees to accept tips.
Still want to give your cable guy a little extra cash in exchange for free stuff, like premium channels? Tips in exchange for ‘free’ channels are becoming less common now since most cable providers block it outright or can detect it.
Your cable service man cannot add channels that you didn’t subscribe for, or, if they can, the cable company can detect it remotely. Once the cable company sees the ‘free’ channels, the cable guy will lose his job, at a minimum. That’s a steep price to pay for accepting your gratuity. It’s illegal and increasingly risky as advances in monitoring are making it a thing of the past. So, don’t ask about tips in exchange for ‘free’ channels.
But what if I want to tip the cable installer?
You might feel like tipping your cable guy because he came when it was freezing and snowing outside, set up your new 50-inch television, the size of the job was large, or he went out of his way to help you. Who doesn’t appreciate good service?
If you feel that your cable installer deserves a tip, a good rule of thumb is to leave $5 to $10. It’ll be appreciated, even though they make more than minimum wage. Depending on the company’s policy, they might not accept it, so don’t feel offended if they have to turn you down.
Instead of offering a tip – or if they can’t accept one – you could offer your cable internet installer a cold drink like a glass of water on a hot day and a warm drink on a cold one.
What’s the one thing the cable installer would appreciate more than a tip?
Cable installers appreciate customers who are prepared for the visit. Don’t miss your appointment time, make sure the problem area is accessible, and if you have a new TV, have it set up already. Your cable guy is not a TV installer. That’s part of our responsibility, not theirs.
Frequently Asked Questions About Tipping the Cable Guy
People often have specific questions about tipping the cable guy. Here are some of the most common questions people ask about tipping the professionals that install cable internet.
Are you supposed to tip Comcast technicians?
No, you’re not supposed to tip Comcast technicians for installing or fixing your cable Xfinity service. Even if you offer a tip, your Comcast technician can’t accept it because it’s against Comcast’s employee guidelines to do so.
Should I tip the FIOS guy?
No, you don’t need to tip the FIOS guy, and they won’t expect a tip, either. It’s just not a thing to tip FIOS installer for installing internet. It also goes against company guidelines to accept tips from customers.
What FIOS installers appreciate most are customers that are ready for their visit. Make sure you’re at home for your appointment time, clear the area they will be working around, and if they’re installing a TV make sure it’s already set up.
Are you supposed to tip Verizon technicians?
No, you don’t have to tip Verizon technicians. It’s not common to tip them, and it goes against their company guidelines to accept tips.
Can Verizon technicians accept tips?
Verizon technicians are not supposed to accept tips as it is against company guidelines to do so. That doesn’t mean that your technician won’t take a tip since it’s unlikely the company will find out about it. Still, most technicians won’t accept tips, and it’s not common for customers to offer them tips, either.
How Much Do Cable Installers Make?
Cable installers earn a median salary of $54,530 per year. While salaries vary by region, it’s a relatively well-paid job staffed by professionals.