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gifts for cleaning ladies??

St. John's, Canada
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gifts for cleaning ladies??

I haven't travelled to Mexico, only Cuba. I know in Cuba it's common to leave little gifts for the maids. Is this done in Mexico as well? Or do you just tip them with money?

Northern US
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for Playa Paraiso
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1. Re: gifts for cleaning ladies??

The best gift for service personel in Mexico is cash. Unlike Cuba there are large discount stores like Walmart in Mexico so citizens can buy what they need.

North Carolina
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2. Re: gifts for cleaning ladies??

I agree, cash is king in Mexico.

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3. Re: gifts for cleaning ladies??


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4. Re: gifts for cleaning ladies??

We left cash but I also leave a small gift. I think it is a nice jesture.

Playa del Carmen...
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for Playa del Carmen
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5. Re: gifts for cleaning ladies??

I think it's a nice idea. I think it is rather risky in the execution, however.

For example, you might bring a gift for your cleaning lady to discover that she is male. Or you might bring a family-oriented gift to your cleaning lady to discover that she's single and without kids. Or vice versa. Or you might bring a gift of sweets to a cleaning lady who doesn't like them, or a gift of perfume to someone who does in fact have kids and would rather get a slightly nicer tip to have more cash to spend on things she needs for them. Or, as someone pointed out, you might bring a gift that is readily available at not too much expense in the area already.

Apart from the appropriateness factor, well of course even if _you_ know that you're bringing a gift and adding it on to the tip you would already have given the cleaning lady, the cleaning lady might well nevertheless have the impression otherwise (even if you happen to speak Spanish and try to explain it away). So like on the previous point, if you think about it from the perspective of the person providing the service, well you can easily imagine that they might wonder about whether this was the appropriate way to go or what it might mean.

You can even drift into territory where the recipient may be -- again, regardless of how good your intentions might be -- insulted or feel that the attempt is patronizing, perhaps if not on a personal level then on a more social one, reflecting the different economic statuses in general of Mexico and other nations.

And then you've of course got to pack said gift, which is in almost every case going to be slightly to much more bulky than money.

Of course, everybody can decide for themselves, but when you start to consider all this against just plain old tips -- including more tips, if you want to give something more -- and the fact that tips are what people are working for, after all, and can never run the above risks... Well it becomes kind of a no-brainer, imo, to go with the money. :-)


Southern Maine
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6. Re: gifts for cleaning ladies??

I agree- go with the cash, not only for the reasons mentioned, but also because taking trinkets from a guest's room may call an employee's honesty into question. Even if there's a note, it would be too risky for me to take a chance with it.

Cash, with a note saying "this is for you, thank you", one size fits all.

Destination Expert
for Cancun
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7. Re: gifts for cleaning ladies??

Cash is always best. It's pretty presumptuous and condescending to give trinkets to people rather than money. I always think of how I'd feel if someone decided to give me a bonus in perfume or chocolate rather than money. Not too pleased. Our maid has been a man, older women as well as young women over the years. Money fits all.


8. Re: gifts for cleaning ladies??

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