Tipping a guide...

Discussion in 'Fly Fishing Forum' started by Jonathan Gardner, Jul 30, 2007.

  1. Salmo_g

    Salmo_g Active Member

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    Bob,

    Sorry. Must have been a very poor choice of words on my part. As Andy indicated, we all live on someone else's dime, but I'd add until we earn it and it becomes our own. I sure didn't mean to be depressing or negative. I meant it in a positive sense, in that guiding allows a person to be on the water because he is hired to be, but otherwise wouldn't have been able to afford to be there, for lack of income. I know that if I guided it would only be part time because I'd want some time to fish for myself. My brief but intense guiding experience with 6 days off in a month, and much of that time spent doing laundry, shopping for supplies for the next trip, etc. Never fished less in my life it seemed.

    Jergens,

    If WA shops are taking 30% just for booking, then booking trips is far more lucrative than guiding.

    Sg
     
  2. PT

    PT Physhicist

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    Only if people are willing to book trips with a guide. Then it comes back to customer service which only the better guides will see return clients.
     
  3. Chris Bellows

    Chris Bellows Your Preferred WFF Poster

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    the smiley face after it meant i was joking. i would rather do neither... so i quit guiding and now get to fish as i please when i please (well, the work schedule does mess with the when i please a little bit.)

    actually, one of the worst things about no longer being a guide is the smell. my bathroom used to always smells like lilies.... now.... it's friggin unbearable.

    i get it, i live in one of those hyped up tourist areas. also, i believe you tip and probably tip well... i always felt that clients that worked in the trades tipped much better on average, maybe they just appreciate a good time on the water more than others.
     
  4. Hem

    Hem Member

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    So a quick word on this tipping question.Over the christmas break I fished witha guide for tarpon.We had a long day on the water 7:30-4:30.Saw lots of tarpon,hooking them was another story.You know,the guide (or in this case,the Capt.-this is a huge distinction), was amiable enough,put us on the fish,gave instruction;however at times was hot-tempered,impatient.We only boated two fish, had a few more hook-ups, and as well acouple of bumps.I had a great day,don't know if I'll ever geta chance to do it again.Wish we had caught more,but this was probably a combination of the tarpon being finicky(that day),my inexperience, and the guide either planting me right ON the fish, or putting me out of my range.Tipped him 20%.He made an effort,we raced from location to location,got us on fish,what more can you ask.Oh yeah,all this WITHOUT the snooty,my shit don't stink attitude.Mt. guides take note,yuk,yuk......
     
  5. the central oregonian

    the central oregonian Member

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    Hi guys. Been an interesting talk here. I will throw out exactly what my pull is as a guide since so many people are asking, then give my views on tipping.

    As a Guide working out of a fly shop I figured my average salary on a per hr basis during summer running the most popular river with 2 people in drift boat at $13.53hr or around $200 a day. Fly shop takes 35% booking fee, i pay for boaters pass,shuttle,lunch,gas,gear and flies. Of course as a independent contractor i supply drift boat and rig capable of carrying 3 people and gear also. I also provide the rods and reels, shop rents waders and boots to clients. Not something that people do to get rich at for sure....especially when you consider that it is mostly seasonal and your not going to be guiding every day during peak period. Its a labor of love. I do not guide full time because i cannot afford to, although i might start to since i am having trouble making money as it is.

    Now on tipping. I believe that tipping is up to the individual person or persons on the trip. I am always extremely grateful when given a tip, but i do not expect it. I do not always give a tip to waitresses either. If i am satisfied with the services rendered then i will, if i am not then i won't.
    When guiding i always work as hard as i can to make sure that the people have as good of a time as possible during the trip. I do not do this to earn a tip, i do this to hopefully ensure that they will speak to there friends about the time that they had with me and get referal business.
    I will also say personally that alot of the best tips i got were not cash. I enjoy cigars and have had multiple people tip me with a couple of nice cigars, which was very nice.
    I will say that about 80% of people tip me. Average tip probably between $20 and $40. There are a fair amount of wealthy clients with the fly shop, Lucking into one of those clients and having a big fish day could equate to a tip of $200+ but that is extremely rare.
    I don't really count tip money as take home income, all tip money for me goes straight back into gear for guiding. Clients are hard on rods,reels,lines etc.
     
  6. Winndknot

    Winndknot Member

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    Well said Kaari...we are guides and right now it's 24 degrees outside and not a lot of folks want to stand in a pocket of river with ice on it. We are seasonal and 3 months out of the year...there is very little work. Average it out, and you might be able to eek out a living. In today's world, so much emphasis is based on "how many" not on "how was the overall experience". It's sad to see that there are still those people that base their tips, trips and experience on "how big/many". For us it's about the outdoor quality of life, the beautiful brown trout, the awesome steelie, and the dance of the eagles high above. It's about the big horn ram, or the goslings, or sometimes just the beautiful day in front of us. [​IMG] Dang, I could go on forever, but what I do know is that I traded this[​IMG] for [​IMG]

    If a waitress or waiter, loves his/her job, then it shows and people want to tip...more than that they want to return (especially if the food is good) which exactly is what makes or break our business. It's up to the individual, but think about the experience, we have no control over the weather, water temperature, water levels, hatch or no hatch, and especially the way the client wants to follow the guides advice.

    Tip or no tip, it's all about the quality of life.
     

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  7. johnnyrockfish

    johnnyrockfish Member

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    You ever see those signs at restaurants that say "tipping" is not a city in china.

    I've always wondered about that, I mean doesn't there have to be a city or town or some geographic location in China called Tipping. Or Ti-Ping?

    I used to guide in AK. Tipping is not to be expected, it is to be appreciated. It sounds like a few guides who've responded here that they expect a tip are probably wondering during the whole trip about what kind of tip they're going to get. If true, that's pathetic.

    JR
     
  8. jergensCsquad

    jergensCsquad Joe's brother

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  9. Oh-4wt

    Oh-4wt New Member

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    Thanks Rick iagree
     
  10. troutfly1

    troutfly1 Member

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    IMHO there are several kinds of guides. The guide who wants to teach you something or is willing to do so if you ask, who doesn't watch the clock (gets out early and stays out late), who doesn't require that you buy unnecessary patterns at "HIS" local shop, who doesn't try to belittle or bully his clients, who provides a nice lunch and a comfortable boat deserves a nice tip, regardless of the quality of the bite that day. You know the other kind and they don't deserve s**t, least of all a rebooking.
     
  11. fredaevans

    fredaevans Active Member

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    One of the few posts on this thread that makes a bit of 'sense.' Want to fish the Rogue? You're all in with me (send me a PM:thumb:).

    Fred
     
  12. SpeySpaz

    SpeySpaz still an authority on nothing

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    kudos and props to centraloregonian. seriously, you sound like an honorable dude and a guy I could fish with.

    Bob
     
  13. the central oregonian

    the central oregonian Member

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    Well if any of you end up in the central oregon area let me know....I'm sure we could find some good fishing.....