When you drop off your vehicle at an auto repair shop to have some work done, it's a relief to get a phone call to say that the work has been completed. It's an even better feeling to arrive at the shop, take a look at the repair work and consider yourself to be highly satisfied with the quality of the job. Your initial instinct might be to tip the mechanic – after all, tipping is customary in many industries as a way to show appreciation. However, you might freeze when you're not sure how much to tip or if tipping is permitted in the shop to begin with. Brush up on these three considerations and you'll know exactly how to proceed if you wish to tip in the future.

Determine The Auto Shop's Policy

Although many auto repair shops will tell customers that tipping isn't necessary, the management doesn't expressly have a policy that prevents mechanics from accepting tips. Conversely, other shops have clear policies – sometimes even visibly displayed in the waiting area – that tell customers that tipping is prohibited. The best way to learn the policy in your shop if it's not displayed is to call in advance of your visit. This way, if tipping is allowed and you plan to do so, you'll be sure to have the right amount of cash on hand.

Tip Based On The Job Cost

Given that tipping in the auto repair industry isn't as widespread as in the restaurant industry, for example, even tipping your mechanic a few dollars is likely to be appreciated. However, there are some guidelines to keep in mind. Generally, the amount of the tip that you should give your mechanic is based on the cost of the job. If your repair bill is less than $500, you can feel comfortable tipping between $10 and $20. If your bill is over $500, a guideline to keep in mind is $50.

There Are Options Other Than Cash

While it's virtually certain that your mechanic will appreciate a cash tip, there are other methods to explore if you don't want to tip in cash or the shop's policy prevents you from doing so. A simple idea is to return to the shop a day or two after you pick up your vehicle with some homemade baked goods for the mechanic and his or her colleagues to share. If this idea doesn't suit you, a gift card and a note of thanks can also go a long way to showing your appreciation. Contact a business, such as Allan's Alignment & Frame Service (1989) Ltd auto repair, for more information.