hidden holiday costs

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Tips for You and You and...You?
Many of us feel so overwhelmed by holiday tipping etiquette that we start indiscriminately handing money to everyone who helps us look and feel better in December.

The solution: This isn't necessary, says Lizzie Post, a co-author of Emily Post's Etiquette, 18th Edition. "Think about holiday tips as thank-yous to the people who help us out all year long," she says. This means that you don't need to give an extra holiday tip (on top of your standard tip) to the woman you've never met before who painted sparkles on your nails. "If you're on a strict budget, ask yourself, 'Who could I really not live without?'" Post advises. That might include your babysitter, your regular stylist who cuts your hair every six to eight weeks, the teen who mows your lawn and shovels your walk. For suggested amounts on what to give them, check out the comprehensive "Holiday Thanking Recommendations" at EmilyPost.com.
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