Why Cashless Tipping Solutions Are So Important for Frontline Hotel Workers

October 15, 2022
Stephen Alemar

Fewer and fewer people today carry cash, which makes cashless tipping solutions like Canary Digital Tipping more important for frontline hospitality workers than ever. 

Cashless tipping solutions can drive up to a 5X increase in staff tips and help hoteliers at both full- and limited-service properties significantly improve employee attraction and retention.

In this post, we’ll walk through exactly how hotel operators of all kinds can use cashless tipping to drive more tips for their staff and enable guests to show appreciation quickly and easily. 

Why Cashless Tipping Matters Now More Than Ever to Hotel Workers 

There has been an ongoing decline for years in the amount of cash that consumers carry on a regular basis. The reasons for this range from an increased reliance on debit and credit cards to the emergence of eCommerce as a dominant force in the economy. Then, COVID-19 happened and the number of consumers that used cash for any kind of transaction cratered. 

Unfortunately, this decline in cash-carrying landed a massive blow on frontline hospitality workers like hotel housekeepers who historically relied on these tips as a substantial part of their income. 

Fortunately, modern cashless tipping solutions that enable hotel guests to leave tips without the need of anything more than their smartphone, can help solve this problem.

How Cashless Tipping Works 

Cashless tipping solutions use a combination of mobile-friendly digital tools that can be easily accessed via any smartphone. 

Typically when a hotel deploys a cashless tipping solution, they will strategically distribute QR codes around a property that link to the solution when scanned. This provides hotel guests with a super simple way to provide tips easily from their mobile devices — without any new app downloads required.

Canary Technologies’ cashless Digital Tipping solution also offers guests the flexibility to leave tips by individual or department and enables hoteliers to distribute tips based on their own preferred methods. 

The Benefits of Cashless Tipping 

Just because people are carrying less cash doesn’t mean they are inclined to tip less. In fact, early research has shown that cashless tipping solutions can increase tips to frontline hotel workers by up to 5X and wages up to $4 per hour. 

Let’s quickly take a look at some of the specific benefits that come with a post-cash tipping world.

Improved Staff Retention & Attraction

As stated above, cashless tipping solutions can have a huge positive impact on the amount of tips employees receive at a hotel. This is especially important in 2022, as the industry still finds itself dealing with a historic staffing shortage. In fact, according to a study conducted by American Hotel & Lodging Association (AHLA), 97% of hotels reported staffing shortages at their properties. 

With good help harder to find than ever, cashless tipping solutions that boost employee take-home pay can help hoteliers create a huge incentive for current staff members to stay and future workers to apply. And this increase in pay happens without hurting a hotel’s bottom line. 

QR Codes Make It Clear When To Leave Tips 

Tipping behavior in restaurants has always been pretty clear, but in hotels — not so much. Often, it’s not clear to guests when they’re supposed to leave a tip. However, since cashless tipping solutions use strategically placed QR codes around a property, there is never any doubt when a tip is encouraged to be provided to staff members.

Guests Choose The Exact Amount They Want To Tip 

Cashless tipping via a web-based solution also allows guests to select the exact amount they want to tip instead of being held captive to what they have in their wallets. If a guest only has a $10 bill, but wants to tip $5, that’s a problem they have to work through. With a cashless tipping solution, this is no issue at all. 

Tips Can Be Given by Individuals or Departments 

On top of the ability to choose how much they wish to tip, guests can also use cashless tipping solutions to choose whether to direct a tip to a specific individual or an entire hotel department. This unique feature of cashless tipping solutions makes it much easier for property management teams to deal with pooled tips while still allowing employees to collect tips individually. 

Flexible Deployment 

Forward-looking hoteliers should always opt for new digital solutions that help prevent them from complicating their hotel tech stacks — and this goes for cashless tipping solutions as well. 

A robust cashless tipping solution will provide the options to be deployed as a part of a larger Guest Management System or as a unique tool that can be separated out from that system. This flexibility in implementation enables hoteliers to choose exactly how they want tipping to work at their properties. 

Personalized Staff Profiles 

Personalized staff profiles associated with each team member allows guests to put a face and name to the service they so deeply value. Staff profiles with names and photos have been shown to significantly increase tips for employees over time by building a more personal connection with the guest.

Digital Tools for Tip Management & Reporting  

Cashless tipping solutions make it easier than ever for hotel operators and management teams to collect and distribute tips. Tips can be distributed on a pre-set schedule and all tax forms are automated to ensure compliance. And everything of this is managed in one consolidated platform. 


The hospitality industry has undergone massive changes in the past few years and hoteliers have had to find new ways to adapt. The pandemic changed consumer behavior forever. By and large, people are more comfortable using technology to engage with businesses than ever — and many even expect it. 

This preference for digital solutions paired with the consumer tendency to carry less cash, makes it the perfect time for hoteliers to consider cashless tipping solutions to boost wages for their frontline workers and improve their employee attraction and retention rates.

Interested in bringing a Cashless Digital Tipping solution to your hotel? Contact a Canary specialist today to learn how you can increase tips for your employees by up to 5X! Book your demo now!

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