Christmas bonus bonanza: Brits set to tip £461 million to domestic service providers

  • This Christmas, generous Brits are set to collectively tip £461 million to domestic service providers including cleaners, window cleaners and refuse collectors
  • Cleaners are set for the biggest windfalls, with people tipping over £12 to the provider of this valued service, followed by refuse workers and newspaper deliverers (both £8)
  • This generosity is likely based on Brits’ long relationships with their cleaners, 11 per cent of those with a cleaner have employed them for over 10 years

New research1 from Direct Line for Business reveals domestic service workers are set for a Christmas bonus bonanza this year. Generous Brits are planning to give out £461 million in bonuses to service providers including delivery drivers, cleaners, window cleaners, postal workers and refuse collectors.

Cleaners are set for the biggest individual windfalls, with those who employ a cleaner planning to tip them just over £12 this Christmas. This is 47 per cent more than the amount Brits plan to tip refuse collectors (£8.18) and 53 per cent more than the amount planned for newspaper deliverers (£7.83).  Online delivery drivers (£6.74) are set to earn the least amount in bonuses this Christmas, although as with the increase in internet shopping and home deliveries they still look to be collectively receiving gifts totalling £56 million.

Those in the 25-34 age range seem to be the most generous, estimating they will give £17.77 as a bonus while those over 65 expect to tip £7.74.

Table one: Amount given in Christmas bonuses to domestic service providers

Service provider Estimated number of people who will give this service provider a bonus Average predicted bonus amount Total bonus amount
Cleaner 6,286,000 £12.05 £75,754,000
Window cleaner 11,001,000 £6.94 £76,365,400
Postal worker 15,191,000 £7.42 £112,795,000
Refuse collector 12,048,000 £8.18 £98,596,000
Online delivery driver 8,381,000 £6.74 £56,465,600
Newspaper delivery person 5,238,000 £7.83 £41,001,000

Source: Direct Line for Business 2019

Brits have long relationships with their cleaners, which likely explains why they are set to receive the highest value tips this Christmas. The average length of time people have employed a cleaner for is just over three years2, although one in nine (11 per cent) have had a working relationship with their cleaner for over 10 years, suggesting this is a relationship which is highly valued.

Nandita Borkakoti, Business Manager for Tradesperson, Direct Line for Business said: “Our research shows just how much we value those who help us at home, whether it’s by cleaning our property, collecting our rubbish or delivering our mail. Christmas is a time of generosity and it’s great to see how many of us plan to extend that goodwill to our domestic service providers as well as our friends and family.”

The Christmas bonus bonanza for the domestic service sector is a consequence of how many people use these services.  Across the country, some four million people pay for cleaners to help in their home, while around 11 million pay for window cleaners. This demand is reflected in the importance of the cleaning industry to the UK economy, valued at £50bn and employing over 900,000 people3.

Cleaners are employed on a near weekly basis, visiting homes an average of 46 times a year, compared to window cleaners’ 17 times. Brits estimate that they spend around £17 on the average visit from a cleaner, compared to £14 for a visit from a window cleaner. This works out as an average monthly cost of a cleaner to be around £67, with men spending around a third more than women per month (£76 vs £56).

Nandita Borkakoti continued: “The cleaning industry is of huge value and importance to the UK economy and cleaners are in great demand. Working in someone else’s property can be challenging though and accidents do happen. Anyone working as a cleaner or starting a cleaning business needs to make sure they have the right level of insurance to cover them in case of any accidents or injuries.”

Freelance cleaners and those working for an agency, should consider taking out insurance. Public liability insurance covers accidental damage to someone else’s property or if someone gets injured because of their work. Legal Expenses is a cover option that provides legal fees and compensation costs should a claim be made against them. For more information on public liability insurance for cleaners and other cover options, visit Direct Line for Business’ on:



Notes to Editors

1          Research conducted by Consumer Intelligence among a nationally representative sample of 1,064 adults

2          Research conducted by Opinium among a nationally representative sample of 2,000 adults between 8-10th October 2019


For further information please contact:

Direct Line Group
Unni Henry
Senior PR Consultant
Tel: 01903 636 149
Email: [email protected]


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