Opinion: Take the Risk and Tip Your Garbage Guy
My wife Jodi and I tip our postal carrier and garbage guys every year at Christmas. They're hardworking people who are often taken for granted in our society.
People just expect that the garbage will be taken away by the time they get home from work and the mail will be in the box, sorted and not damaged. Thankfully, there are dedicated people willing to take on the stress of your expectations and brave the elements to make sure your mail is delivered and your trash is removed.
For your mail carrier, it's as simple as cash in an envelope left in the mail box with your regular mail. Generally speaking, thieves aren't trolling through neighborhoods opening mailboxes looking for cash so it's relatively safe and there's a great chance the intended recipient will get your tip.
On the garbage side, I had a caller on Tuesday who said there are groups of criminals and ex-cons who will target certain neighborhoods and steal the tips you leave taped to the cans.
First tip is to tape the envelope on the inside of the can. Second, and this only works if you're gonna be home during the pick up, is to either tape a note asking them to come to your door OR just go out and meet the crew and hand them the cash tip. Either way, take the risk and do your best to brighten the holiday of some of the hard working people who make your life easier.