Do You Tip Escape Room Hosts?

You’ve paid the tithe, the bond has been sealed and your fate determined. Blood drips from the gash in your palm, droplets falling rhythmically onto the cold cement floor. “This is sufficient,” you think to yourself, “I’ve given the masters what they crave.” Hungry eyes burn from the darkness, white-hot and seemingly floating in the void. The thunderous tick of the clock shakes your bones as your time limit comes to a searing end. Teeth. Pain. Nothingness. One thought suddenly floats to the front of your ruined mind: Do… do you tip escape room hosts?

Although not necessary, it is certainly appreciated! At The Basement: A Live Escape Room Experience, it is more customary to tip your actors, rather than your hosts. Even then, there are other ways to show your appreciation for the team of staff members that work hard to make your game awesome. We’ve described the jobs and responsibilities of our team members in a couple of our blog posts. Today, we’ll talk about how to be a guest that we will love and cherish forever. It’s surprisingly easy to go above and beyond.

How to Make Your Game Master Fall in Love With You

(I mean, not literally, more in a memorable and great guest experience kind of way.)

Enthusiasm – Are you Hyped?

When you arrive at the front door of our facility, active readers of this blog, or longtime Basement fans, will know there is a puzzle to solve before entering the building. This is your time to shine. The mindset changes now. From this very first step, the fun has begun and it’s time to get in the puzzle solving zone. We love to see enthusiasm and overall excitement for the escape rooms you’re about to play. It immediately tells us that you are READY to find clues, solve puzzles, and dive into the story of our rooms. We try to match the energy of the guests coming in and nothing’s better than a hyped group of friends.

Fear – Be Prepared to be Scared

Your game hosts have a not-so-secret ambition: to give you a good scare. We classify The Basement as a horror-themed experience, as in, not trying to scare the absolute pants off of you. But we are known to create a creeping sense of unease. The door to The Basement swings open with a long, creaking wail. Toby skitters around in his mask and cloak. Your game master may stumble into the loading hall, panting, bleeding, desperate for your help and attention. They’re not allowed to leave the building, we lock it up tight when night falls. If you’re going to a horror-themed experience, be open to being scared. Don’t be “too-tough” to be frightened. Let yourself play in this space.

Respect – Hey Man, Just Be Cool

This isn’t an issue with most games; our clientele is pretty awesome. While playing our escape rooms, it’s expected that you will treat the actors and staff with respect. Kindness and Active Listening really make a huge difference when coming to play an escape room. In our games, you become the main character of your own story. Our actors and staff are secondary, there to make your experience better. Every game session is made different by the ways players participate, how many players are in the room, and the level of fun they are ready to have. It’s always really clear when a family member is dragged along, or if a group isn’t engaged. When our teams work together, we create incredibly fun escape room experiences for staff and guest alike.

Escape Room Game Tips for You!

Most of the time, it’s the escape room employees who are giving the tips: tips and tricks that is! Just for you, here is a quick run-down of some of the best escape room game playing secrets! Don’t worry too much about beating our rooms, the important thing is having a good time.

Get a Clue –

Search the rooms top to bottom, don’t rush through, take your time investigating. If you feel like you’re missing something, it’s likely an item you haven’t found yet. We recommend designating a “clue table,” any sort of flat space to lay things out and keep them organized. This way you can determine what are clues and related objects, or what could be qualified as irrelevant things. At The Basement, we don’t have any red herrings, but we will have props and other “unused objects” inside of the rooms as set dressing. It’s part of what makes our experiences so immersive, but they’re not meant throw you off track to solving the room.

Keep an Eye on the Clock –

It’s important to keep tabs on how much time you have remaining in your game. Throughout our escape rooms, you may hear audio cues (some subtle, others not) at certain time intervals. It’s good to double check your timer as you play! Although many escape rooms give players and hour to solve their rooms, at The Basement, you have 45 minutes. With less than an hour on the clock, it’s important to not get stuck on any one puzzle for too long. If you’re having trouble with a combination lock, a comprehension puzzle, or finding clues, lean on one of your friends for assistance! This is a great way to use your limited time wisely. You’re all in this together, one person can rarely solve an escape room by themselves.

Communicate With Your Team –

Locks, clues, and tip guides on blog posts are great and all, but your teammates are the real key to escaping. Whether you’re playing with a single partner, or larger groups of 8-10, communicating will 100% help you beat The Basement. Teams that win read clues to the whole group, share when items are discovered, and keep things organized. Remember to be kind to your teammates, as you would be to your host or the actor in the room. As an example: If somebody in your group happens to miss something that might be obvious to you, take care with how you react. You don’t want to hurt their feelings, they are trapped with you for the next 45 minutes, and you probably have to drive them home on the other side of all this.

We’re Cheering for You!

Here at The Basement, although our rooms are challenging, we are always routing for our guests to beat them. We want to see you succeed. What makes our games especially tough is the inability to ask for clues. I mean, you can ASK, but nothing will happen. That’s not to say you won’t get help, it will just come at the whim of Edward Tandy, the cannibalistic serial killer that captured you. It would be a little weird for you to be able to ask your kidnapper how to escape! That being said, clues will be distributed to you in a way that doesn’t break the immersion of the room. Delivered either by your host, or the actor inside of the room, these subtle nudges will help you solve the puzzles yourself, rather than telling you the answer outright.

Lastly, Tipping with Cash or Card

If you would like to show your actors, hosts, or even front desk personnel a little extra love, we make it easy for you. Of course, cash is accepted. We have specially designed tip boxes in our lobby for each room, corresponding to the actors portraying the characters inside. If you’d like to pay via card, just let us know who you would like to tip, and how much you would like to give. This is a very generous gesture and should never be seen as required. It’s a zero pressure zone, we’re just happy to tell you it’s an option.

Thank you so very much for taking the time to inquire about tips for your escape room staff. Our biggest goal is always to ensure that our guests have a memorable, great experience from the moment they arrive. When you and your teammates are having a good time, so are we!

Thanks again for your continued and beloved dedication to The Basement Blog. Follow us on social media for your daily dose of spooky and weird. Tip your waitresses, I’ll be here all week!

Anna Kraus

Hiya! I’m Anna, the Events Coordinator for The Basement: dedicated to creating memorable experiences for all of our guests. My passion for immersive storytelling and themed entertainment drives my written work and personalized adventure crafting.

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