Gransnet forums


Feeding workmen

(105 Posts)
Lesley60 Wed 05-Aug-20 17:26:11

I’m just wondering if you are expected to feed workmen.
I am having a new kitchen fitted and the cooker and fridge have been disconnected, I offer endless cups of tea, biscuits and crisps or cold drinks to the fitter but I feel guilty if my husband pops out to get us a sandwich and we eat it in the living room, the kitchen is like a bomb site so I’m unable to make one in there.
Should I have to buy this stranger a sandwich or should he bring his own.

MawB Wed 05-Aug-20 17:29:58

No you are not expected to
Regular cups of tea or coffee (maybe water if it is hot) and maybe a biscuit in the afternoon is more than enough.

Pantglas2 Wed 05-Aug-20 17:30:34

The offer of tea and biscuits is a given but I’ve never know a builder not to have a massive lunch butty box😇

welbeck Wed 05-Aug-20 17:41:26

if one of you is going out to purchase a sandwich, why not ask fitter if he'd like one too.
he may not be staying on site over lunch, he may have brought his own, he may accept; who knows.
why not just include him.. surely you can stand the cost of an extra sandwich.
or better still, just get one anyway; if he doesn't want it, that's an extra half each for you two.

biba70 Wed 05-Aug-20 17:43:01

with welbeck on this one.

Kate1949 Wed 05-Aug-20 17:44:07

I always keep them provided with drinks, no food. At the start of lockdown, people were told not to give workmen drinks. They should bring their own food and drink. I don't know if that advice has been relaxed.

Tangerine Wed 05-Aug-20 18:04:13

I don't think you should offer food. If you do it one day, you get landed with asking every day.

This would be my view even if Covid didn't exist.

lemongrove Wed 05-Aug-20 18:05:08

Tea and biscuits only.They don’t expect anything more and always bring their own.

TheFrugalPiggy Wed 05-Aug-20 18:15:38

As someone who used to manage a large team of workmen I would say that you certainly don't need to provide anything more than tea, coffee and biscuits. When the chaps I managed used to come back from a job I always asked them if they were treated well. The customers who offered refreshments and biscuits were always remembered for being decent.

Doodle Wed 05-Aug-20 18:16:18

pants good to see you haven’t changed a bit since our school days 🤣🤣. 😇indeed.

Grandmabatty Wed 05-Aug-20 18:23:33

I feed my handyman as he works very very hard and will turn his hand to anything. So he gets a bacon roll when he arrives and a sandwich of some sort at lunch time. However I know him and his family well, he is very obliging and he's the only one I feed. Anyone else, tea and biscuits.

tanith Wed 05-Aug-20 18:32:08

No, unless the workers are two of your strapping GS's then its two bacon and egg rolls for lunch and Grandmas tea & cake mid afternoon and at least one large pack of bickies 🤣🤣

Fennel Wed 05-Aug-20 18:44:57

It depends on the circumstances. I always offer tea/coffee etc to those who come to do a short job. And toilet facilities. Usually they thank and refuse.
Our cleaning lady likes water and a piece of fruit.
But on our last major house move the wet weather delayed the job and the workers had to stay overnight to finish it off.
They slept in their van but I gave them a very basic evening meal (eggs beans and chips plus lots of bread) and they had a shower too.
I wouldn't want to go through that again.

BlueBelle Wed 05-Aug-20 18:57:56

Tea and biscuits or cake and one day I gave some guys taking all day to get a huge tree down bowls of ice cream they were very happy as it was a hot day

TrendyNannie6 Wed 05-Aug-20 19:02:48

We don’t feed workmen they bring their own lunch but we always provide countless tea coffee and cold drinks

MawB Wed 05-Aug-20 19:09:57


The offer of tea and biscuits is a given but I’ve never know a builder not to have a massive lunch butty box😇

Ooh you are awful, but I like you!

quizqueen Wed 05-Aug-20 19:16:54

I only provide drinks. Giving biscuits as well puts you on the slippery slope. I've never know a builder to starve while on a job!

Orangerose Wed 05-Aug-20 19:20:12

Absolutely not. Just tea Or coffee.

Puzzler61 Wed 05-Aug-20 19:21:59

Usually work men who come to my house are offered hot or cold drinks and the use of the WC.
When we had windows replaced, the team were a man and his son, and they quickly found we had steel window casings that needed to be drilled and pulled out first.
I felt sorry that their work was so much harder and I offered bacon rolls, fishfinger sandwiches, and ham and cheese toasties for the 3 long days they worked here and they were gratefully accepted.
Upon leaving the dad said “if you get any problems after this, let us know, we will look after you. You’ve looked after us like a Mum”.
It was an unusual case though.

sodapop Wed 05-Aug-20 19:24:53

I think its sufficient to provide drinks and biscuits, no more than that. French workmen don't even accept that but do have a two hour lunch break. They work through until 6 or 7pm though.

diygran Wed 05-Aug-20 19:26:18

During house renovation we always offered tea/coffee and biscuits, crisps.
Also offered to buy sandwiches for them while getting our own.
Most didnt want lunch but it's good to offer.
My late mother would never offer food as a matter of principal! I then did the same when getting work done on her former house. I offered tea and biscuits. Workman weren't pleased and wouldnt touch anything I offered. Made point of telling me they had been to shops to buy sandwiches....and did a poor job.
Lesson learned!
Although they were friends of friends I didn't employ them again.

Jaxjacky Wed 05-Aug-20 19:32:11

No, my husband is a tiler, he’s grateful for coffee. We normally have mates to do jobs, coffee/tea biscuits, few beers put in at the local.

Nightsky2 Wed 05-Aug-20 19:42:22

Always biscuits with tea and coffee. Sometimes a piece of cake or a chocolate bar if I have any but never a sandwich as they always bring their own lunch which they eat in their van.

Nightsky2 Wed 05-Aug-20 19:45:37

Puzzler11. 👍

Nightsky2 Wed 05-Aug-20 19:46:07