Tag: new york

Holiday Tipping Infographic

Holiday Tipping Infographic


Ah, the holidays.  Wait, have we said that before?  This infographic, created by New Yorkers, gives you an idea of how much you should tip certain people for the holidays.  Granted, in New York there are a lot of people to tip, but I’m betting that people in many different towns and cities have helpers they need to tip, and this guide gives you a good idea.  And, if you’re like me and too poor to have a housekeeper, handyman, etc., at least you know how much you’re saving by not having to tip those nonexistent people in your life.  But I digress…

What to Tip?

Your superintendent or resident manager should get on average $75 to $175 for the holiday tip.  Tip your doorman anywhere from $25 to $150.  For the porter or handyman, $20 to $30 should supposedly suffice, though I wonder if I care more about the guy who takes my rent check every month or the guy who came out at 2 AM to fix my dishwasher.  The garage attendant is supposed to get $25 to $75.  As for domestic helpers, a nanny should get a week’s salary as a Christmas tip, a babysitter should get the equivalent of an evening’s pay, and the housekeeper should also get a week’s salary.

Your newspaper carrier should get $5 to $15 dollars.  Your hairdresser should get $25 to $100 (I guess depending on how your hair looks that day…), your manicurist should get $10 to $50, and the dog walker should get a week’s salary.  Dog walker?  Really?

When to Tip

It is acceptable to give out your holiday tips anytime in December through February, but most people give their cash gifts, aka tips, in the weeks before Christmas.

Unusual Gifts

Some people decide to give gifts that aren’t cash.  Some strange gifts that have been given to doormen include perfume, a used car, a smoking jacket, and some CDs, and other people have given baked goods, wine or champagne, or cuff links.

100 Year’s Perspective

This is an interesting chart that shows the dollar equivalents between tips in 1911 and 2011.  For instance, $3.00 to the maid in 1911 comes out to $68.75 today.  Check out the chart for more dollar equivalents.


Design:  B-

It’s kind of fuzzy, and I’m not crazy about the graphics or the colors used.

Information:  A-

Good information, if you need to know how much to tip the people who make your day to day life easier for you.

Source: Holiday Tipping Infographic presented by apartment rental reviews site Rentenna.com, with thanks to the BrickUnderground 2011 Holiday Tipping Guide.

Saving Money on International Calling

Saving Money on International Calling


The creators of this infographic describe it by way of this little blurb:

“Ensuring that you stay in contact with family and friends while traveling abroad requires careful planning. The infographic provides a step-by-step guide on how to research phone compatibility with international servers as well as selecting a mobile operator that will help you save money in the long-run. Interesting international phone call statistics are used to highlight the growing importance of cross-continent telephone usage.”

The infographic has pleasing colors and appealing graphics – the stick figures at the top with their cans with strings attaching them made me smile right away.  I always wondered why anybody would ever think that would work – that you could talk into cans attached by string?  Turns out, according to some science blog, that it DOES work over short distances because talking into the cup creates vibrations that travel along the string, causing the same vibrations to happen in the second cup, thus making it possible for the person to hear what the other person said into the other cup.  The string has to be tight for this to work.  And, obviously, phones work better, especially for international calls.  Anyway, I digress….

Underneath the cute cartoon stick people with their cans and string (a string that is not tight, mind you) is a question from an (I assume) imaginary person named Sally Cavill who is asking about the least expensive way to keep in touch with her daughter, who is going to be in the U.S. for a month.  The infographic is branded by the company that created it, and that company happens to be a U.K. company.  The answer to “Sally’s” question comes from the company, who set up the rest of the infographic by stating that they’ve summarized the best ways to keep in touch inexpensively.  They finish up with “Sally” by giving some tips on what her daughter should do before leaving the country.

Phone Bill Savings Methods

This section gives an overview of the best mobile networks for U.K.-based people to stay in touch from all over the world.  They include the O2, Vodafone, Orange, T Mobile, and Three mobile operators, and give you a summary of the plans available for international calling.  They then go into the PC-based ways to stay in touch, mentioning Skype, Yahoo! Messenger, Jajah, and Fring, discussing the offerings of each.  Finally, they give two options for calling cards and SIM cards – Story and IDT, and give you the scoop on those. They use the company logos, which helps the would-be shopper and researcher become familiar with the brand they are referencing, but with so many competing colors, even though the infographic is generously spaced, it still seems a bit busy.

Cheapest to Most Expensive Methods for Staying in Touch

The next section rates the methods mentioned in the previous sections from least expensive to most expensive.  The typeface used throughout the infographic is pleasant and easy-to-ready, but again I find myself distracted by the colors.  The background of the whole thing is shades of blue honeycomb pattern, so the use of red, lime green, orange, and yellow, while easy to see, is a little off-putting.  This section, however is very informative, and presents the information in the last section in a more condensed way, showing the viewer, from cheapest to most expensive, the options for staying in touch while overseas.

Interesting Facts

This is where it gets busier, but also very interesting.  The honeycomb changes colors (to a disturbing bruise color, really) and informs the reader that the first TransAtlantic call took place on March 7, 1926 from London to New York.  I wish it said who made that phone call, but that’s OK.  The infographic then shows the top five fixed line call destinations from the UK – the use of red is still bugging me here – and the top 5 are…well,  look up there. It’s all right there on the image.  Then there are statistics from 2009 showing the number of UK households that use VoIP and the percent of people in  the UK who are VoIP subscribers, and then there is a little section about Skype.  Even though they use the blue color for that section because it’s the Skype color, I would have like to have seen blues throughout.  It would have been easier on the eyes, I think.

Design:  B-

The colors were distracting, and the thing was a little too spread out for my taste, though I liked the cartoon people and the typeface used.

Information:  A-

A handy guide for someone in the U.K. who is looking to travel and stay in touch with family members without spending a fortune.

Source:  Avoiding A Large Phone Bill When Travelling Infographic from EssentialTravel.co.uk


San Francisco Battle of the Bridges

San Francisco Battle of the Bridges

20110513 Elance sftravel bridgesB

This infographic might be very interesting to a person who lives or works in San Francisco.  To someone who doesn’t, it was mildly interesting to see the differences between the Golden Gate Bridge and the still-to-come Bay Bridge.  If you’re a bridge fanatic, this is exactly the kind of stuff you like.  Unless you’re an extreme bridge fanatic, in which case you’ll probably already know all the information given on this graphic, and will want more detailed information about how many man hours each will take, the amount of paint it will take to paint the lines on the road, and stuff like that.  Or, if you’re afraid of bridges, this graphic could give you a big old case of the heebie jeebies.  But I digress…

Bridges in San Francisco – There Was a Big One, Now There is Going to Be A Bigger One

Assuming everyone cares about the difference between these two bridges, the biggest question here is what the researcher considered to be the criteria for “California’s greatest bridge.”  Does the location make one greater than the other?  Is the older one greater because it was built first, in a time that provided more challenges to a project of its scope?  Is the newer one greater because it is much longer?  The infographic  shows which bridge comes out on top for each category, but doesn’t state earlier in the graphic what will actually determine the “greatness” of the bridge.  I’m thinking a different title might have been more appropriate.  The data collection is great, but the organization of the Bay Bridge stats, and then more stats below compared to Golden Gate Bridge stats was a little confusing for me.

San [Font] Cisco

The title font is just awful.  I see what they were going for – a Rice-A-Roni sort of feel, but it doesn’t work for me and, let’s face it, nothing looks good with it.  The typeface right below it is a serif font, but later in the graphic there is a clean typeface I think they should have used throughout.  I think everything from “Today’s Bridges” down looks fantastic, and gets the point of the graphic across.  I just wish they had “tallied” up to see who “won.”

Which Bridge Is Better?

In the side by side comparison, the bridge with the “greater” stat had its data presented in larger letters or numbers, to indicate who “won” for that category.  Again, had there been a tally or conclusion at the end, I would have liked it better.  They probably want the viewer to decide for themselves, but I guess I’m lazy, because I wanted them to tell me which bridge was greater.

As infographics go, I think this one accomplished the goal of communicating data, though the mix of typefaces was a little much for me, and if they weren’t going to come down on one side or another I wish they’d presented the comparison in a different way.

Design: C-/B

C for the top part with all the wonky typefaces, but B+ for the lower section.  From “Today’s Bridges” down it was a quite attractive infographic.

Information:  A-

It tells loads of information about both bridges.

San Francisco bridge information about Golden Gate Bridge facts and Bay Bridge Construction submitted by SFTravel.com

Asian Longhorned Beetle Killing New York City Trees (Infographic)

Asian Longhorned Beetle Killing New York City Trees (Infographic)

asian longhorned beetle infographic

Asian Longhorned Beetle Killing New York City Trees

What a novel concept, an infographic that actually gives information that is crucial and possibly life-changing…at least to some trees. While not a true infographic in the most strict and classical sense of the word, it does graphically display the area where the Asian Longhorned Beetle is having a devastating affect on the trees in New York.

The content is interesting, especially if you are  a resident of New York, and provided in an easy to read format. The problem is broken down and then a solution, also easily seen, is given. How handy.

The graphics are well done, if not spectacular, mixing photography with computer graphics. A illustration of the insect is included, but an actual photo would be nice for identification.

This is a great way to get out a public service message and the care in design is evident.

Infographics Scorecard

Design: B
Graphics are handled well, but a missed opportunity took the grade down for not showing a photo of the Asian Longhorned Beetle.

Content: A-
What more could you want? Just the facts. Here’s the problem. Here’s the solution. Fix it!

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