Traveler’s Guide to Tipping Practices

September 17, 2013 9:13 pm0 commentsViews: 29

By: Guest Author

Traveler's Guide to Tipping Practices

You give tips when you ordinarily dine in your hometown. But when you travel do you still need to do it? You are aware of the tipping trends back at home like the back of your hand. But are the tipping practices in other places similar to what is it like back home? Here are some of the tipping expectations in some places so that you would not be leaving the restaurant red in the face for not giving tips correctly.

United Kingdom

The customary tip in United Kingdom restaurants is about 10 to 15 percent unless you see a service charge on the bill. The rules in UK tipping are closely similar to US tipping customs but it is a bit lower. The usual service charge in UK restaurants is pegged at 12 percent. The usual tipping rate in a pub or a bar is a pound or two that is often charged to your bill. For taxis it is customary to add 10 percent of the fare. Tour guides are expected to get a few pounds after a great tour which also includes porters.


In France, tipping as known in the New World (that is America) is not that important or as the French would say it is not ncessaire. Although gratuities in some Western European countries are always accepted, who wouldn’t? French law allows the collection of 15 percent service charge which is already included in the menu prices. So it should not be much of fuzz for an American tourist to calculate how much tip he/she would provide because it may be already included in the meal price. And that is how you say thank you for the great customer service in France.

Eastern Europe

Over tipping is extremely common in the former countries that used to belong on the other side of the Iron Curtain or those used to be aligned with the former Soviet Union. Giving gratuities are extremely welcomed considering the low wages service crews and waiters receive in these countries. Locals generally don’t leave tips so any amount is greatly appreciated. The rule of thumb is about 10 percent tip and about five percent for taxis. You are expected to hand the tip directly to the server.



In China, tips are discouraged, whew what a relief! While no one will send you to jail for giving a 10 percent tip in upscale Chinese restaurants but if you don’t want to offend the locals just don’t.

Southeast Asia and Japan

Some Southeast Asian countries like Thailand and Singapore sees tips as downgrading and implies bad taste. This is also true in Japan which is the last place you should be throwing your money around. So if you happen to dine in these places remember to keep the tips to yourself.

Westernized countries generally would accept gratuities while it may be seen as an insult in Asian countries. Take a look at the bill if there is a service charge to prevent duplication. Do your research on the particular country about their tipping traditions and you will never go wrong.

Tipping practices are just few of the many things that you should have knowledge of especially if you are a frequent traveler. Not knowing enough about these practices may make you end up experiencing much anxiety while hopping from place to another. Please visit Calm Clinic prweb site for more helpful information about anxiety-free travel.

Photo Credit:
Flickr – Creative Commons
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