Guide To Tipping On Holiday

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To tip or not to tip? It’s a common question that can have holidaymakers in a bit of a frazzle when visiting a new destination - it’s no surprise really, with tipping culture varying dramatically all around the world. Did you know in Japan it’s considered rude to leave a tip? Or, that in Singapore, tipping is not allowed as noted by the government? Even for the most seasoned jet setter, it’s easy to see why social customs for tipping can begin to get a little confusing when each country has its own guidelines on gratuity etiquette. The key here is to do a little research before you go, so if you’re already wondering what is customary for your next getaway, fear not as we’ve got you covered with our simple guide to tipping on holiday.


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Let’s start with the essentials - who do you actually tip on holiday? From your waitress to your taxi driver or the concierge, here’s the lowdown on who to tip…

Waiting staff




Hotel room cleaner

Taxi driver

Tour guide

Beauty services staff

Remember, in some countries, tipping may not be expected but is still appreciated, so if you have received great service, in most countries a small tip will be gratefully received!


Next up, how much do you leave as a tip? This is where it can get a little confusing as it not only varies from country to country, but there are different customs for waitresses, taxi drivers and so on. If you leave too little, your tip may be insulting and equally, if you leave too much, this may cause offence too. Here’s a guide to tipping in some of the most popular Teletext Holidays destinations: 


Arch of Triumph, one of the most famous monuments in Paris, France.

Whether you’re booking a city break in the capital of Paris or visiting the beautiful French coast or countryside, you’ll find by law, restaurants, bars and cafes will include a 15% service charge on your bill. Tipping for service staff is a welcome gesture, so consider leaving a few Euros to recognise their service.

Restaurants: Service charges included in the bill

Taxis: 10% on top of your fare

Services: €2-10 

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Plaza De Espana In Seville, Andalusia, Spain

From long hot sunny summer breaks to charming city escapes in Barcelona or Madrid, in Spain, the locals rarely tip. Although gratuity here is pretty much discretionary, it’s still very much appreciated so carry around small change with you and leave as you see fit.

Restaurants: 10%-12.5%

Taxis: Round up your fare

Services: €1 per night/per bag

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Pisa Cathedral and the Leaning Tower, Italy

Leaving tips in Italy really does vary all over with many places including a service charge within the bill so it’s important to check wherever you go. If this hasn’t been added, then the below serves as a good practice.

Restaurants: 10%

Taxis: Not expected, round up to nearest €10

Services: €2-10 

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Greek fishing village in Greece with restaurant chairs

Over in Greece, both on the mainland and on popular islands like Santorini and Mykonos, tipping isn’t compulsory; it is however often expected and cash is always preferred over credit card, so make sure you have some smaller notes or coins to hand.

Restaurants: 5%-10%

Taxis: Not expected

Services: €1 euro per night/per bag

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Female tourist in front of the famous hotel Atlantis, Dubai

If you’re jetting off to Dubai, expect exceptional service wherever you visit. Despite having a reputation for going above and beyond for guests and tourists, there aren’t actually any set rules on how to tip, so take the below as general advice if you’re happy with your service.

Restaurants: Service charge generally included

Taxis: Round up your fare

Services: AED 5-10

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Tourists in elephant in Ayutthaya, Thailand

Tipping is becoming more customary in Thailand, however it is carried out more by tourists than the local Thai people and is still varied all over. The Land of Smiles is renowned for its incredible street food and whilst you may feel inclined to leave a tip, it is not customary unlike eating at a restaurant.

Restaurants: 10%

Taxis: Round up your fare

Services: 20-50 bahts

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Aerial view of Las Vegas, Nevada, USA

Americans have a big reputation for tipping big - and across the USA, especially in cities like New York and Las Vegas, tipping is expected and if you choose not to leave a tip, you’ll most definitely be considered rude, so it’s worth making sure you factor money for tips when you purchase your currency.

Restaurants: 15%-20%

Taxis: 10-15%

Services: $2-$10 dollars

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Cancun coast with sun, Mexico

In Mexico, tipping is customary and always gratefully received by the locals who are often paid very little. With a low minimum wage, tourist tips (or a propina as it is called over there) can really make a difference and boost their income. 

Restaurants: 10%

Taxis: Not expected

Services: $2-$10 dollars

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The latest destination guides like those by Lonely Planet will have included detailed tipping etiquette 

Avoid tipping twice and always check to see if a service charge has already been added on to your bill 

Carry small change and notes to make the tipping process quick and easy 

If you’re staying at an all-inclusive resort, tipping is generally not expected

For cruises, most brochures will have guidelines to gratuity so check those before you book

It’s common sense but if you’re unsure, never ask the service staff if you should leave a tip

If you’re working out how much to tip, calculate this before tax


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