From China to Denmark, countries around the world have different ways to show appreciation. Here's five spots with their own distinctive tipping traits, plus advice on how much to tip.
In Canada, we have a well-understood tipping culture. However, when traveling abroad, tipping customs can vary greatly from region to region. For example, in France, the term "service compris" indicates that the gratuity is already included in the bill. In contrast, some places in East Asia take pride in not having a tipping tradition at all.
To showcase the diversity of tipping cultures, here are some places with unique tipping traits.
In Japan, the tipping culture is very different compared to many other countries. Tipping is generally not practiced or expected in most situations. In fact, it can even be considered rude or offensive to tip in Japan.
The Japanese have a strong focus on providing excellent service as a matter of pride and professionalism, without the need for additional monetary incentives. Instead of tipping, appreciation is commonly shown through compliments (especially in Japanese), polite behavior, and respectful gestures such as bowing.
One exception to this general rule is in some high-end ryokans (traditional Japanese inns) or exclusive establishments that cater to international visitors. However, the tip must be enclosed in a decorated envelope instead of handing it directly to the person.
In Egypt, tipping is a common practice and is expected in many service-oriented situations. It is considered a way to show appreciation for good service. Tipping, known as "baksheesh" in Arabic, is prevalent in various sectors, including hospitality, tourism, transportation, and dining.
It is customary to tip hotel staff, such as bellhops, housekeeping, and concierge, as well as tour guides and drivers. In restaurants, a service charge may already be included in the bill, but it is common to leave an additional tip for the servers.
The amount of the tip can vary depending on the level of service and the individual's discretion. It is generally recommended to give around 10-15% of the total bill or a small amount of Egyptian pounds for smaller services. However, it's important to note that tipping is not mandatory, and you should only tip if you are satisfied with the service provided.
It's also a good idea to carry small change or lower denomination bills to make tipping easier and more convenient.
In Denmark, tipping is not as common or expected as it is in some other countries. The Danish service industry typically pays its employees fair wages, which means that tipping is not necessary to supplement their income.
In restaurants, a service charge is often included in the bill, particularly for larger groups or in more upscale establishments. If a service charge is not included, it is still not expected to leave a tip. However, it is becoming more common for people to round up the bill or leave a small amount as a gesture of appreciation for good service. This is usually done by leaving the extra change or rounding up to the nearest whole number.
Similarly, in hotels, taxis, or other service-related industries, tipping is not expected but can be done as a way to show appreciation for exceptional service. Again, rounding up the bill or leaving a small amount of extra change is generally sufficient.
It's worth noting that while tipping is not expected in Denmark, it is not seen as rude or offensive if you choose to leave a tip. However, it is not customary or obligatory, and most Danes do not tip in their daily lives.
Tipping is customary and expected in Mexico, as it is an important part of the service culture. Service industry workers in Mexico often rely on tips as a significant portion of their income, as wages may be relatively low.
In restaurants, a service charge is not typically included in the bill. It is customary to leave a tip for the waitstaff, usually around 10-15% of the total bill. Some restaurants may include a suggested tip amount on the bill, but it is still at your discretion to adjust the tip accordingly based on the quality of service.
For other services such as hotel staff, taxi drivers, tour guides, and maids, tipping is also expected. For example, you can tip hotel staff a few dollars per day, taxi drivers around 10% of the fare, and tour guides a similar percentage of the tour cost.
It's important to have small bills or change on hand to make tipping easier and more convenient, and your server will appreciate it if you tip in Mexican Pesos, as there is a charge for them to exchange money. Additionally, be sure to check if a service charge is already included in bills or fees before deciding on the tip amount.
Tipping in Italy is not as common or expected as it is in some other countries. However, it is still appreciated for good service. In restaurants, a service charge is sometimes included in the bill, especially for larger groups. If a service charge is not included, it is customary to tip around 5-10% of the total bill.
For other services like hotel staff, taxi drivers, or tour guides, tipping is not obligatory but can be done as a gesture of appreciation. Rounding up the bill or leaving a small amount is usually sufficient.
It's important to note that tipping customs may vary in different regions of Italy, so it's always a good idea to ask locals or refer to any guidelines provided by your hotel or tour operator for specific recommendations.