Practical Information

Tips in America | How much do you actually give?

In the US, giving tips is a theme that tourists sometimes run into. Why are tips so important and how much do we need to tip? This does not have to be difficult if you know what is generally expected with tips in America


Giving tips in America, how much do you actually give? Why is America so focused on giving tips? The wait staff of American restaurants hardly receives a salary for their job. In many cases, providing health insurance and other matters is the only thing the employer does. So this industry really needs tips that customers give to make ends meet.

The opinions about the amount and in which cases a tip is given are very different. Some even think that you should also tip in case of a bad treatment. The below mentioned is of course not the wise truth, but assume that it is in any case quite normal.

For an excellent service usually 15 to 20 percent tip is given, for a moderate service 10 percent and in bad to very bad service 5 percent or nothing at all. Some therefore think that in case of bad treatment you also have to give a tip. Nothing could be further from the truth, in America it is quite normal that service is accompanied by getting tips and non-delivery service is accompanied by getting zero on the bill.

Taxi drivers, tour guides and hotel clerks  you will give a tip of 1 dollar or more, depending on the service offered.

Please note, in some restaurants the service is included (service – or gratuity – included). Then extra tip is not necessary. This is usually in groups of eight people or more. Many restaurants, with large groups, already put the gratuity on the bill, you do not have to give an extra tip.

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