How To: Tip in Europe

How To: Tip in Europe

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Alas, travelers can catch a break from that painful pound and euro! In Europe tipping is far more modest and you do NOT tip 15-20% as you would in the States.

Here’s a quick little guide to tipping in Western Europe and some of my favorite wanderlust-inducing pictures..because, why not?

Austria

Restaurants | tips are usually included in the bill however it’s customary to add 10%

Cabs | 10% is perfect

Bars | round up to the nearest euro

Hallstatt-16_Hallstatt

Czech Republic

Restaurants | tips are usually included in the bill however if you don’t see it add 5%

Cabs | round up to the nearest euro

Bars | 10% is appropriate

HowTo_TipInEurope-2

France

Restaurants | by law it’s always included in the bill however adding 0-5% on top of the bill for good service is normal. FYI – The words “service compris” means no tip is required but locals still do.

Cabs | round up to the nearest euro

Bars | round up to the nearest euro

HowTo_TipInEurope-11

Germany

Restaurants | Give server tip at the time of payment, not left on the table afterwards. 5-15% is normal, no tip indicates poor service.

Cabs | round up to the nearest euro (more for longer rides) ex. total is 14.20 euro, handover 15 euro and you’re all set.

Bars | a euro per beer is the norm

Autumn_Germany-44_Germany.jpg

Greece

Restaurants | round up to the nearest euro plus a little on top, ex. 22E bill, make it 25E

Cabs | nope! but if you round up to the nearest euro they’ll be delighted!

Bars | nope

santorini-1Credit: Team Starnes

Iceland

Restaurants | nope! if you leave 5% then you’re a real winner

Cabs | nope

Bars | nope

Coasteering_-1

Italy

Restaurants | No tip is necessary but for extraordinary service 10% is great.

Cabs | 1-2E is all!

Bars | 1-2E

Manarola-33_Italy1

The Netherlands

*The Dutch government requires that tips be included in all published prices.

Restaurants | 10% is perfect

Cabs | nope!

Bars | nope!

HowTo_TipInEurope-6

Portugal

Restaurants | 10% is customary

Cabs | round up to the nearest 5 euro ex. total fair is 7E, handover 10E

Bars | 1-2E

Nerja-22

 Spain

Restaurants | leave small change or 10% in higher-end restaurants (by the way, preference for tip in cash not on credit card)

Cabs | round up to the nearest euro

Bars | nope

HowTo_TipInEurope-3

Switzerland

Restaurants | Swiss law requires that tips are included in the published prices however adding up to 15% at high-end places is appropriate

Cabs | round up to the nearest euro

Bars | round up to the nearest euro

Bern_Austria_0104.jpg

 United Kingdom

Restaurants | tips are usually included in the bill however if you don’t see it add 10%

Cabs | round up to the nearest euro

Bars | nope!

Killarney-44

**I’ve collected this information through my personal travels, various website and conversations with locals. If you think I’ve been misinformed about any of these then let me know! 🙂

  • This is such a good list! Thank you for sharing it — I’m pinning it so I can use it later. We plan on some European travel soon, and I’m so glad to have this advice. THANK YOUUUU!

    • Ah (blush!) – you’re so very welcome!! Glad you enjoyed the post! 😀

      When you get around to planning that Euro-trip, let me know! I’d be happy to share my two cents! 🙂

  • Such a helpful article, thank you! I recently returned from assignment in London and Paris and I always run into these issues of when to tip/how much to tip. In New York tipping is a standard 20% but in Europe I know it varies. Thank you for putting this together!

    http://thepinthemapproject.com/

    • Absolutely Nikki! Glad you enjoyed it! Send NY my love, Brooklyn too, such a great city!

  • Feyi A

    Lovely!! xx

    Marveling-Mind☀

  • Great list!!! Even I get confused at times about everything. See you in a few days xo

  • Loved this and I think you’re spot on! xx

    • Woohoo! Thanks dear!

  • This is SO helpful!

    • Yay, excellent! Thanks dear!

  • What a handy guide! I am always finding myself google searching while in a restaurant when first arriving in a new country!

    • Absolutely! Glad you found it helpful! 😀

      • Another reader asked about tipping in Croatia – have any suggestions?

  • Great article-pinning

    • Wonderful! Hugs, Jana!

  • This is a great tool! Any tips on Croatia?

    • Unfortunately not, if I find anything out I’ll let you know! 🙂

    • In Croatia people do tip. Like you leave “something”. Not too much, not too little. Like the usual thing in EU 😉

  • I don’t know about any other places in the UK – but I’ve been cabbing around Edinburgh quite a lot since moving here and usually just rounding up is okay 🙂

    • Good to know – I was a bit confused by the recommendations I found online. I’ll update the post! 🙂

  • as a former bartender and waitress, i really dislike the fact that lots of people in the netherlands don’t tip 😉 but have to say, that’s mostly in the south. i never heard of it being included in prices, and i think lots of people still tip 10%. 🙂
    xo, cheyenne

    • Thanks for the feedback cheyenne! I’ll update the post to recommend 10%!

  • emilygrapes

    This is so so helpful! In Japan, you never tip anyone, ever! And the times you do, they get so confused and a little insulted because its not their job to work for tips, but instead to do their job as best they can regardless. We’ve flubbed and given (forced) tips before and then felt horrible after once we saw their expression of disgust. haha Its hard to break, but then its so wonderful not having the pressure of tipping.

    • Oh my, what a small but very important cultural difference. As a former Denny’s then O’Charley’s waitress (I’ve logged serious hours rolling silverware), stiffing the waitress feels like a moral sin. It’s interesting that even if you innocently give them money there’s a negative result.. or maybe that’s just proving that I’m a greedy person and will never turn down money? Ha. Thanks for sharing and good luck over there! 🙂

  • this is great info that I will [hopefully] someday get to use! in Taiwan you don’t tip – we’ve tried on a few occasions when the service was really great, and they always chase you down to hand the money back. some “higher-end” places will include a service charge around 10% but you’re never expected to tip above that.

    • Isn’t it wild what a night and day difference there is with the service industry? I’ve told some of my German friends that in my Denny’s days (yes, I waitressed at Denny’s!) I made $2.16 an hour. They are flabbergasted! I presume that wait staff in Taiwan make steady incomes without relying on tips then? I wonder if that increases the cost of meals or reduces the profit margins for the restaurants?

  • Really useful post! In Japan there it is not customary to tip and if you do, they see it as an insult.

    http://www.annehoang.com.au/photoblog

    • Isn’t it interesting how different the service industry is around the world? I’m not sure I’d every not feel guilty about not tipping, perhaps because I’m a former waitress myself. Good to know though!

  • Great guide! This is so helpful to have all in one place. 🙂

    • Wonderful! Glad you enjoyed it Bailey! 🙂

  • Oui In France

    Hi there, awesome pics and great guide! I live in France and I always feel like I’m stiffing the waiter when I leave nothing. I’d say that in nicer restaurants if the food and service were great, you can leave 5% or a little more like you said but the norm is 0%. It’s not considered being a cheapskate if the bill is 40 and you leave 40. It always feels so wrong though!

    • Thanks for letting me know! I’ve updated the post to read “0-5% is normal” 🙂 I’m also a former waitress and feel as though I’m committing a moral sin when I don’t tip!

  • Thanks for this guide! I will definitely keep this in mind for future travels, whenever I make it to Europe! 🙂 Here in Peru, we often tip 10% at restaurants (even little hole-in-the-wall, family owned places) and they are always so thankful, but never tip taxi drivers… they overcharge us anyway since I’m a Gringa! haha

    • Ha! Seriously? That’s another story all in itself. I can’t believe they profile you and make you pay more. All part of the experience, right? 😀

  • This is a fantastic guide, Margo! Thank you!

    • Absolutely Annie! Glad you found the post helpful! 🙂

  • Hi, Nice idea but I also live in France and why nope for the bars? People do tip, at least something. Hope it helps. Kindly 🙂

    • Thanks dear! I’ll update the post to indicate ’round up to the nearest euro’ does that sound right?

      • Yes, depends always on the amount but people do leave something. For a coffee just some coins (less than a Euro), for a meal it can be more. But people do leave something on the table.

  • This is a handy guide, one I need to tuck into my metaphorical back pocket – we’re always unsure!

    • Oh boy, I have that same metaphorical back pocket too! “Oh I need this for when I visit Thailand” kind of thing! 😀

  • In CZ 10% is considered *quite* generous, for outstanding service. But some tip is appreciated, even only 5%, that’s totally acceptable. (Most of the times, unless you are at a touristy place in Prague for example, tip is not included in the bill) The CZ doesn’t have a tipping culture, as weird as it seems to us North Americans!
    As for Austria, I’ve rarely encountered a situation where tip was included, so usually 10% (maximum) for great service, even where tax and a service charge are already included.

    • Hi Cynthia, you’re the best – I’ve updated the post the post to include all of your feedback about restaurants in CZ and Austria. I appreciate the clarification! 🙂

      Happy Holidays!

      • Happy I could contribute. Last night I tipped 10% at a restaurant here and the waiter’s eyes got really wide, haha. Tipping can be such a headache while traveling as each country seems to have their own customs, so I really appreciate this guide 🙂 Happy holidays to you as well!

  • Great compilation! Very useful post…. However, I lived in the Netherlands for 8 months and tipping isn’t expected, or done often, AT ALL. I once tipped in a restaurant and it was returned to me haha. So I would say there is no tipping in restaurants, but you can leave something if you want to.

    Also, my boyfriend is British and we just came back from a holiday there, and tipping is not required there either. A few pounds, maybe, but it isn’t customary. It is definitely more acceptable than in the Netherlands though.

  • This is such a great guide!! Im never really sure haha but so true about Germany, you can’t leave it on the table (like you might in Australia or USA) we learnt this the hard way when we left it and someone else took it hahaha

  • Bravo to you for creating this list! THIS is why your blog is at the top of our bookmarks. For the longest time, we’ve been trying to figure out this whole tipping game in Europe – now we have it all in an easy-format here. Thank youuuu!

  • I love this post! Thank YOU!

  • Where is Turkey? I dont see 🙁