Gratuity Etiquette: How Much to Tip and When

We’ve all been there – struggling with how much to tip and when it’s appropriate not to tip. The standard 15% seems to apply for most dining out experiences, but what about other services? Uber drivers, hair stylists, and the hotel concierge? The CGS Team is sharing some simple gratuity etiquette to follow the next time you find yourself in a position that warrants a tip.

But, first…

Before we share which situations warrant a tip and how much, it’s important to understand why tipping is a necessary part of the purchase process.

  • Tips are calculated in minimum wages for restaurant works. According to the National Restaurant Association, tips are legally considered wages, and restaurants (in most states) can apply tips received by workers to meet the restaurant’s obligation to pay minimum wages.
  • According to the Emily Post Institute, the 15-20% tip rate should be applied on the pre-tax amount, as opposed to the final bill amount.
  • When travelling international, research where it is and isn’t appropriate to tip. For example, in Mexico, Canada, and India, tips are expected. On the other hand, in Australia, Ireland and Brazil, tipping is not common.
What to tip and when

Tim Urban, from Wait But Why, a “procrastination website”, took the time to shed light on tipping standards by asking over 100 service workers in New York City to share their experiences. He questioned service workers of all fields, and his results are summarized in the chart below. If you are ever unsure about what to tip, when to tip, and who to tip, follow the guidelines below.

When it comes to tipping, where did you learn what was appropriate or not? Did you work in a service based profession that thrived on tips? Share your tipping experiences and opinions by leaving a comment below!

-The CGS Team

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