Tipping in Europe

Tipping rules in Europe are different from North America, we have compiled this short list as a reference for anyone else going to Europe in the next few months.

Restaurant Tipping

  • In Austria, the tip is included in the final bill, but you can give a little extra if the service was friendly or went above your expectations.
  • In Czech Republic, the major cities expect higher tips, but 10-15% is still fine.  Be wary, although it is improving, at some restaurants the wait staff will charge a fake service fee in order to collect more from customers.  If you don’t see the service fee listed on the menu, challenge the fee if you spot it on your bill.
  • In France, service is also included in the bill (called service compris).  If you weren’t satisfied with the service, do not leave anything extra.  If you were happy, leave around 10%, if you were ecstatic, leave 15%.
  • In Holland, tipping is not customary as it is in the United States.  In this country, tipping it typically only expected if you received extra special service or received something extra.
  • Italy treats their wait staff differently than in the United States in that the salaries are relatively high and the tip is something extra given for exceptional service.  It is entirely up to the guest as to whether they tip or not and leaving it on the table is standard.  If paying by credit card, Italians prefer the tip in cash, not added to the credit card bill.
  • Switzerland also pays restaurant staff well and tipping is optional.  Consider giving a small tip for better service to show you appreciate the extra effort, but no tip is required for standard service.

Haircuts

  • Many people in the United States tip their hairstylist in addition to paying the fee.  In Italy and Holland, tipping is not expected at the salon.  In Austria, it’s up to the patron, but typically, tips will be left for the stylist and shampooer.  In Ireland, €2 or €3 is left for the person who washes your hair, but give it directly to the person who served you or the cashier might not give them the money!  In Norway, some people will add a small tip and some don’t tip at all.  You won’t be looked down on if you don’t tip.

Taxis

  • In Austria, round up or give even more for a longer drive or if there are many passengers.
  • In England, 10% is plenty for a taxi ride.
  • The rule of thumb in France is to round up to the nearest Euro and give more if the driver has been particularly helpful to you.
  • Tipping taxi drivers in Italy isn’t expected, however, feel free to give a couple of Euros if they have helped you out.

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