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While dining out in the United States, a 15 per cent tip to your server at the end of your meal is customary and polite.But while visiting abroad, the last thing you want is to signal you’re a tourist and tip wrong at a spa, restaurant or other place of service.
Here’s a guide to tipping etiquette broken down by region:
THE MIDDLE EAST
In the Middle East, those who provide services tend to reach out for a tip more often, but its customary to tip in smaller amounts, according to Conde Nast traveller.
Dubai: There’s a 10 per cent service charge to bills at hotels, restaurants, and bars. Normally the tip is divided among everyone, but sometimes goes directly to those who helped you. You can add a couple dirhams (equal to about a quarter) to your direct server if you are feeling generous.
Egypt: A 5 to 10 per cent should be added on top of the 5 to 10 per cent tip that is already built into the bill. Dollars are often preferred to local currency, according to Mint.com.
Israel: At restaurants the tip is generally included in the bill, but it’s customary to add a few shekels to the bill. A shekel or two for the concierge at hotel if he goes out of his way. Six shekels per bag for porters and about four shekels per day for housekeepers.
Argentina: Rounding up and adding a tip of 10 per cent at restaurants is appropriate. Dollars are not recommended. Conde Nast traveller recommends keeping a lot of change in your pocket because restaurants and shops will often refuse to break bills.
Brazil: There’s no need to tip in restaurants, it’s included with a 10 per cent fee. No additional tips are expected in most situations.
Canada: In restaurants, gratuity is not included, so including the normal 15 to 20 per cent is customary. If hotel staff goes out of their way, a $10 to $20 tip is customary. U.S. paper money is fine, but not coins.
Mexico: 10 to 15 per cent tip in cash at restaurants is the preferred method of tipping. Try to tip gas station attendants five pesos. Dollars are accepted, but pesos are preferred because the country is sensitive to the fact that it’s “not an extension of the United States,” according to Conde Nast traveller.
Tips should never be left on a credit card anywhere in Europe, or your server might not necessarily get it, according to Conde Nast Travler.
France: If you see “service compris” on your bill that means no tip required. Mint.com suggests only tipping services when the person does an exceptional job.
Italy: Tipping no more than 10 per cent is customary. Interestingly enough, tipping gondoliers and vaporettos is not customary.
Spain: Tip seven to 13 per cent at restaurants. If the service is bad, you can get up and leave and no one will protest.
United Kingdom: If a service charge is not included, tips are expected. tipping in a pub is not customary. Tips range from about 10 to 15 per cent at restaurants.
India: In restaurants, 15 per cent is polite. At hotels, 250 rupees for the housekeeper who is low paid. Some people will ask for tips for no apparent reason. Dollars are accepted, but not preferred.
Countries such as China or Japan, leaving no tip for any service is the standard. But a ‘buck a bag,’ is customary for a bellhop, according to Conde Nast traveller.
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