With restaurants in California such as Homestead and Alimento shaking up the restaurant tipping game, it’s about time to answer the age old question. 

How much am I supposed to tip?

In the USA, 10 to 20% is normal, although at most restaurants 10% is frowned upon.


Photo by Jaye Lind

Use the guidelines below to make sure you’re not caught in an awkward tipping situation ever again.

The Americas:

1. Canada:

Use the same system you’d use in the US. Good-great service 15-20%, terrible service 10%.

2. Mexico:

Restaurants will rarely add a tip in the bill itself, but similar to the US, 15-20% is customary.

3. Brazil:

Additional tips are not used often, unless service is absolutely amazing. Most places add tip to the bill already, so make sure you don’t accidentally tip twice!


4. France:

15% service charges are ALWAYS included in your bill, so don’t feel obligated to tip more. However if the service was great (aka your server was ridiculously attractive…Bonjurrrrr) feel free to leave another 5% (and your number).

5.  UK

Don’t fall for the ominous “service charge,” at the bottom of your bill. That charge usually goes to the business owner. Inside tip: you can ask for this fee to be removed or lowered. Make sure to add an additional 10-15% specifically for your waiter and don’t tip at pubs.

6. Italy:

Order as much pasta as you want! Italians often tip very little, less than 10% if they tip at all. So load up on delicious carbs and don’t worry about tipping.


7.  China: 

Tipping is very unusual here. In fact, some places might see it as really rude. Are you listening US?

8. Hong Kong:

10% is the norm at most places; although, some places may include tip in the bill. Round the bill up if the service is phenomenal.

9. Japan:

Like China, tipping is rare. Handing your waiter a cash tip directly is considered very rude. The waiters get a cut of the service charge so don’t feel bad.


10. South Africa:


Photo by Jaye Lind

Leave 10-15% at most places. Leaving more is perfectly accepted and welcomed.

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