It’s bad enough we’re not sure how to tip in this country, but when we travel as Americans overseas, we definitely hand out too much money in gratuities, so much so that the local people think we’re both crazy and stupid. Lynn Staneff of Magellan’s Travel Supply Company says, “The most glaring way to show you’re an American – besides your accent – is to over tip. In some countries, particularly Asia, it isn’t even considered polite to tip. When you do it in these places, you’re saying that the person you’re tipping isn’t hospitable enough to provide service without a bribe.”

In Japan the servers view tipping as an insult. In many other countries, actually handing a tip to a waiter is considered insulting, and that’s why small trays are left on the tables.

Do homework and check guidebooks in the region where you’re traveling to look for the local custom. Or, ask the concierge at your hotel. You just may find that the tip is already included in the bill as many European restaurants and hotels do, or you may be told that there’s no tipping at all, such as in Tahiti, Fiji, Thailand, Vietnam, and other parts of the South Pacific.

Bottom line, 18% is not the rule of thumb throughout the rest of the world.

Posted by The Dining Duo | 5:44 PM | , | 0 comments »

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