Tipping Guide

Artur S

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It was mentioned in this thread that in Germany tipping in restaurants is usually included in the bill being 10%. That's wrong. I live (partially because of long-term work abroad) for 30 years in Germany and when in the country, at least once a month eating out. And never had a bill which included tipping.
 

Artur S

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I wonder whether the African PHs / farm / outfit owners tip their mechanic, who takes care of their LCs also with 10 to 15% of the total amount of their invoice. And I bet they heavily rely on their vehicles, especially with situations in mind, when their lives depend on it (reaching the airstrip / camp after being gored by a buff, for example).

And I wonder whether they all tip the teachers of their kids in (boarding) school every year or at least at graduating with 10 to 15% of their annual or overall tuition fees, who definitely do a very important job by educating the next generation of our societies.

It's a double bladed sword and I guess a great many of them don't live up to the other side.

This whole american tipping culture has a fade taste of a brothel. They practice socialism in their sports leagues but readily accept symbolic wages in gastronomy.

I was utterly surprised during my extended trip to Japan that tips are absolutely frowned upon, in every single service industry. Proud people with a fair economy / society.
 

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This will always be interesting subject.
In my humble opinion, tipping culture is not common in western european countries.
I am under ipression that american clients are likely to tip more, europeans, less likely.
 

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I tend to agree with @JPmbogo , in Spain we do tip, in bars and restaurants, but generally a small amount, and totally at your discretion.

When I tip my PH in Africa, I feel uncomfortable, I do it because it is the system, I know he is getting about 100 USD a day, and needs the other 100 USD a day he is getting from his client to make ends meet, but I dislike the idea.

They should all get a decent salary from their outfitters, just include it in the daily rate.
 

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This whole american tipping culture has a fade taste of a brothel. They practice socialism in their sports leagues but readily accept symbolic wages in gastronomy.

Certainly, you have the right to your opinion. As for your brothel comparison, I will have to take your word for it... Also, not exactly sure how American sports leagues are practicing socialism in the way players are compensated??

Regardless, the American and Western hemispheric practice of tipping and leaving gratuities for those in the service industry is a cultural concept that was predicated on incentivizing the best customer service possible from the food & service industries where the customer service is very personalized. The idea behind the concept is that service will most assuredly be at its best when the amount of compensation received by the service worker is performance-based to be determined by the customer rather than guaranteed regardless of the level of service provided. These service workers accept this arrangement with their base compensation at 50% of the national minimum wage which is currently about $3.62 USD/hour.

All that being said, whether you agree with the concept or not isn't the point. It's a matter of respecting the customs and cultural practices of that particular country you are patronizing. "When in Rome...." If the practice is too distasteful for you personally, you have the choice of withholding your business, or not tipping which I am sure will endear you to the servers of said establishment should you return.

They should all get a decent salary from their outfitters, just include it in the daily rate.

Your point is taken, but I would remind again that it's a customary issue. The practice of tipping may not be a part of the culture in Europe or Asia, but I can assure you that "tip" is built into the overall cost of the services provided regardless. That "decent salary" that you reference is paid through higher prices for goods & services which are ultimately charged to the customer. The major difference with the American/Western custom is that you, the customer, don't get to directly decide on the level of compensation for the service provided in a "one price" system.

With specific regard to hunting outfitters & safari operators, I am certain that any outfitter would be happy to provide you with an "all-inclusive price" to any client who would prefer not to have the discretion on who, what, and how much to tip, or, to not tip at all for that matter. But, rest assured that the "all-inclusive price" will most assuredly be 10-20% higher all while relieving you of the power to reward the level of service you received according to your own discretion.
 
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Bwana'

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When you say:
"All that being said, whether you agree with the concept or not isn't the point. It's a matter of respecting the customs and cultural practices of that particular country you are patronizing. "When in Rome...." If the practice is too distasteful for you personally, you have the choice of withholding your business, or not tipping which I am sure will endear you to the servers of said establishment should you return."

Because tipping is not int he South African culture, we should respect that and not tip? And that when others come to the USA, they TIP becasue it is part of our culture?

Tipping is always that bizarre place within an overseas trip. Europe no tipping... South Africa touring, no tipping... I have many friends that have went on "Photo Safaris, and no tip... but South Africa safari hunt, tipping is a yes.

I honestly wish it were easier to figure out, and less pressure on the customer. There have been times I feel anxious, hunts have gone well but I only have "X" amount of money for tips, so I feel guilty or if it didn't go well I still feel obligated.

Just my half cent anyway...
 

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15 % is extremely generous, if you check the tipping guide here you will see that. I don’t like giving someone else a tip that’s intended for skinners, cook etc. I personally want to make sure they receive the intended amount I wanted them to have. I’ve heard some PH’s keep a good amount of tip money for themselves. Funny cause just yesterday I spoke to a well known booking agent here in Georgia about his recommendation on tipping for my up coming hunt in Sonora.

I have used a booking agent from Georgia MANY times, and he has a VERY stron opinion on tipping...
 

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I wonder whether the African PHs / farm / outfit owners tip their mechanic, who takes care of their LCs also with 10 to 15% of the total amount of their invoice. And I bet they heavily rely on their vehicles, especially with situations in mind, when their lives depend on it (reaching the airstrip / camp after being gored by a buff, for example).

And I wonder whether they all tip the teachers of their kids in (boarding) school every year or at least at graduating with 10 to 15% of their annual or overall tuition fees, who definitely do a very important job by educating the next generation of our societies.

It's a double bladed sword and I guess a great many of them don't live up to the other side.

This whole american tipping culture has a fade taste of a brothel. They practice socialism in their sports leagues but readily accept symbolic wages in gastronomy.

I was utterly surprised during my extended trip to Japan that tips are absolutely frowned upon, in every single service industry. Proud people with a fair economy / society.

Japan and Japanese are an extremely unique place and people. A culture that I highly respect, almost equal to American tribal culture people.

The Japanese people believe in doing more than their very best in all they do. It is their sense of honor and pride that is instilled into them. A tip although a sign of gratitude normally in other places and countries, can be considered an insult, simply because it is saying ["this person"] is better than the other workers, whereas ["this person"] sees themself as equal and undeserving of special consideration.

This is why it is important when traveling to any foreign country, especially US citizens, should research the culture and cultural habits of the people of the country(ies) they are Visiting, to avoid any "misunderstandings".
 

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I have used a booking agent from Georgia MANY times, and he has a VERY stron opinion on tipping...
Yes when I spoke With this well known booking agent here in Georgia his advice on tipping in Mexico was pretty much in line with what I had in mind.
 

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Because tipping is not int he South African culture, we should respect that and not tip? And that when others come to the USA, they TIP becasue it is part of our culture?

Tipping is always that bizarre place within an overseas trip. Europe no tipping... South Africa touring, no tipping... I have many friends that have went on "Photo Safaris, and no tip... but South Africa safari hunt, tipping is a yes.

You say tipping is not customary in Africa among the tour operators? Hmmmm..? I've toured extensively in several countries in southern Africa, and when I have inquired about tipping the guides, drivers etc.., the tour operators have always suggested that tipping was a welcome gesture and certainly appreciated. Additionally, any proposal of a tour/safari agreement that I have ever received from Africa have all stated "gratuities not included". So, are you saying this is industry practice in Africa does not apply to the native people and only tourists, or natives don't tip regardless?

Regardless, It doesn't matter to me. Whether it was customary or not, whenever I have had exceptional restaurant service, great bar service, or a hunting/fishing guide that went above and beyond whether it be in Africa, Ireland, Scotland, Spain or Canada for that matter, I have always left a little something extra and I have never had a waiter, bartender, driver, or guide refuse the tip and imply it was an insult. Quite the contrary actually. I have no desire to go to Japan so I guess I am good with never have to worry about insulting them. ;)
 

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I wonder whether the African PHs / farm / outfit owners tip their mechanic, who takes care of their LCs also with 10 to 15% of the total amount of their invoice. And I bet they heavily rely on their vehicles, especially with situations in mind, when their lives depend on it (reaching the airstrip / camp after being gored by a buff, for example).

And I wonder whether they all tip the teachers of their kids in (boarding) school every year or at least at graduating with 10 to 15% of their annual or overall tuition fees, who definitely do a very important job by educating the next generation of our societies.

It's a double bladed sword and I guess a great many of them don't live up to the other side.

This whole american tipping culture has a fade taste of a brothel. They practice socialism in their sports leagues but readily accept symbolic wages in gastronomy.

I was utterly surprised during my extended trip to Japan that tips are absolutely frowned upon, in every single service industry. Proud people with a fair economy / society.
Brothels and sports leagues.?!? You have those confused Americans all figured out I see.

I fortunately have no experience with the former and how a professional athlete earning millions in a competitive economic environment is a pawn of a socialist system takes a finer appreciation of Marxist ideology than most would claim.

But to the point others have made, it is indeed extremely important to understand every aspect of a culture in which one plans to visit for a time. Whether looking for an open restaurant in Madrid at 7PM, reaching for something with one's left hand in an Arab culture, eating with one's left hand in one's lap (doing God knows what :rolleyes:) almost anywhere outside the US, being unprepared for Asian concepts of personal space, trying to negotiate a European waiting line for anything anywhere, etc, etc, etc, it is critical that a visitor have an appreciation for local cultural norms. (For instance, I would suggest our European members not stiff our restaurant servers and bartenders. Or at least not go to the same restaurant twice :Finger:)

But before becoming too offended, it is worthwhile to remember that a lot of of professions do indeed "tip." It is simply called a "bonus." I suppose even some of our more outraged contributors to this thread may have benefitted from them? Virtually all are performance based. Indeed, as one becomes more senior in many businesses or industries, the "bonus" becomes the primary source of compensation and it is virtually always performance based. Though usually everyone gets something even in a bad year. I will admit that concept is probably somewhat obscure to the typical Marxist. But, I have yet to meet an employee whose dignity was so offended that he or she refused that annual stipend - but perhaps things are different in Middle Asia and Europe.

Do what you want to do. I told this story earlier in one of these tipping threads. But, I was standing around the breakfast table working on my last cup of coffee with the whole team before heading back to the airport. I asked the owner who the next party was. He said they were a pair of hunters from Denmark. I asked who would be the PH, and the other two smiled while the youngest and newest hung his head and raised his hand.

I would simply offer that generally usually most of the time, if one books a $10,000 hunt then a $1000 to $1500 tip (spread among everyone) is a good planning figure. A particularly expensive trophy fee might skew those numbers. Hunting dangerous game in a remote area tends to bring safari costs up (often dramatically) and the tip percentage of total cost down.

One other thing - I have dealt with dozens of tour guides on four different continents (to include parks in South Africa), and have yet to meet the first who wasn't grateful for a gratuity for a job well done.
 
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mark-hunter

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Unless it gets out of hand to affect performance and service.
When passing Suez canal with cargo ship, and Port Said (also known as "Marlboro Country") for example, average consumption of cigarrets given as gratuities to local operators, tug boats, pilots, agents goes to 20 cartons at least, and with cargo operation in local port before canal transit it can go up to this much as well. So, double.
If not given, anything can happen, from protests, to poor performance, service delayed, horn blasting on the tugs, etc

On the other hand, in another part of the World, American pilots, agents, tug masters wills not take, or not ask anything. Even if offered.

Botom line, all is good, untill it gets out of hand.
 

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I have followed all 39 pages of the posts on this thread. I posted on it a few times fairly early in the life of the thread. What I find most interesting overall is that this website is U.S. based and as one would expect most of the people posting are Americans, thus the comments and perspectives lean heavily to the U.S. point of view on tipping.

The U.S.. represents less than 5% of the world's population and the American view on tipping is pretty much restricted to the States. Almost all of the rest of the world does not subscribe to this tipping model, except in areas where it has been exported into niche markets, like guided hunts in South Africa and tourist areas heavily frequented by Americans. In my opinion, this is not one of America's better exports. Flame away if you must but please realise that it might be worthwhile at least considering the views held by the rest of the world.
 

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I have followed all 39 pages of the posts on this thread. I posted on it a few times fairly early in the life of the thread. What I find most interesting overall is that this website is U.S. based and as one would expect most of the people posting are Americans, thus the comments and perspectives lean heavily to the U.S. point of view on tipping.

The U.S.. represents less than 5% of the world's population and the American view on tipping is pretty much restricted to the States. Almost all of the rest of the world does not subscribe to this tipping model, except in areas where it has been exported into niche markets, like guided hunts in South Africa and tourist areas heavily frequented by Americans. In my opinion, this is not one of America's better exports. Flame away if you must but please realise that it might be worthwhile at least considering the views held by the rest of the world.
That is essentially correct. Since the Great Depression, Americans have indeed set the international behavioral norms with respect to rewarding service in international tourist-related activities. That is changing with the Chinese heading out in their swarms and herds, but I would hesitate to say it is a change for the better. Oh, and I suppose I should confess that I also tip when in Canada. Every guide on every hunt and every server in every restaurant and bar that I have encountered has always seemed to be very grateful. I think it is wonderful how they put up such a brave front when I think how privately embarrassing it must be for them. But, like Covid, I suppose I'll keep doing it and spreading the contagion northward. o_O

With respect to a hunt in Africa, or even a visit to the States, I think you should stand on whatever Principle makes you feel good - regardless how hard those people may work to insure the success of your trip.
 

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That is essentially correct. Since the Great Depression, Americans have indeed set the international behavioral norms with respect to rewarding service in international tourist-related activities. That is changing with the Chinese heading out in their swarms and herds, but I would hesitate to say it is a change for the better. Oh, and I suppose I should confess that I also tip when in Canada. Every guide on every hunt and every server in every restaurant and bar that I have encountered has always seemed to be very grateful. I think it is wonderful how they put up such a brave front when I think how privately embarrassing it must be for them. But, like Covid, I suppose I'll keep doing it and spreading the contagion northward. o_O

With respect to a hunt in Africa, or even a visit to the States, I think you should stand on whatever Principle makes you feel good - regardless how hard those people may work to insure the success of your trip.
Could a response be any more quintessentially American? I do actually tip when I am in the States becasue from what I understand, at least in the more southern states, it is quite common for a server to earn betweem $1.50 and $5. an hour. Without the tips they would starve to death. In Alberta, the minimum wage for any restaurant worker is $15 an hour, many make more than that. They will happily accept tips but I see a big difference between a server who makes $30- $40,000 a year and someone who makes $8,000 a year. When you export the tipping culture you also export the belief that it is okay to underpay staff and expect the client to make up the difference. The fact that you don't either know, or fail to acknowledge the difference in servers base pay is completely germane to the point I was making above.
 
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To demonstrate one of the absurdities of tipping (albeit not on a guided hunt), if one orders a $100 bottle of wine in a restaurant, the tip by current standards in the States would be 15-20 percent or $15-20 (not including the price of the meal). On the other hand, if it's $20 bottle, then the tip is $3-4. I doubt if the wait staff did anything extra with the more expensive bottle. My opinion remains that if I book a guided hunt for X amount, then that's the price and no more. If a 10% gratuity is assumed, then simply charge more. In addition, it should be up to the PH, or whoever is running the hunt, to provide the staff. I feel the same in restaurants regarding servers. Again, anyone out there tip their auto mechanic, plumber, or heart surgeon???
 

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That is a fine and noble attitude to have until you have a job where such a gratuity is an important part of your income. At that point you become merely sanctimonious. I would suggest it is important to understand the culture in which you are enjoying your experience (meal, hunt, fishing trip, whatever) before assuming too much about debasing you’re fellow human beings.

You miss the point - no one should have to rely on "gratuities" for their livelihood.
 

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Spent 25 years as a auto mechanic working on a shop rate commision, no tips, never expected any.
 

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Could a response be any more quintessentially American? I do actually tip when I am in the States becasue from what I understand, at least in the more southern states, it is quite common for a server to earn betweem $1.50 and $5. and hour. Without the tips they would starve to death. In Alberta, the miinimum wage for any restaurant worker is $15 an hour, many make more than that. They will happily accpet tips but I see a big difference between a server who makes $30- $40,000 a year and someone who makes $8,000 a year. The fact that you don't either know, or fail to acknowledge the difference is completely germain to the point I was making above.
Exactly! I am proudly a "quintessential" American. And doing everything I can personally to subvert the service industry worldwide.

You miss the point - no one should have to rely on "gratuities" for their livelihood.

I don't at all. But I think you might. Our service industry compensation model (and it is true in a lot of other places besides here and the hunting industry - been on a cruise or to a resort lately?) is based on gratuities. To my mind, that creates incentives on both sides of the bill. It is indeed different than many other cultures for that particular service set, but that is our culture and it works.

To demonstrate one of the absurdities of tipping (albeit not on a guided hunt), if one orders a $100 bottle of wine in a restaurant, the tip by current standards in the States would be 15-20 percent or $15-20 (not including the price of the meal). On the other hand, if it's $20 bottle, then the tip is $3-4. I doubt if the wait staff did anything extra with the more expensive bottle. My opinion remains that if I book a guided hunt for X amount, then that's the price and no more. If a 10% gratuity is assumed, then simply charge more. In addition, it should be up to the PH, or whoever is running the hunt, to provide the staff. I feel the same in restaurants regarding servers. Again, anyone out there tip their auto mechanic, plumber, or heart surgeon???
And I assume you chose to ignore my comparison of a "tip" to an annual bonus - particularly a performance bonus - which all are these days. It is essentially the same thing. A reward for personal performance; one for individual service, and the other for service to the enterprise - one paid at the specific time of the service and the other annually. I have no idea if you ever worked for a major corporation or enterprise, but I assume your sensibilities would not be so finally tuned as to turn one down?
 

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Could a response be any more quintessentially American?

LMFAO...! Here's another "quintessentially American" response for you... Interesting that you stated that the USA only makes up 5% of the world population.. The more relevant point to this topic is that the USA represents 25% of the global economy, with China coming in at a distant second at 15%, then Japan in 3rd at a much more distant 6%. Economic power and prevalence has much more influence on economic tendencies than populations.

To demonstrate one of the absurdities of tipping (albeit not on a guided hunt), if one orders a $100 bottle of wine in a restaurant, the tip by current standards in the States would be 15-20 percent or $15-20 (not including the price of the meal). On the other hand, if it's $20 bottle, then the tip is $3-4. I doubt if the wait staff did anything extra with the more expensive bottle.

Firstly, if you are affluent enough to patronize an establishment selling $100 bottles of wine with your dinner, leaving a 15-20% tip should not be an issue. If it is, you are at the wrong restaurant. Secondly, you are arguing with convoluted logic making the wine cost comparisons. A restaurant that has $100 bottles of wine also likely have $100 steaks, $20-30 a la carte dishes, and several members of the wait staff at your disposal. They will also likely have higher-end furnishings & amenities, and maybe a lounge piano player all which contribute the the overall cost of the "dining experience" that you are paying for. If you simply want a meal without a dining experience, go to the butcher shop and buy a steak for $10 and tip nobody..

My opinion remains that if I book a guided hunt for X amount, then that's the price and no more. If a 10% gratuity is assumed, then simply charge more.

They do charge more. As I stated earlier in this thread, you are paying for the the goods and services one way or the other. The big difference is that with the "one price model", you are forfeiting your control as a client/customer in your ability to encourage the best service possible by having the discretion of who, how much to tip, or if at all.

I feel the same in restaurants regarding servers. Again, anyone out there tip their auto mechanic, plumber, or heart surgeon???

You are making my point for me with this argument. This only makes sense assuming that all mechanics, plumbers, and heart surgeons provide the exact same level of service at the exact same prices which they certainly do not. You are welcome to visit the cardiac surgeon that makes $150,000 per year. I will go to the one who makes $1.5 million. (another benefit of private health insurance over single-payer government provided care by the way...) And, I actually do tip my mechanic, plumber, and electrician for doing a fine job because I also want them to come over on short notice or slip my truck in when they have 5 vehicles already ahead of me...

You miss the point - no one should have to rely on "gratuities" for their livelihood.

In a perfect world maybe, but that is simply not reality.. When everyone is paid the same regardless of the quality of their work, that's not what I would call a fair system. The better term for that is called communism. You are welcome to keep your "one-price regardless" ideology, and I will keep my privilege to reward on a merit-based system as quintessentially American as it may be..
 
 

 

 

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