Tipping in Germany – Is it Customary to Tip in Germany?

Tipping in Germany

Tipping etiquette varies massively around the world, and Germany is no exception, and as a country with its own unique customs and practices, understanding how tipping works in Germany is essential before you travel. At Crown Currency Exchange, we’ve put together this guide to tipping in Germany to help make things as clear as possible. So, whether you’re eating in restaurants or taking a taxi ride, you’ll find out if (and how much) you should tip here!

What is the Tipping Culture in Germany?

Tipping in Germany is customary, but it isn’t as expected as it is in some other countries around Europe. Also, while tips are always appreciated, the amount of money left as a tip is usually quite modest.

In many restaurants, you may find that a service charge has been added to the bill already, and this is quite common practice in Germany. However, as with any restaurant that adds a service charge automatically, you are not obligated to pay this and, should you prefer, you can leave a tip in cash for your server instead.

Why is Tipping So Common in Germany?

Why is Tipping So Common in Germany?

There are a few reasons why tipping in Germany has become so common over recent years. Firstly, it is seen as a way of showing appreciation for good service, and even though a service charge is likely to be included with the bill in restaurants, many people choose to leave a few coins behind as an additional way of showing their appreciation.

Another reason why tipping is common practice in Germany is that service workers are typically paid a low minimum wage, and there is a reliance on tips to supplement their earnings to bring them up to a level that matches the cost of living.

Germany also has one of the strongest tourism industries in Europe, particularly in hotels and hospitality, and the influence of tipping customs from other countries has, over time, contributed to tipping becoming more accepted in Germany.

When Should You Consider Leaving a Tip?

When Should You Consider Leaving a Tip?

As tipping in Germany is becoming increasingly common, there are several instances in which you should consider leaving a tip as a gesture of appreciation for good service. These include:

Tipping Wait Staff

It is customary to tip waiters when eating in a German restaurant or cafe, especially if you receive table service. As we mentioned above, there is often a service charge added to the bill, but you can ask for this to be removed if you would rather leave cash. Likewise, you are welcome to leave an additional tip on top of the service charge for your server.

What is a Fair Tip for Wait Staff in Germany?

A tip of around 5%-10% of the total bill should be left for German wait staff. This means if your bill’s total amount is €100 EUR ($165 AUD), a tip up to €10 EUR ($16.50 AUD) can be left.

Tipping Bar Staff

While tipping isn’t expected in bars, it is appreciated if you have a particularly complicated drinks order or you are with a large group.

What is a Fair Tip for Bar Staff in Germany?

The easiest way to tip bar staff in Germany is to round the total amount up to the nearest Euro. Or, if you prefer to leave a few Euros in cash, leave these on the bar or use a designated tip jar.

Tipping Taxi Drivers

Tipping taxi drivers in Germany is also customary, especially if they have provided an extra level of service, such as carrying your bags into your hotel or providing bottles of water for you to enjoy throughout the ride.

What is a Fair Tip for Taxi Drivers in Germany?

To tip a taxi driver in Germany, it’s best to round the fare up to the nearest Euro. You can also leave a small additional tip if you like, although this will usually be no more than 5% of the total fare.

Tipping Hotel Staff

While certain hotel staff, like wait staff, are also typically paid a low minimum wage, tipping is appreciated but not obligatory. Should you feel the need to tip for excellent service, you should only consider tipping bellhops and housekeeping staff in German hotels.

What is a Fair Tip for Hotel Staff in Germany?

For bellhops, a tip of €2-€3 EUR ($3.30 – $5 AUD) per bag would be an acceptable amount. Housekeeping staff should be tipped the same amount, but for each day they clean your room throughout your stay.

Tipping Tour Guides

You should also consider leaving a tip for a tour guide in Germany, especially if you have received a private tour that was tailored to your specific interests.

What is a Fair Tip for Tour Guides in Germany?

Tour guides should be tipped around €8 EUR ($13 AUD) for each person who was on the tour. So, should there be six of you enjoying the tour, a total tip of €48 EUR ($80 AUD) should be given to the guide. However, this is usually only the case for full-day tours.

German Tipping Etiquette: How to Give a Tip?

German Tipping Etiquette

This will ultimately depend on who you’re tipping, as the custom is different in each situation. For example, in restaurants, you can leave the tip on your table for your server to collect once you’ve left. Or, if you prefer, you can discreetly hand it to them while saying “Danke” – the German word for “Thank you”.

When tipping hotel staff or tour guides, you should hand the straight to the recipient in cash. You can also place the tip inside an envelope, which is a nice way of offering your gratitude discreetly without drawing attention to yourself.

Top Tip: Tipping is always best done using cash in Germany, so make sure you have plenty on you throughout your trip. You can find the best rates on AUD to EUR here.

Are There Any Cases Where You Should Avoid Tipping in Germany?

While tipping is becoming common in several situations in Germany, there are some instances where you don’t have to worry about tipping at all.

The first of these is in fast food restaurants, as counter service is the norm here, and, as such, tipping isn’t expected. The same rule applies to any other instance where you serve yourself, such as supermarkets, bakeries, and buffet restaurants.

You also don’t need to tip when taking public transport in Germany, as this is also considered a self-service situation.

Heading to Germany? Get the Best Rates of Euros at Crown Currency

Get prepared for your German adventure, and know that you always have enough money to tip with by heading to Crown Currency Exchange. Here, you’ll find the best rates on AUD to EUR, along with zero commission fees and no hidden costs. You can find your nearest Crown Currency Exchange store here!

The content of this article is general and provided for information purposes only. Crown Currency Exchange (CCE) doesn’t guarantee or warrant the accuracy, completeness or currency of the articles.

This article may contain hyperlinks to other websites owned or operated by third parties, or references to third party products or services. CCE is not responsible for, and makes no recommendation about, the content or accuracy of any third party website, or for the suitability or performance of any product or service. The inclusion of a link in this article doesn’t imply that CCE endorses the website or third party product/service.

Let's discuss your currency needs

Fill out the form or call us to arrange your complimentary consultation.

© 2024 Crown Currency Exchange.  
All Rights Reserved.

Translate this site