To tip or not to tip?

Lake Burley Griffin, Canberra.  Photo credit: Australian Capital Tourism

Tipping in Australia

To tip or not to tip? That is the question.

Unlike the US, where they’ll hunt you down for leaving without paying a tip, tipping in Australia is much like it is in the UK. It’s a gratuity for good service rather than a surcharge you’re expected to pay no matter how surly your waiter or overdone your steak.

Goods & Services Tax of 10% will be added to your restaurant bill in the same way that VAT would be added in the UK. It’s a government tax, not a service charge for the staff.

Don’t expect ingratiating, fawning service – it’s not the Australian way, but it will usually be polite and efficient. If you do experience poor service you’re quite within your rights not to leave anything!

How Much Should I Tip In Australia?

Restaurants: Up to 10% for good service (although the last time we offered 10% in Perth the waitress politely refused and only took 5%).

Bars: Nothing expected, but saying “keep the change” is always welcome.

Fast food outlets: Nothing

Taxis: Round up to the nearest dollar if the service is good.

Hotels: Nothing is expected for housekeeping or portering, but a small tip for particularly good service (or particularly heavy bags) always goes down well.

A couple of good apps are:

for android

and for i-phone

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