Tips on Tips


In Australia, leaving a tip seems a bit of a hit and miss affair; some people tips, and others don’t. Tipping in Australia is for good service and generally around 10%, but it is fair to say we don’t have a ‘tipping culture.’

Overseas, tipping is quite commonplace, particularly in America, where tip for service is an expectation in many places. Coupled with a low hourly rate, a tip in the hospitality industry is seen as part of income.

Here in Australia, I am not sure what the correct etiquette is on tipping.

I will often drop a gold coin in the tips jar at my local morning coffee shop for the barista, more as a way of saying, “thanks for making a great coffee”, and to also show my appreciation.

Recently I was out dining with friends, and after the meal, we asked, could we have the bill, please. The bill arrived in a nice leather wallet with a neatly printed account with the meal total, and a space for your tip left blank for us to fill in before concluding the sale. This space caused some discussion amongst our group as we felt it implied we should consider putting in a tip. (which we eventually did)

If you wish to reward exceptional service, my preference is to give your wait staff a tip in cash as sometimes they don’t receive tips included on a credit card.

In conclusion, it appears there is no hard and fast rule on tipping for service in Australia, so don’t feel obligated or pressured to leave a tip, particularly if you didn’t receive service that met your expectations.

I hope this helps next time you are paying your restaurant bill.