Tipping in Italy, should you? How much?

imageYou might find service in restaurants a little more relaxed in Italy, that’s not to say it’s bad, it’s just a little less intense. The reason for this is that the servers are paid a salary. They are regular employees. In the US serving can be a lucrative job for a person with good people skills, balance, memory, attention to detail, and initiative. Since tipping isn’t mandatory and everyone knows that servers depend on tips to pay their bills, servers must go out of their way, either with their personality, or their level of service, or both to get really good tips. By really good I mean 25% or up. Its not uncommon for servers to get 50% tips for really outstanding service, because many people believe in sharing their wealth, and who better to share it with than a hard-working server who just made your dining experience exceptional? Most people tip 20% for adequate and pleasant service, except for cheapskates, whose karma will get them anyway 😉 So in Italy, where servers recieve a wage, do you still tip? The answer is Absolutely yes, unless it is already included. If it is included it’s usually 12% and of course you can add to it if you feel they deserve a little more. The amount which is customary to tip here is very different, it’s 10-15%! Tipping about half as much as you usually would makes the poor exchange rate a little more bearable for an American in Europe:)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *