Thailand is one of the most popular destinations in Southeast Asia and is well known for its warm locals and welcoming hospitality, but do you tip in Thailand?
As a traveler to Thailand, it’s crucial to understand the local customs and etiquette, including tipping.
Tipping in Thailand may differ depending on the situation, so it’s important to know when and how much to tip to ensure you are being respectful to the locals.
In this guide, we’ll explore tipping in various establishments and situations, providing you with a comprehensive guide to tipping in Thailand and when to tip.
Tipping in Restaurants
When dining at restaurants in Thailand, tipping is not mandatory, but it is appreciated for exceptional service.
Many upscale establishments automatically include a service charge, typically 10%, to your bill at the end.
However, if no service charge is included, then we recommend you add a tip of around 5-10% of the total bill as a customary.
It’s common to leave the tip on the table in cash when paying the bill, rather than adding it to the bill when paying by credit card. This ensures the money is received by the server.
Tipping In Bars And Cafes
Similar to restaurants, tipping in bars and cafes is not obligatory. You may find a tip jar on the bar or counter by the till, which you are welcome to place a small tip into if you have enjoyed your experience.
A tip of 20-50 baht per drink is generally sufficient. If you’re served at the table, then you may want to give your tip to who provides the service.
You won’t be expected to tip in restaurants, bars or cafes and you’ll never offend a server if you don’t tip. Servers do appreciate it when you do and you’ll be met with warm smiles and good service the next time you come back.
Tipping in Hotels
Tipping in hotels in Thailand typically depend on the type of hotel you are staying at. If you are staying in a luxury, 5* resort, then tipping is a common practice.
It’s customary to tip hotel staff who provide additional services, such as bellboys, porters, and housekeeping. For bellboys and porters, a tip of around 20-50 baht per bag is appropriate.
For housekeeping, leaving a small tip of 50-100 baht at the end of your stay.
However, if you’re staying in hotels, vacation rentals, or budget accommodation, then a tip is not expected or necessary unless you feel the service has been excellent.
Even when staying in luxury resorts, remember that tipping is not obligatory, and it’s ultimately up to your discretion if you want to tip and how much you tip.
Tipping in Taxis
Tipping is not expected in taxis and you will always receive the entirety of your change when paying in cash, however it’s customary to round the price up to the nearest 10 baht.
If you are using Taxi hailing apps such as Grab or Bolt, select the option to pay in cash and then you can tip your driver in cash.
You can also pay card and add a tip through the app at the end, but most drivers prefer to receive the cash.
Tipping Guides and Tour Companies
Again, tipping is not mandatory for tour guides and tour companies, but it’s the only time you’ll likely be asked for a tip.
If you enjoyed your tour, it’s recommended to tip them based on their expertise and the overall satisfaction of the experience.
Depending on the type of tour, a tip of 200 baht to 500 baht for a day tour should suffice, but if you have a multi0day guide, then consider tipping between 500-1000 baht per day.
Again, tipping is discretionary and should reflect your level of satisfaction.
What Currency Do You Tip In?
In Thailand, the local currency is the Thai Baht (THB). It’s preferred to tip in Thai Baht rather than foreign currencies or by using credit cards since the locals can use this money straight away.
Ensure you have some small notes of Thai Baht on hand for tipping purposes. While tipping with foreign currencies may be accepted in some tourist areas, it’s best to use the local currency as a gesture of respect for the local customs.
FAQs About Tipping in Thailand
Is tipping expected in Thailand?
No, tipping is not expected in Thailand and is seen as a nice gesture rather than a necessity.
Is 50 baht a good tip?
50 baht is around $1.50 USD and would be a nice, customary tip for a cafe or restaurant. However, if you are tipping a guide, then 50 baht would be too little.
Tipping is a way to show appreciation for excellent service in Thailand, but it’s important to remember that it’s not obligatory.
If you’re unsure whether to tip or how much to tip in certain situations, observe the locals or ask for advice from hotel staff or locals familiar with the customs.