Tipping in Germany: A Comprehensive Guide to Gratuity Etiquette

Traveling to Germany can be an unforgettable experience, filled with rich history, beautiful landscapes, and mouthwatering cuisine. One aspect of traveling that often confuses visitors, however, is tipping etiquette. How much should you tip? When is it appropriate to tip? In this comprehensive guide, we’ll explore the ins and outs of tipping in Germany, ensuring that your next trip is as smooth and enjoyable as possible.

A Brief Overview of Tipping Culture in Germany

Tipping in Germany, like in many European countries, is quite different from tipping in the United States. In general, tipping is less obligatory and tends to be more of a gesture of appreciation for excellent service. However, there are some situations where tipping is expected, and knowing these expectations can help you navigate your German adventure with ease.

Dining Out: Tipping in Restaurants, Cafés, and Bars


In Germany, tipping in restaurants is typically expected, but at a lower rate than what you might be used to in the United States. It’s common to tip around 5-10% of the bill, depending on the level of service.

To tip, you can either round up to the nearest euro or add the desired amount to the bill. It’s customary to tell the server the total amount you’d like to pay, including the tip, rather than leaving the tip on the table. For example, if your bill is €47, you might say “50, please” to indicate that you’d like to tip €3.

Cafés and Bars

Tipping in cafés and bars is similar to tipping in restaurants, but the amounts might be smaller. If you’re just having a coffee or a drink, it’s appropriate to round up to the nearest euro or add a small tip, such as €0.50 to €1. As in restaurants, it’s customary to tell the server the total amount you’d like to pay, including the tip.

Transportation: Tipping Taxi Drivers and Airport Services


When taking a taxi, it’s customary to tip the driver. A good rule of thumb is to round up to the nearest euro or add 5-10% to the fare, depending on the length of the ride and the quality of service. If the driver helps you with your luggage or provides exceptional service, you may want to tip a bit more.

Airport Services

For airport services like baggage porters, a tip of around €1-2 per bag is customary, depending on the size and weight of your luggage.

Accommodation: Tipping Hotel Staff

Bellhops and Porters

When staying at a hotel, it’s polite to tip bellhops and porters who assist you with your luggage. A tip of €1-2 per bag is standard, depending on the size and weight of your luggage and the level of service provided.


Housekeeping staff should also be tipped, especially if you’re staying at the hotel for more than one night. A tip of €1-3 per night, left on the pillow or in a visible spot with a note, is an appropriate way to show your appreciation for their hard work.


If the hotel concierge provides exceptional service, such as making restaurant reservations or arranging tickets to events, it’s appropriate to tip them for their assistance. A tip of €5-10, depending on the difficulty of the task and the level of service provided, is customary.

Personal Services: Tipping Hairdressers, Beauticians, and Spa Staff

Hairdressers and Beauticians

When visiting a hair salon or beauty parlor, it’s customary to tip your stylist or beautician around 5-10% of the bill, depending on the quality of service and the complexity of the treatment you receive.

Spa Staff

For spa treatments, a tip of around 5-10% of the cost of the service is appropriate, depending on the quality of the treatment and the level of service provided. If you’re receiving multiple treatments, you can tip based on the total cost or tip each provider separately.

Guided Tours: Tipping Tour Guides

When participating in a guided tour, it’s customary to tip the guide if you enjoyed the experience. A tip of €1-5 per person, depending on the length and quality of the tour, is appropriate. If the tour is particularly long or informative, you may want to tip more.

Final Thoughts: Understanding and Appreciating Tipping Etiquette in Germany

Tipping in Germany can be a bit more nuanced than in other countries, but with this comprehensive guide in hand, you’ll have no trouble navigating the world of German tipping etiquette. Remember that tipping is a way to show appreciation for excellent service, and a small gesture can go a long way in making someone’s day.

Now that you’re well-versed in tipping in Germany, why not make your next trip even easier with our German Tipping Calculator? This handy tool takes the guesswork out of tipping by providing you with suggested tip amounts based on the type of service, service quality, and other specific factors. Give it a try on your next German adventure and enjoy a stress-free journey as you explore everything this beautiful country has to offer. Happy travels!

Found our Tipping Guides or Calculators helpful? Whether you're traveling to a new destination or dining out in your home city, understanding tipping etiquette can really enhance your experience. Share these tools and guides with your friends, family, or fellow adventurers. Together, we can help each other navigate the diverse world of tipping. After all, sharing knowledge makes all our journeys more rewarding. Let's help each other be savvy travelers, no matter where our journeys take us!

3 thoughts on “Tipping in Germany: A Comprehensive Guide to Gratuity Etiquette”

  1. As a German waiter, I can tell you that while it is true that Germans do not generally expect tips, it is still common to leave a small tip to show appreciation for good service. In restaurants, it is customary to round up the bill to the nearest Euro or add a small amount, usually between 5-10%, to the total price.

    If you choose to leave a tip, it is usually best to hand it directly to the service provider and say “Danke” (thank you) as you do so. Alternatively, you can also leave the tip on the table or in a tip jar, but it is always appreciated to acknowledge the service provider with a verbal “Danke” or “Vielen Dank” (thank you very much).

    In other service industries such as hairdressing, taxi, and hotel services, tipping is less common but still appreciated. The amount of the tip can vary depending on the level of service, but a small amount, usually around 5%, is generally considered appropriate.

    In conclusion, while tipping is not expected in Germany, it is still a kind gesture to show appreciation for good service. Whether you choose to leave a tip or not, always remember to thank the service provider for their service.

    I hope this information is helpful to you and I wish you a pleasant stay in Germany.

  2. Herr Albert,

    Danke for your informative response on tipping in Germany. I appreciate the insights you provided on the local customs and practices in the service industry. I’m curious, are there any particular regions or cities in Germany where tipping is more common or less common than others? Additionally, are there any situations where tipping is not expected or may even be considered rude?

  3. To answer your first question, tipping customs in Germany are generally consistent throughout the country, and there are no specific regions or cities where tipping is more or less common. However, it’s worth noting that in some tourist areas or popular destinations, such as Oktoberfest in Munich, tipping may be more common due to the high volume of visitors.

    As for your second question, there are certain situations where tipping is not expected or may even be considered rude. For example, it is not common to tip in fast-food restaurants or self-service cafes, where customers pay for their meals at the counter and do not receive table service. Additionally, it is not necessary to tip in situations where the service was poor or below expectations. While it’s always polite to thank the service provider for their work, there is no obligation to leave a tip if the service did not meet your standards.

    I hope this information is helpful, and please let me know if you have any further questions or concerns.

    Best regards,

    Marcus Albert

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