tipping in Berlin

If you’re planning a trip to the capital city of Germany then you might be wondering what the tipping etiquette is. Unlike many European cities where tipping doesn’t really exist, in Berlin, there is definitely a tipping culture. Locals and tourists alike are seen to tip but only if the service deserves it; it is certainly not obligatory.

The eclectic city of Berlin has an interesting history and all visitors will want to have a look at remains of the old Berlin Wall which are dotted around the city. There are many other historical sites, for instance, Checkpoint Charlie, the Reichstag building and the Brandenburg Gate. There are numerous museums including some quite unusual ones such as the Buchstaben museum which is a museum about the alphabet, and the Computer Games Museum where visitors can reminisce over a game of space invaders. There are also many beautiful parks and a wide variety of restaurants to try.

tipping in hotels in Berlin

in Berlin Tip 2 or 3 Euros at high-end hotels

If you’re staying in a cheap establishment like a hostel or campsite, tips are definitely not required. However, for budget to luxury hotels you may want to leave something for the maid each day. Two or three Euros will be sufficient and the same can be given per bag if there is a porter to take your bags to your room. If there is valet parking you can give a similar amount to the parking attendant.

tipping customs for restaurants in Berlin

In Berlin round up the bill at restaurants

In cafés and restaurants in Berlin it is usual to round up the bill to the next Euro or two, but for excellent service you can add between five and ten per cent to your bill. Have a careful look at the bill as sometimes service is included, so in this case you will only want to leave extra if the service was truly exceptional. Ten per cent at a nice restaurant with good service is a standard amount to stick to when tipping. It’s not common to leave money on the table, so instead, hand your cash or card to your waiter and tell them the amount you want to pay including the tip. If the bill is €15.50, for example, you may tell the server to take €17 and they will then bring you back three Euros in change.

tip etiquette at bars in Berlin

in Berlin Tip a few euros at a Bar

Leaving gratuities in a bar depends on what kind of place it is. A trendy student hangout might have a tip jar on the counter and you can add a few Euros when you leave or offer to buy your bartender a drink. In classier places with table service you can add between five and ten per cent gratuity depending on the quality of the service.

should you tip your taxi driver

in Berlin round up your taxi fare

Berlin locals often tip their taxi drivers by rounding up to the nearest Euro for short trips. For longer journeys they may add a Euro or two up to ten per cent of the bill if the service was good. Don’t feel obliged to tip taxi drivers, so if the service was unreliable or unfriendly, don’t leave any gratuity.

should you tip your hairdresser

in Berlin don't tip your hairdresser

It’s quite usual to tip hairdressers around ten per cent of the bill in Berlin. The staff won’t expect a tip but it’s very much appreciated if you had a good experience. You may want to give a couple of Euros to the junior who washed or dried your hair as well.

should you tip tour guides in Berlin

Tip tour guides 0 - 10% in Berlin

There are many tours for visitors to experience in Berlin, some paid and some for free. For the paid tours you may wish to add a few Euros up to about ten per cent of the cost of the tour if the tour guide was knowledgeable and friendly. If the tour is free you can give up to the amount you think the tour was worth, based on quality as well as the time taken, and adding a little extra for excellence.