tipping in Rome

When visiting Rome, one of the greatest and oldest cities of Europe, tourists can be perplexed as to what is expected of them in the way of tips and gratuities. Even though the locals generally don’t tip, gratuities are sometimes expected from tourists just because tourists generally tend to tip. This doesn’t mean it is right or wrong; however, excessive tips should be avoided and percentages forgotten about. Tipping in Rome is more about convenience and you can say ‘tenga il resto’ (take the rest) to avoid leaving with a pocket full of small change.

tipping in hotels in Rome

in Rome Tip 1 or 2 Euros at a fancy hotels

Mid-range and budget hotels definitely do not expect tips. It is simply not customary in Rome as even though jobs in the service industry are not hugely well-paid, the salary is certainly enough to live off. In grander, more Americanised hotels, you may want to tip the porter a Euro or two for taking your bags to your room, and you may choose to leave the cleaning staff a similar amount if they are providing a really good service.

tipping customs for restaurants in Rome

At a restaurant don't tip in Rome

Italians do not often tip and this does not change whether they are eating in a small independent café, a lunchtime pizza and pasta place, or a trendy international restaurant. As a visitor coming to Rome, tips will be anticipated but not expected, solely due to the fact that many visiting American tourists tend to vastly over tip and leave up to twenty per cent of the bill. It’s much more appropriate to just leave a few cents or a Euro or two for a more expensive meal or if you are in a group.

tip etiquette at bar in Rome

in Rome don't tip at a bar

You will never see a local tipping in a bar unless you count leaving a few cents change on the bar. For table service you might see people leaving up to a Euro or two, but again, it’s just what’s convenient to leave to round up the bill to a whole Euro and avoid keeping small change rattling around in the pockets.

Rome has many street side cafés and bars, as well as some great clubs. Cul de Sac in the Piazza Navona is a nice option for wine. In fact, it was the first proper wine bar in the city and opened in 1977. Enjoy a glass while sitting on one of the tables on the street and watching the goings-on in the surrounding piazza. Bar Necci is a trendy garden bar with tables positioned around trees and plants and youngsters chatting and drinking cocktails.

should you tip your taxi driver

In Rome Round up your taxi fare

The same rounding up rule applies to tipping taxi drivers. Locals will rarely leave a gratuity, but instead, will just round up to the next Euro or 50 cents when paying the fare. Taxis in Rome are notoriously dishonest so you definitely shouldn’t tip if you feel you were ripped off. Tipping certainly isn’t expected from the drivers but if you feel like you had exceptional service you may want to give a little something, but never over about five per cent of the fare.

should you tip tour guides in Rome

Tip tour guides a few euros in Rome

When paying for and taking an organised tour it’s difficult to know what the tipping etiquette is and to decide how much to tip afterwards. Tour guides are used to receiving a tip or gratuity of some kind but that doesn’t mean you are obliged to leave one. For a good personal, friendly service it’s nice to leave a few Euros but you definitely don’t need to think in percentages, or feel obligated to leave anything at all.

should you tip your hairdresser

in Rome don't tip at a hairdresser

The tipping etiquette for hair dressers is much the same for the rest of the service industries: not expected but a small gratuity will be appreciated. Hair dressers get paid a small but reasonable salary depending on the salon and adding a couple of Euros to your bill is a nice gesture if you were treated really well.