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tipping in Scotland

Tipping isn’t expected in Scotland the way it Canada and the US. This is because Scotland is a part of the United Kingdom, where according to the law, all staff must be paid at least the National Minimum Wage of £6.50 per hour. This is regardless of whether they receive tips or not. As such it’s not required to leave a tip for most services in Scotland.

In fact some workers in Scotland may find tipping offensive, whilst others will be grateful. Either way they probably won't expect the tip. This is what makes it imperative to understand tipping etiquette in Scotland. This guide will tell you everything you need to know.

tipping in hotels in Scotland

in Scotland Tip £2-£5 at Hotels

As a general rule, it is very rare that one expects to tip in Scotland. However, if the service is above standard, giving a small tip to workers would be considered incredibly polite. Same goes for when tipping in hotels in Scotland. For example, usually people leave a tip for the chambermaid if their work is exceptional, but this doesn’t mean it’s a requirement. In other cases, you should avoid tipping room service bringing drinks/food to your room, as they find it offensive. However, as with anywhere in the world, make sure to give a small tip (usually £2) to the porter who carries your bags to your room.

tipping customs for restaurants in Scotland

At a restaurant Tip 10% in Scotland

Tipping is uncommon in casual restaurants where food is brought to your table and you pay for your order at the counter, but there is no harm in leaving a pound or two for the waiter. Conversely, in restaurants where the waiter/waitress brings the food to your table and the bill, it is usual to tip around 10%. However, this of course does vary from place to place.

For instance, in fine dining restaurants, usually waiter/waitresses expect a high tip of 15%. While it isn’t compulsory, not leaving a tip may be considered rude unless of course you had a problem with the service. In some restaurants, a 10% service charge is always added to the bill. Therefore, it isn’t exactly necessary to tip the waiter/waitress.

tip etiquette at barman in Scotland

In Scotland Don't tip at a bar

Bartenders in bars and pubs in Scotland don’t expect to be tipped by customers. They might find tipping offensive, particularly if you haven’t visited the bar before. Therefore, if you are visiting a pub or bar in Scotland for the first time, it would be good option to just enjoy the drink or buy one for that ‘dime’ next to you rather than tipping the bartender. Conversely, if you visit the bar often and have managed to develop a rapport with the bartender, you can always offer to buy him/her a drink. You can do so by first placing your order and then saying ‘and one drink for yourself’. In some circumstances, the bartender may actually buy a drink for themselves or they will choose to take it as a tip of around £1.

should you tip your taxi driver

When taking a taxi Round up the fare

Similar to any other service in Scotland, it isn’t a requirement or necessity to leave a tip for taxi drivers. Nevertheless, it is expected to round up to the nearest pound on taxi journeys that are metered. This makes it more convenient for both the drivers and passengers and usually serves better than a tip. However, if you are hiring a taxi for a ride to the airport, then to make sure to tip the drive two or three pounds if he helps with your luggage.

should you tip tour guides in Scotland

Tip tour guides Tip £5-£10 in Scotland

Tour guides are perhaps the only industry in Scotland where individuals actually expect a tip. But the amount you are supposed to tip usually depends on the type of tour you are taking. For instance, if you are taking a small walking tour, it would be nice to leave a tip of around £5. Conversely, if you are taking a tour around the entire city of Scotland or ask your tour guide to show you or visit extra places, you may want to tip them 10% of the bill.

should you tip your hairdresser

in Scotland Tip 10 - 15% at a hairdresser

When you talk about going to a hairdresser in Scotland, gratuity isn’t exactly obligatory. However, the hairdresser might expect you to give him/her something for a little extra effort put in or if you are overly satisfied. For example, if you get a nice haircut and are extremely satisfied with your new look, then you should tip the hair dresser 10% of the bill. Conversely, if you aren’t happy with the services provide, you can always choose not to leave a tip.

should you tip tour guides in Scotland

Tip tour guides Tip £5-£10 in Scotland

Tour guides are perhaps the only industry in Scotland where individuals actually expect a tip. But the amount you are supposed to tip usually depends on the type of tour you are taking. For instance, if you are taking a small walking tour, it would be nice to leave a tip of around £5. Conversely, if you are taking a tour around the entire city of Scotland or ask your tour guide to show you or visit extra places, you may want to tip them 10% of the bill.