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Tipping in Ireland: Why, When & What You Should Tip in Ireland in 2024!

Tipping in Ireland is one thing I get asked about time and time again. Those planning a trip to the Emerald Isle tend to get confused about the tipping etiquette here. Well, lucky for you, you found yourself a local guide. I’m here to clear up all your tipping worries you may have!

So, let’s dive into it, shall we? Before you pull out your wallet at a bustling Irish pub or after a lovely meal at a charming local restaurant, it’s worth understanding some basic tipping norms in Ireland.

Spoiler alert – it’s not as complicated as you might think, and I promise by the end of this article, you’ll become a tipping pro!

Tip on a table in a cafe in Ireland

What is Tipping?

Tipping, in simple words, is giving a little extra to the people who serve us, as a way of saying ‘thank you’ for their service. It’s a common practice in many countries, and yes, it includes Ireland too!

But we don’t tend to tip in the same way as say in the United States. So, in today’s post I am going to walk you through when you should and should not tip in Ireland.

Tipping in Ireland VS Tipping in the United States

Tipping in IrelandTipping in the States
❌ Tipping is NOT mandatory✅ Tipping IS mandatory
❌ Tipping is NOT expected✅ Tipping IS expected
✅ Tip 10% or Round up the bill✅ Tip over 25%

Tipping culture most definitely came over to Ireland from across the pond, however, with that being said the way the Irish tip is very much different to those from the US.

In the States, tipping is seen as mandatory. This is mainly due to those working in the service industry depending on tips to make up for their low base salary. However, in Ireland, all staff no matter the industry are paid at least minimum wage (which is currently €12.70 a hour).

Therefore, in Ireland, tipping is seen more as a bonus, a nice little thank you for good service, rather than a necessity. If the service was top-notch and you really enjoyed it then feel free to leave a tip. But, if it wasn’t, don’t sweat it – no hard feelings!

No one is going to case you out of a restaurant looking for their money, and if they did they would more than likely get fired from their position.

So, in a nutshell, when in Ireland, tip as you please, not as you must.

Where should you tip in Ireland?

In Ireland we also don’t tip in all the same places as they do in the US. So in this section of the post we are going to discuss all the scenarios where you may want to leave a tip while visiting the Emerald Isle. We will look at restaurants, tours, hotels, taxi’s and even hair dressers.

I have provided you with a little cheat sheet for those of you who don’t have time to read the entire post although I recommend you do, because as you can see from the chart, it can get a little confusing.

Restaurants✅ It’s Common
Pubs/Bars/Café’s🤷‍♀️ Sometimes
Hotel Staff (Housekeeping/Concierge)❌ Not Common
Hair Dressers/Beauticians/Spa Services✅ It’s Common
Taxi Driver✅ It’s Common
Bus Driver❌ Not Common
Tour Guide❌ Not Common (But…)
Valets✅ It’s Common
Food Delivery Service🤷‍♀️ Sometimes

tipping in Restaurants in Ireland

Restaurants are probably the most likely place to tip in Ireland. And in my personal opinion, I think you should always tip once you receive a high level of service. However, it is not mandatory.

It is a common misconception that waiting staff are well-paid in Ireland. And, yes unlike the US there are regulations in place that ensure waiting staff receive minimum wage. However, staff have few opportunities to increase wages no matter how long they may be working in one restaurant.

And the minimum wage is ridiculously low considering the cost of living in Ireland. So, if you can afford to tip I highly recommend you do so. If you actually received good service that is!

tipping in Cafés in Ireland

Tipping in a cafe is less likely in Ireland however it is not unheard of. It is common to see a tip jar at the register as you pay for your coffee, tea or pastry.

This practice is completely relaxed. If you’ve enjoyed a tasty cake with your coffee and you’re feeling generous, feel free to leave some loose change but its not rude to leave nothing either.

I have also seen an increase in a tip option in cafés when paying by card, I will only really leave something here if I ordered food that was being brought down to my table or required some sort of service outside the register area.

tipping in Pubs & bars in Ireland

Tipping practice in Irish pubs varies depending on the circumstances. A lot of Irish pubs also operate as a restaurant, in this scenario, when customers are ordering both food and drink, it is common to leave a tip. Much like in a traditional restaurant, 10% or rounding up the bill is common.

You may also find yourself in a pub where you receive table service for your drink order, especially if you are sitting in a big group. Here, it is common to leave some loose change for your server but again this is not expected, it is more of a kind gesture than a mandatory thing to do.

However, nine times out of ten, when entering an Irish pub you will walk up to the bar and order your own drink, once it is made you will bring it back to your table yourself. In this case, there is no need to tip.

Remember, no matter the scenario, tipping is a way to express your gratitude for good service, but it’s not a must-do rule. So, relax, enjoy your drink, and when in doubt, just do what feels right to you!

tipping in Hotels in Ireland

When I visit the States tipping in hotels is very much something I need to get my head around. It really just not a common thing here in Ireland.

Yes, you may receive a lovely welcoming from the concierge team or housekeeping went the extra mile and made cute swans out of your towels.

Tipping in Hotels is not as common in Ireland but again I am sure the staff would very much appreciate it if it is something you decide to do. This doesn’t need to be a huge amount, perhaps €1 or €2 to say thank you for carrying your bags, housekeeping or a good concierge service. No matter what you decide the staff will not be offended.

tipping Taxi’s in Ireland

Tipping Taxi driver in Ireland used to be far more common a couple of years ago but if I am being honest it is something I am seeing less and less of as the years go on.

You see Taxi’s tend to be extremely expensive in Ireland, we do not have ride share services like Uber or Bolt. So, customers tend to be paying quite a high rate to begin with.

Uber was banned in Ireland because the taxi driver states that it was unfair and costing them their livelihood. And while I have to agree with them to some extent, the prices for taxi’s are starting to become unaffordable for you average day worker. So, therefore tipping is less likely.

However, with that being said If the driver was friendly, took the quickest route, or helped with your luggage, it’d be a nice gesture to round up the fare or leave an extra euro or two.

Getting a taxi in Ireland is becoming increasingly difficult, especially in busy spots such as Dublin and Cork. So, I always appreciate when one eventually stops to allow me to get home, so in situations where I can not get one I am more likely to give my driver a little thank you tip.

Bus drivers tipping culture ireland

One thing I noticed while visiting the US is a lot of people tend to tip the bus drivers for tours and experiences. This is not common practice in Ireland however like all services it is appreciated.

However, one thing you have to do when exiting the bus is thank the driver. This is a big cultural thing in Ireland and someone leaving without saying thank you will not go unnoticed. Especially if they are Irish themselves!

ireland tipping Culture for Tour guides

It is common for those visiting Ireland to take part in a range of tours while they are here, particularly tours to the Cliffs of Moher from Dublin or from Galway city.

And these tours can last anywhere from eight to eleven hours, where you will be giving a guide to lead you through the attractions and tell you stories on the drive there.

I would say leaving a little thank you token with these guides is quite a common practice, however, this is more than likely down to the high level of US tourists we get each year.

I would be quite surprised to see Irish person tip after a day trip to the Giants Causeway or Glendalough.

However, if you do find yourself adding a FREE walking tour to your Ireland itinerary then I advise leaving the guide a tip as this is how they earn there income. Nonetheless, taking tours in Ireland, say a food tour in Dublin or a wonderful day trip from Dublin to Cork is a great way to advance your Ireland Itinerary.

tipping in Hair dressers or spa centres in Ireland

Now, I know it is unlikely for a tourist to decide to get their hair done while in Ireland but just incase you are visiting to attend a wedding or a event I said it is best to include this category in the post.

When it comes to hairdressers you might feel the need to tip a little something extra if you’ve had a particularly good experience. This could be as simple as a fabulous haircut that makes your confidence peak.

Leaving a tip in a salon really comes down to personal preference and there is no set rule on how much you should or should not leave. I typically throw my hairdresser a €5/€10 depending on what I get done.

If you are planning on getting a relaxing spa treatment while staying in a hotel it can be nice to leave a little thank you as you leave. I typically go with €2/3 euros, but again this depends don’t the price and duration of the service. It is completely optional.

Again, similar practices apply for beauty services like getting your nails done.

tipping Food Delivery driver in Ireland

Years ago I used to leave a tip for a food delivery driver. This would have only been a euro or two, but recently, I have found that a delivery charge has been added to nearly every service in the country. So, if I am being honestly I rarely leave anything extra now. It is definitely not expected.

How much should I tip in Ireland?

If am a being honest there is not set number in which you should tip in Ireland as there is many different circumstance in which would determine the tip value.

I have created a little table down below with estimated tip options for different types of services. As well as a more detailed guide on tipping in restaurants as it is the most common place to leave a gratuity in Ireland.

Activity/ServiceAnswerEstimated Tip
Restaurants✅ It’s Common10% of the bill
Pubs/Bars/Café’s🤷‍♀️ SometimesSpare Change
Hotel Staff (Housekeeping/Concierge)❌ Not CommonSpare Change
Hair Dressers/Beauticians/Spa Services✅ It’s Common5/10% of the bill
Taxi Driver🤷‍♀️ SometimesSpare Change
Bus Driver❌ Not CommonSpare Change
Tour Guide❌ Not Common (But…)Spare Change
Food Delivery Service🤷‍♀️ SometimesSpare Change

How Much to tip in Restaurants

So, while I recommend you leave your server a little thank you, there is no set amount expected so to speak. As a rule of thumb, I like to leave around 10% of my bill. So, if my meal comes to €50 euro I will leave an additional €5 but if I am being honest even an extra €2 would mean the world to your waiter or waitress.

Another common tipping practice in Irish restaurants is ‘rounding up the bill‘. So, say the bill comes to €56.60 you’ll leave €60.

I also wanted to bring to your attention the term ‘service charge‘, if you are sitting with a large party of people you may notice that a service charge is automatically added to your bill.

This can be seen as a ‘automatic tip‘, however, I personally, I always ask the server if they actually receive this money. I used to work in a restaurant for many years and would only receive a very small percentage of this charge.

Another thing to ask your server about is whether they actually get to keep the credit card tips, it is not uncommon for this to be decided by all the staff working that night. Sometimes cash is much more beneficial for the person who actually looked after you!

Where should you not tip in Ireland?

While tipping is appreciated in many instances in Ireland, there are certain situations where it’s not typically expected. For example, in fast food restaurants or coffee shops, where service is quick, tipping isn’t usually necessary. Also, when using public transport such as buses or trams, it’s not common practice to tip the driver.

The same goes for most retail stores; service is part of the package and a tip isn’t expected. Lastly, in some pubs, particularly outside of the city centre, people often don’t tip the bartender unless they’ve gone above and beyond in some way.

Tipping Ireland Common FAQ’s in Ireland?

Is tipping expected in Ireland?

No, tipping isn’t generally expected in Ireland, but it’s a nice gesture to show appreciation for excellent service. While there’s no set rule, if you’ve enjoyed the service in a restaurant or a taxi ride, for example, leaving a few euros can express your thanks.

Is it rude not to tip in Ireland?

No, it’s not considered rude if you choose not to tip in Ireland. Since tipping is not mandatory here, people understand if you decide not to. It’s all about your comfort and satisfaction with the service you have received. So, don’t worry too much. Just enjoy your time in Ireland and the wonderful experiences it has to offer!

What happens if you don’t leave a tip in Ireland?

If you decide not to leave a tip in Ireland, nothing much will happen. We Irish understand that tipping is down to personal preference and circumstances. No one is going to come running after you questioning why you did not leave a tip.

What is the general rule for tipping in Ireland?

The general rule for tipping in Ireland is pretty relaxed. If you’re in a restaurant and the service was good, a tip of around 10% is customary. But don’t feel obliged; if the service wasn’t up to scratch, it’s perfectly okay not to tip.

How much do you tip a bus driver in Ireland?

Tipping a bus driver in Ireland isn’t a common practice, but it can certainly be done if you feel the service was exceptional – maybe they helped with your heavy bags or provided some useful local tips. If you decide to tip, it’s entirely up to you how much you give. But in this case a euro or two would be enough to say thank you.

Do you leave a tip if there is a service charge?

In Ireland, if there’s already a service charge added to your bill, there’s no need for you to leave a tip. This charge is meant to reward the staff for their service.

Can you tip on card in Ireland?

Yes, it is common to see card tipping in Ireland. However, I advise asking the staff if they actually get to keep the tips that go through this system as I have heard many different stories where the money is never carried over to the waiter. In this case, it is best to leave cash.

Hope this Tipping in Ireland Guide Helps!

To wrap up, tipping in Ireland is all about appreciating great service. There’s no hard and fast rule, it’s more about what feels right for you. Following the general guidelines will help you navigate situations where a tip might be expected. But remember, at the end of the day, tipping is a personal decision based on your satisfaction with the service provided. So, enjoy your visit to Ireland, embrace the culture, and don’t stress too much about the tipping – just go with the flow!

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