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Learn how to tip like a local in London and reward the good service you receive.
Do you tip in London?
- It is customary to leave 10 to 15% of the bill as tip when eating out, though some restaurants add on a service charge instead.
- In London hotels, people often tip porters.
- It is polite to round up your taxi fare to the nearest pound for black cabs and licensed minicabs.
Tipping is appreciated but not always appropriate in London. There are some situations where it is customary, for example in restaurants. However, tips in the UK are discretionary and depend on the quality of the service you receive.
Tipping in London’s restaurants
It is customary to leave 10 to 15% of the bill when eating out. However, restaurants often add on a service charge (usually 12.5%), especially if you’re in a large group, so it’s worth checking your bill if you don’t want to tip twice.
It’s not customary to pay a tip (or ‘gratuities’) for fast food, self-service or takeaway meals.
Many contactless or chip and pin payment machines have an option to add on a tip so you do not have to leave it in cash.
Top tip: Although restaurants (and other businesses) should make their policy clear, it’s worth checking with your waiter that they will personally receive your tip rather than the company – particularly if you’re paying by credit card.
Tipping in bars and pubs
People generally do not tip in bars and pubs in London. Bartenders sometimes hand back change on a tipping tray, although it’s still up to you to choose to leave a tip.
Tipping in London hotels
If there’s no service charge added to your bill in a hotel restaurant, it’s customary to tip as for any other restaurant (10 to 15% of the bill).
For room cleaning staff, you can leave an amount of your choosing on departure. Tips in the UK for other hotel staff such as concierges and door staff are discretionary and are most commonplace for porters.
Tipping taxi drivers
It is polite to tip 10 to 15% of the taxi fare for black cabs and licensed minicabs in London.
However, most people simply round up the fare to the nearest £1 and tell the driver to “keep the change”. If you’ve had a longer journey and the driver has assisted you with luggage, you may wish to tip a little more, up to £5.
Is service charge a tip?
Yes. ‘Service charge’ or ‘gratuities’ are exactly the same as a tip.
Tipping in the rest of the UK
Tipping in the UK is the same as in London, including customary amounts and the ways to tip in restaurants, bars, pubs, hotels and taxis.
Learn about British currency and find other useful traveller information.