Conscientious Traveler Knows How to Tip May 17
The Conscientious Traveler/Retired Person Knows When and How Much to Tip
When you retire in Mexico, or are traveling, there can be a lot of angst around tipping, especially if you don’t really know which people to tip and how much. When you arrive in Mexico you see so many people who obviously don’t earn very much money. There is an expectation that money will be flowing from your pocket to theirs, but what exactly are the rules for this process? When you first retire in Mexico you want to be conscientious and not go around insulting people by tipping them when you shouldn’t… but what if they are calling you “cheapskate” as you walk away?
The conscientious traveler/retired person knows that there are people who work for tips only, like airport porters. Others, like taxi drivers set their price for the trip, but then might help you with your bags and you wonder if you should tip them or not.
The following is a list of jobs, whether or not you should tip, and how much. Practice being a well-informed conscientious traveler and just for fun, hold a piece of paper up over the right hand columns and think of your own answer before checking to see if you are correct.
Tipping Guidelines for Those Who Retire in Mexico or are Conscientious Travelers
|restaurant (formal)||yes||10-15%, minimum 5 pesos|
|comida corrida||optional||5 peso minimum for 1 person.10 peso minimum for 2 people.|
|small business proprieter||no||Imagine you are at work or selling your product and one of your customers just comes up and gives you 2 dollars. How would you feel?|
|grocery packer||yes||Since they don’t receive a salary, they work for tips. 2-5 pesos.|
|cleaning staff in hotel||optional||10 pesos and up. This varies by the service you receive and the number of days you stay. (If the hotel costs 1000 pesos a day you may want to start at 30 pesos.)|
|bell boy at expensive hotel||yes||20 peso minimum.|
|service personnel (e.g. cable TV installer)||no||Imagine you are at work and one of your customers just comes up and gives you 2 dollars. How would you feel? If you ever do want to tip someone like this, you have to give at least enough for a meal.|
|gas station attendant||optional||If you are feeling really generous, 5-10 pesos. 3 pesos for a window wash is OK.|
|taxi drivers||no||If they load and unload a lot of packages for you, you can tip 5 pesos (10 would be more appreciated).|
|porter at the airport||yes||These men don’t have a salary and work for tips. Tip 20-50 pesos. Give the higher amount if they have loaded your luggage on the hand cart and wait for you to exchange money, etc.|
|parking lot attendants (help you back out of your parking space)||optional||2-3 pesos|
|mariachi bands||yes||Mariachis work by the song. A set of 3 songs will cost a minimum of 150 pesos. There’s two ways to hear them. One, you find them in the zocalo and ask them to come to play for you. Two, they come into a restaurant and start playing. It’s best to give at least 5 pesos if they come by with a hat afterwards.|
|roving musicians||optional||3-10 pesos|
So, if you didn’t get the answers right, but intend to retire in Mexico, or worse, are already retired in Mexico, you might want to print out the chart and hang it on your fridge. You can refer to it before you go out and about.
If you are a conscientious traveler, you will feel more relaxed knowing that you are neither insulting people, nor making yourself look cheap. Ahhhh. What a relief.
Hope you and your family are all in good health! Thank you very much for the e-book and companions. They are, as ever, extremely informative.
Your empathy with the Mexican culture shines through and the book offers an insight into living in Mexico that I haven’t found in other books about living or travelling in Mexico.
I particularly liked the cultural differences and how not to upset people and what to expect from the beaurocracy out there. I had also paid particular close attention to you article about the cost of living for the three lifestyles you showed. I had seen this article previously on your website and I have used it as a gauge for the lifestyle my family and I might expect to have in Mexico.
With your article and other information I’ve researched on the internet I’ve come up with a figure of….
Thanks once again for all your help and the really useful books. I hope you are managing to sell plenty to help out with your family finances. I will stay in touch and I look forward to your next article on your website.