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To Tip Or Not To Tip? Tipping In Thailand Guide

To Tip Or Not To Tip? Tipping In Thailand Guide

When traveling abroad, it’s always difficult to understand the tipping culture in that country. Tipping in Thailand is no different. When should you tip in Thailand? Are you tipping enough in Thailand?

Our first trip was on our Thailand honeymoon, and since then we have lived in Thailand for the past three years. We’ve put together a guide to tipping in Thailand to help you out.

Tipping In Thailand

tipping in thailand - how much and who to tip in Thailand

This tipping in Thailand guide is intended for tourists in Thailand, as it is not common for local Thais to tip. Even though tipping in Thailand is becoming more and more common.

Tipping in Thailand is not mandatory but always appreciated. Europeans will read this and tell us we are crazy for tipping this much, and Americans will feel guilty for tipping this little. However, this is what is generally accepted for tipping in Thailand.

As a tourist in Thailand, please realize how little daily wages most locals are paid. The average Thai wage is less than 9,000 baht a month ($300 USD). That extra 20 baht tip may be nothing to you but can really add up to the local server.

Must Read: Thailand Travel Tips To Know

Pad Ka Prao stir fried holy basic authentic Thai food in Thailand

Sit Down Restaurants

Tipping roughly 10% of the bill is a good tip, and rounding up or down. Similar to what you would do at home. If eating at a fancier restaurant and the bill is higher, you can ignore the 10% rule and give it based on how the experience was with a minimum of 100 baht tip. Always check the bill and see if a service charge was added. If a service charge was added, there is no need to tip.

When tipping in a sit-down restaurant, it isn’t a straight percentage of the check. Also, look at the cost of the meal and the service. Make sure to read our what to eat in Bangkok article for authentic Thai dishes to try.

If you had a not-so-good waiter at home, would you tip? Yes, you probably would tip, but you’d just tip less. If you had an amazing server, you’d tip a little extra. And if you had a terrible server and dining experience, you probably wouldn’t tip. The same goes for tipping in Thailand at restaurants.

Suggested Tip:

  • 100 baht bill = 10-20 baht tip
  • 177 baht bill= 23 baht tip, leave all the change and round up
  • 830 baht bill= 70-100 baht tip
  • 1900 baht bill= 150 baht tip
Thai Woman making Phad Thai on the strrets of Bangkok - Must Try Street food

Thailand Street Food Vendor

It is not common to tip street food vendors. If you do tip, they will likely be confused and try to return what they see as an overpayment. Most street food items are fixed and have clearly labeled prices; no tips are required.

It is not acceptable to barter on the price of food. If you happen to see a tip jar at a street food stall and it was really tasty throw in a few baht coins.

Suggested tip: None

Related Article: Street Food Safety Guide

Ultimate Koh Lipe Thailand Travel Guide - Night Life Koh Lipe

Tipping At Bars

How much to tip in Thailand at a bar really varies from bar to bar. If it is a bar where you go up to the bar and order your own drinks, no tip is required.

If you are at a beach bar all day in Koh Lipe you may want to tip 10 baht on the first drink so that the waiter comes and checks on you later. If they don’t come back to check on you then don’t tip on the next drink. If you have been sitting at the bar for a few hours chatting with the bartender and having a good time, tip 60 baht or so.

Always check the bill and see if a service charge was added, if a service charge was added no need to tip. It is common for the sky bars in Bangkok to charge a service charge, so do not tip unless it was exceptional service and you want to leave an additional tip.

Suggested Tip: 10 baht for 2 drinks

Related Article: Red Sky Bar Bangkok

two iced coffees on a table

Fast Food Restaurants/Coffee Shops

No need to tip at fast-food restaurants or coffee shops like KFC, McDonald’s, Starbucks, Tom Tom’s, etc. If a server doesn’t come to your table, there is no need to leave a tip.

Suggested Tip: None

Taxis in Thailand

Before entering a taxi in Thailand, make sure to agree on a price in advance or make sure it will be a metered fare. It is common to round up the fare to the nearest bill and leave the change as a tip while taking a taxi in Thailand.

Suggested Tip: 111 baht fare= 9 baht tip

Related Article: 3 Days In Bangkok

Uber/Grab Taxi In Thailand

UPDATE: Uber is rarely in Thailand, if at all. Thailand has something similar called Grab Taxi. Just download the Grab Taxi app. It works just like Uber. You mark your pickup and drop off addresses, and it tells you an estimate of the fare, and you can pay via the app with your credit card. We now typically use Grab if we are going somewhere complicated or aren’t near any taxis.

Uber/Grab Taxi is in Thailand and our preferred mode of transport in Thailand. Uber/Grab taxi in Bangkok is super easy and cheap. We have used Uber & Grab Taxi in Bangkok and Chiang Mai dozens of times. It’s great as you don’t have to agree on a price or try and communicate where you are going.

We asked several ex-pats living in Bangkok if they tip Uber drivers, and they said yes, on average, at least 10 baht. For example, an 11 km ride that takes 23 minutes costs only 90 baht. Uber takes a large amount of your fare, and the drivers will appreciate any tips.

Suggested Tip: 10 baht minimum (depending on distance)

tipping in Thailand Guide - What to tip a tuk tuk driver in Bangkok

Tuk Tuk Drivers

Always negotiate the price before hiring a tuk-tuk. In Bangkok and other tourist cities, some level of bartering is expected over the fare. Tuk-tuk drivers in Bangkok, especially, are known for their scams of overcharging or bringing you to shops where they will get a commission. We try to avoid using tuk-tuks if possible.

For tuk-tuk drivers in Thailand, only pay the price agreed upon for the ride tipping is not expected.

Suggested Tip: None

Related Article: Best Tuk Tuk Driver In Siem Reap

Balinese Massage in Bali

Thai Massage

After a relaxing massage wouldn’t you feel guilty not tipping? Being a masseuse is a hard job, and it doesn’t pay well. Many masseuses get only a small fraction of what you pay for a massage. I try to tip at least 15%. Try to give it directly to the masseuse to ensure it goes to the correct person. One of our favorite things to do in Thailand on a rainy day is get a massage or three.

Suggested Tip:

  • 150 baht massage = 20-50 baht tip
  • 300 baht massage = 50-100 baht tip


If you are staying in a nicer Bangkok hotel, they will most likely bring your luggage to your room. How much you should tip depends on how much baht you have. I personally don’t like tipping coins, so typically, my tips will be 20 baht, 50 baht, or 100 baht.

There is no tipping in Thailand general rule, but you will notice the bellboys hang around the door when exiting. They will graciously accept a tip.

Suggested Tip:

  • 1 bag= 20 baht
  • several bags= 50 baht

Related Article: Where To Stay In Bangkok 

Westin heavenly bed at the Westin Grande Sukhumvit Bangkok

Tipping Housekeeping in Thailand Hotels

This one can be tricky. Tipping maids in Thailand is common in higher-end hotels. You will notice this when you see a tip envelope in your room. Place your tip in the envelope for the maid. Tips are not common if you are staying at a 3-star hotel or less.

If there is no envelope the maid might not know the money left in the room is a tip and not take it. This may sound strange, but if you left a 50 baht bill on the bed, the maid might move it to the desk, assuming you left it behind. This has happened to us. The best for tipping housekeeping in Thailand is to literally hand it to them or make it super obvious that it’s a tip. A thank you note with the money on top, etc.

Suggested Tip:

  • 1 night = 50 baht
  • 3 nights= 100 baht

Related Article: Checking Into The W Bangkok

Adam getting his first tattoo by a monk in Thailand

Thailand Tattoo Artist

Getting a tattoo in Thailand is a souvenir that will be with you forever. Even better would be getting a Sak Yant tattoo, a traditional Thai tattoo. If the tattoo artist draws you up a custom design that you totally love, show him your appreciation with a tip, usually 10%, or at your discretion.

Suggested Tip:

  • 2,000 baht tattoo = 200 baht tip
  • 4,000 baht tattoo = 300 baht tip

Hair Stylists

As a general rule of thumb, 10% is a good tip for a hairstylist. Higher-end hair salons in Thailand will most likely have a tip jar at the checkout, even though I always prefer to hand my tip directly to the person helping me.

If visiting a local Thai hair salon, there is no need to tip, but a 20-baht tip would be nice. I personally go to an Aveda salon in Chiang Mai that is very pricey, and I am sure every customer tips something.

Suggested Tip:

  • 200 baht appointment = 20 baht tip
  • 500 baht appointment = 50 baht tip
  • 3,000 baht appointment = 200 baht tip
private food tour in Bangkok women in market

Tour Guide

Every tour is different, and the tips will vary from tour to tour. We’ve had amazing tours in Bangkok, where our guides went out of their way to make sure we had a great time. Several of our tour guides showed us things we would have never found on our own and gave local tips.  

We’ve also had some tours that were really boring. No matter what suggest tipping the tour guides something and a little more to the awesome guides.

Suggested Tip:

  • Half-day tour = 150+ baht
  • Full day tour = 300+ baht

Bathroom Attendants

Not every place will have bathroom attendants, but if you’re out at night, you’ll see them at some restaurants/bars. Also, note that it is common to pay to use the restrooms, usually 10 baht, and pay a few baht for some toilet paper. I usually carry a small Kleenex in my purse. You can purchase this from the ladies or right at 7-Eleven.

If you notice a tip basket and you see that an attendant is in the bathroom the whole time, then I’d tip them. Would you want to be stationed in the bathroom all night? If you visit the bathroom several times in the evening no need to tip every time.

Suggested tip

  • 10 baht if you didn’t pay to use the restroom
  • No tip if you had to pay to use the restroom

Knowing what to tip in Thailand or who to tip is frustrating. Hopefully, our tipping in Thailand guide has helped you figure out how much to tip in Thailand for all sorts of situations. We would love to hear how much you tip where you are from. Leave a comment below!

Additional Thailand Resources:

If you need any help finding accommodation in Koh Lipe, always check, as I have found them to have the best selection in Thailand.

If you are planning on doing some Thailand island hopping book your transport online here. Ferry schedules and bus schedules are all online and bookable.

For the cheapest airfare within Thailand and most of Southeast Asia, look for Air Asia.