Should you tip and is tipping 20% regarded as an appropriate amount to tip?
The rule of thumb is tipping at Venice is optional and only required with excellent service. There are no local tipping customs and no one in Venice can fault you for not tipping or recommended appropriate amount to tip.
Restaurants and Cafes: In Venice, a service charge (coperto) is often included in the bill. However, it is customary to round up the bill or leave a small tip of about 5-10% if the service charge is not included. If you receive exceptional service or want to show appreciation, you can leave a more substantial tip.
Bars: When enjoying a drink at a bar, rounding up the bill to the nearest euro is a common practice. If the bartender provides table service or you order something more complex, a small tip is appreciated.
Hotels: Tipping hotel staff is not obligatory, but it is customary to tip porters who help with your luggage (typically 1-2 euros per bag). Housekeepers can be tipped as well, with a few euros left in your hotel room upon checkout.
Tour Guides: If you take guided tours in Venice, consider tipping the guide if they provided an excellent experience. A tip of around 10% of the tour cost is a good guideline.
Water Taxis and Gondola Rides: Tipping for water transportation can vary. For water taxis, rounding up the fare is common. For gondola rides, it's customary to negotiate the price beforehand, and if you're happy with the experience, you can round up or add a little extra for the gondolier.
Public Transportation: Tipping on public transportation like vaporettos (water buses) is not expected.
Restroom Attendants: In some public restrooms, there may be attendants who provide services like handing you towels or maintaining cleanliness. You can leave a small tip, usually 50 cents to 1 euro.
Taxis: Tipping taxi drivers is not mandatory, but it's courteous to round up the fare to the nearest euro or add a small amount as a tip if you were pleased with the service.
There are also Coperto or Cover Charge and coperto isn't considered tipping. It is meant to cover the charge of the food you are using like bread, oil, or salt. The rate is also per person and around 1-3 euros per person.
Pane or Bread Charge: Pane means bread and you are expected to pay 1 to 1.50 per person for bread. You can reject the bread if you really don't want to pay this?
Tips are called Servizio and usually when you go to a restaurant in a group of 8 or more people. So if you see servizio, it is perfectly fine not to tip extra. What about cases where there is no servizio charge?
Service Charge in Venice Is Not Tipping
Tipping in Venice is not compulsory and only necessary to appreciate a job well done either in kind or with extra cash. One common confusion is that you paid for tipping by paying the service charge as a % of the total bill. Below is one such story:
Recently, we visited a restaurant in Venice that had a "service charge" of 12%. I left four euro on the table, after a 100 euro in total bill. We liked the place, so we returned a few days later. At a nearby table, a diner questioned the 12% service charge; the waiter replied that the charge goes to the management, not the waiter. I left the same four euro. (tripadvisor.com)
Be aware that in Italy, tipping is referred to as a bonus, so the amount always reflects the level of service render. There is no standard rule guiding tipping in Italy. You are solely responsible for what you want to give out per time in relation to the level of service offered to you.
If you are traveling on a budget, you can just reciprocate by giving a little something like a bright smile and thanking the person.
If you insist on finding a fair amount to tip, below are the recommendation based on the different areas you need to tip in Venice.
Taxis Drivers or Airport Transfer
It is easy to forget tipping the taxi driver or airport transfer. As you know a tip is not often expected, but it is well appreciated. It shows how grateful you are for the services offered.
For example, helping to unload/load your heavy pieces of luggage and offering some local tips. When you enter a taxi or a cab or airport transfer, round the total fare to the nearest Euro to the driver and he will feel very grateful to you. It is the right and normal thing to do when you are satisfied.
Depending on how well the cleaner maintains and cleans your home. If he or she has done exceptionally well, you can appreciate their job by given tips. The tip does not have to be big, with 1 Euro too, they will be very happy that their job is acknowledged.
You can also tip room service or the valet 1 Euro unless you're staying in a 5-star expensive hotel, where these tip 2 Euros. It is reasonable to tip the doorman 1 Euro for calling a taxi for you and bellboys 3 - 4 Euros for taking your bags to the room.
I recommend not tipping tour guides or local guides since they probably understand. They usually don't expect it and will be perfectly fine to provide excellent services without the tip.
Remember that different countries have different cultures. Tipping in Italy is optional.
A tip in Italy is not expected, but it is well appreciated in recognition of service render.
Tipping in Italy is just a form of thank you for a job well done by the person. Tipping everyone else if you can afford is a great way to stay awesome while enjoying your trip. Like your porter who helps you to carry your luggage, from the hotel to the cab and down to the airport. A tip should be within your means and can be a token amount like rounding up to the nearest Euros.
The above list is my personal opinion of the amount you might want to tip in Italy.
If you have any tipping experience (good or bad), please share with us your experiences in the comments below.