Trying to figure out who to tip, how much and when is always a challenge when you’re in a foreign country. In Spain, waiters make a decent wage, and tipping is not as mandatory as it is in the U.S. or other countries. In fact, most Spaniards won’t leave a tip.
That surely doesn’t mean that tips are not welcome. In a city like Barcelona, filled with touristic places and many foreign residents, tipping is becoming a frequent practice and is a great way of showing gratitude for a service that you enjoyed, or appreciation for something you liked seeing. If you feel that someone has shown you an incredible day and offered you customer service that is worthy of notice, it would not be out of the ordinary to leave a tip of 10-15%.
If you still feel a bit insecure, we’ve prepared this guide of places to help you out when in Barcelona:
As we said before, waiters get a relatively decent salary. Usually here in Spain, when you’re going to tip a waiter it is because the service they provided was excellent. If you’re content with the service, the food or even the ambiance, a range between 7% and 10% of the bill is usually left. If you’re going to eat in more of an upscale restaurant, the range can go up to 15% of the bill; but really, it depends on how you feel the service was.
If you’re having a cup of coffee or a drink, the norm would be to round up to the nearest euro or leave some spare change. If you are happy with the service provided, even if it was only to give you a glass of wine, you could leave up to €1, but it’s not necessary.
Don’t stress yourself out with this. Bellmen are usually happy with whatever you can give them. Tipping in hotels is generally universal. One Euro per luggage would be enough.
This really depends on where you’re going. If your destination is within the city, most locals round up or just leave from 10 to 20 cents; not more than 50 cents. If you’re going to or from the airport, leaving one or two euros is good enough. Note: make sure to pay attention when you’re riding in a taxi, some drivers will want to take advantage of the situation, if you feel cheated don’t leave anything.
It is usual to tip tour guides a bit above the average of the national norm. We recommend around 10%, but if you were really shown an awesome day, it is up to you!
In the end, it is not worth stressing over when you come to Catalonia because locals don’t make a big deal about tipping. But, we understand wanting to leave a little something when shown great service, hopefully, these insights will help you for your next visit!
If you want to try actually applying these tips you can hop on one of our Private Tours in Barcelona, that will take you on an exciting gourmet journey through the city!