Are you wondering: do you tip in Amsterdam? And if so, how much?
The short answer is yes, tipping in Amsterdam is a thing, but the approach by Dutch people is a little different from other places, like the USA.
Are you in a hurry? I created this handy Amsterdam tip calculator for you, where you can calculate the correct tip amount for the most crucial tipping situations.
But if you have a few extra minutes, read this guide for a better explanation and context.
As a local Dutchman, born and raised in the Netherlands, I know the correct etiquette in this country.
My childhood made me even more familiar with Dutch tipping customs. My father was a low-paid driver. The tips he received decided whether we could do fun things.
In this article, I will dive into these questions: where, when, and how much to tip in 2023? And do you need to tip?
I’ll also touch on some cultural aspects and provide some handy Dutch phrases to know.
It’s important to remember that tipping in the Netherlands is seen differently here than in the USA. Understanding these differences will save you from awkward moments and money.
So, let’s dive in and explore Dutch tipping culture together!
Table of Contents
Where to Tip in Amsterdam and How Much
When taking a trip to Amsterdam, you’ll want to know where to tip. How much you should give? This is always one of the most confusing parts of traveling abroad, as tipping etiquette varies in different countries, right?
With this tipping guide, you can tip like a local when visiting Amsterdam.
It’s also good to know that these are not rigid rules, but guidelines based on standard practices and my local experience.
Tipping in Restaurants
Tipping in Amsterdam restaurants is not required due to higher wages for hospitality workers in the Netherlands. It’s quite a bit above minimum wage. And that is already higher than in most other countries.
Leaving a few euros is still customary.
A tip of 5-10% of the bill is standard. I tip around €2-3 for bills up to €50, €5 for bills up to €100, and €10 for bills over €100.
I usually round up my bill with these tips in mind. For instance, a bill of €88.80 could be rounded up to €95.
This applies to Amsterdam restaurants and elsewhere in the country.
Make it easy for yourself, and use my convenient tipping calculator below.
Bars in Amsterdam
Unlike in the US, you don’t tip for every drink. If you receive table service, tip at the end of the evening (similar to restaurant tipping).
If you order at the bar, look for a tip jar and add a few euros per person for the evening.
Cafes in Amsterdam
A common practice is to leave a small tip when you have a coffee at a café. It’s customary to round up the bill to the nearest euro or half euro, but more than €0.20.
For instance, if two coffees cost €5.50, I would pay €6. If the total is €5.80, I would pay €6.50.
This is where it gets personal for me. My father was a taxi driver, and I can tell you they are among the lowest-paid workers in the Netherlands.
Even though your taxi bill might seem high, the driver doesn’t see much of that. I urge you not to skimp on tipping taxi drivers in Amsterdam, even when you pay by card.
Tip your driver a standard tip of 10% of the final price, and 15-20% if the driver was extra helpful and friendly.
One exception to the rule: If the driver takes a longer route without a good reason, you don’t tip him or her, and you should call them out or report them (track, for example, with Google Maps). Of course, if there is a road blockage of any sort that is not their fault. And sometimes a longer route is faster, but they should ask you first.
Use my tipping tool below to find out the amount to tip your taxi driver.
Tipping in Amsterdam Hotels
This is one area where the Netherlands differs from the US. In the Netherlands, it’s not expected to tip hotel staff.
But a few euros is a nice gesture if you receive exceptional service. Leave a note with your tip if it’s meant for housekeeping staff to clarify it’s a tip.
Hotel porters are not found at many hotels in Amsterdam and elsewhere in the country, but if you’re assisted by one in a more upscale hotel, leave about one euro per bag. If they’re heavy, leave a bit more.
Tipping the hotel concierge is discretionary. You don’t have to, but consider leaving something if their service was exceptional (when they secured some hard-to-find tickets, for example).
It’s hard to put a number on this one because it depends on how exceptional the service was and how much that was worth to you.
Front desk staff, you don’t tip as a general rule, but again, if you received great service or they gave you an amazing upgrade, you may want to tip. Ask first if it’s ok. It isn’t always.
Tour Guides in Amsterdam
Tipping tour guides can be tricky. While not obligatory, operators somewhat expect tips.
By not tipping, it can be awkward. Guides earn a regular salary, so don’t feel pressured (except for free tours).
My approach varies for different types of tours. Here’s my rundown:
- Short group tours (like a canal cruise or hop-on hop-off bus tour in Amsterdam): If the commentary is automated, I don’t tip even though they might ask for a tip. If it was live commentary and good, I leave a small tip, usually €2 per person.
- Walking tours: The guides rely on tips for free walking tours, so I’m generous if the tour is free and enjoyable; typically, €10-€15 per person is a good amount. You can tip less when you’re on a paid group walking tour. If I had a good time, I would still give €2.50 per person. For a private walking tour, you usually tip depending on the amount paid. 10% of the tour price (up to €20) is a good tip when the guide is friendly and entertaining.
- Day trips: I’d leave €5 per person for group tours, for example, if you’re on a tour bus to the Windmills. (PS: only if the guide gave you a wonderful experience.) If you’re on a private day tour, I’d tip 10% of the amount paid (up to €50) if the guide provided outstanding service.
My calculator can give you the correct amount based on the number of people in your party and the type of tour you take. Please do try it out.
Hairdresser or SPA
In the Netherlands, tipping at a hairdresser or at the spa is not customary. Prices include all service charges, and workers are well-paid. If you received exceptional service, you can offer a tip but don’t be surprised if it’s declined.
Here’s a trend from the USA that’s made its way to Amsterdam: tip jars at self-service restaurant cash registers. As a Dutchman, I find this odd as there’s no service to reward. My advice? Ignore the jar.
Tipping Calculator – How Much To Tip In Amsterdam
All the information above is a lot to take in. In case you’re still wondering how much to tip in Amsterdam, I’ve created an Amsterdam tipping calculator for you. It includes:
- Calculators for restaurants, cafes, bars, and taxis. Just input your bill amount to get the recommended tip.
- A section for tours. Select your tour type, input your details, and it will suggest the tip amount.
Find A Place To Stay In Amsterdam
Update your (intended) travel dates for accurate prices. TIP: Zoom out on the map (-) in the bottom right corner. This will show more options and availability.
Handy Dutch Phrases for Tipping in the Netherlands
Learning a few local phrases can significantly improve your travel experience and will be appreciated by the locals. Here are some Dutch phrases that might come in handy:
|Can I have the bill?||Mag ik de rekening?|
|Keep the change.||Laat het wisselgeld maar zitten.|
|Can I tip with a card?||Kan ik ook een fooi geven met mijn bankpas?|
|This tip is for you.||Deze fooi is voor jou.|
|Do you accept tips?||Accepteer je fooi?|
|Thank you for the excellent service.||Dank je voor de goede service.|
Don’t worry about perfect pronunciation; just trying will be appreciated. Remember, the Dutch are quite proficient in English, so returning to English is easy and perfectly acceptable.
Are you curious about more Dutch phrases, you most likely will enjoy my post: “Hello in Dutch and 51 other Dutch phrases.”
Frequently Asked Questions about Tipping Etiquette
Below are some of the most common questions I’ve received from visitors:
Can I tip with my bank card/credit card?
Yes, you typically can. But let the server know how much you’d like to add to your bill before they enter the amount in the machine. It’s not possible to write the tip amount down on the receipt. In some instances, this might not be possible at all. If that’s the case, be prepared with some coins, or small bills to give a tip in cash separate from your card payment.
Can restaurants add a service charge to the bill?
No, they can not. In the Netherlands, service charges have been included in the bill since the 1970s. If you see a service charge added to your bill, consider it a red flag—a tourist trap. Don’t hesitate to call them out and ask for the charge removed. Don’t pay it, and certainly don’t tip in such situations. Pay only the amount listed on the menu without extras. Taxes are also always included in the price.
Should I tip when I receive bad service?
You should not tip when you receive bad service in the Netherlands. Tips are genuinely optional. You should not feel bad that the staff member doesn’t make money. Waiters get paid well in the Netherlands without tips. It should only be given for good service. If that wasn’t the case, then don’t tip. Locals do the same.
More Helpful content
It’s important to remember that tipping here is not the same as in the USA. Service staff in the Netherlands receive much better pay than elsewhere. Thus, tips can be lower and should only be given for good service.
Adapting to this concept might feel weird, but you shouldn’t feel guilty for giving less when you’re here.
However, while tips are not mandatory, they are still customary to show appreciation for good service. Rewarding service with a gratuity will most likely improve your experience.
Everybody appreciates recognition for their efforts, just like anywhere. Don’t take today’s advice as a free pass not to give anything.
Use the guidelines provided in this article as a reference point for when and how much to tip in Amsterdam and beyond because this advice is also valid beyond the capital.
At the end of the day, these are just guidelines. Do what feels right for you because every situation is unique. If you had a fantastic experience and want to give more, do! That’s the idea of rewarding good service. It should be a free choice and not a calculation.
If you are in doubt or have questions, please ask in the comments below. As a local Dutchman, I’ll happily provide an answer in the correct context.
I’d love to hear your thoughts: Share your thoughts in the comments below, and let’s start a conversation 💬.
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