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Almost one in five Britons never leave a tip in the UK, or abroad

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New research by comparethemarket.com unveiled Brits’ attitudes towards tipping, if and when they tip, and the average amount they gift. Britons are most likely to gift a higher amount if they’ve had a good experience, but leave the least to someone delivering their takeaway.

With summer comes travel and new encounters, so to determine Brits’ attitudes towards gifting money if they’ve had an enjoyable experience, comparethemarket.com1 has revealed if and when people leave a tip and the average amount they gift.

Tipping someone that has delivered a good service shows a level of gratitude. However, whilst almost two-thirds (60%) of Britons will happily leave a tip when in the UK or abroad, almost one in five (19%) won’t leave a tip at all, no matter their destination.

For the Britons that leave a tip wherever, plus the one in ten (10%) that only tip in the UK, here’s how much they gift:

Transaction

Average tip amount

If they’ve had a good experience e.g., after staying in a hotel or visiting a new place

£5.14

At a restaurant/bar as a thank you to the worker

£4.64

If someone has done a good job e.g., a mechanic, hairdresser, or window cleaner

£4.08

If someone has helped with their luggage if staying at a hotel

£3.17

To a taxi driver after a journey

£2.76

To a delivery driver e.g., who has delivered their takeaway

£2.67

A good experience tops the list, showcasing that Brits will happily tip if they’ve had a pleasant encounter. However, they’re less likely to gift a large amount for a delivery.

Delving further into how tip preferences differ across the UK, a higher percentage of Birmingham residents (34%) state they don’t tip in the UK, or abroad than any other city, followed by Bristol (33%). However, it’s Belfast where a large number of residents do tip no matter their location (77%) followed by Glasgow (73%).

Not only that, but if we analyse the demographical split, it’s Gen Z* (71%) that will happily gift money wherever they go, over any other age group.

Looking at how Brits tip when on holiday, they’re most likely to gift money as a thank you to the waiter or the restaurant/bar after eating or drinking out (83%). Other reasons to tip whilst abroad include after using a local taxi or bus (48%) or to someone that has helped with their luggage or directions (47%).

When asked whether they’d avoid visiting certain countries due to high expectations when it comes to tipping, over two-thirds (67%) expressed that this wouldn’t put them off. But, one in six (15%) won’t travel to the USA or Brazil and one in ten (10%) will avoid the Middle East.

Now whilst the research may give the impression that a large percentage of Britons are a pretty giving bunch, why do 19% of us decide against tipping in the UK, and abroad?

The top reason is that they have a personal budget for non-necessities which tips don’t fall into (39%). Over a third (35%) say it’s because workers are already getting paid, so they don’t believe they should also give them money, whilst over one in five (22%) think people expect a tip, which makes them feel uncomfortable.

No matter where you’re visiting, if you’re travelling with a large amount of money for tips or other activities, it’s important that you’re fully insured.

Josh Daniels, head of travel at comparethemarket.com, says: “A typical travel insurance policy will cover you against theft of both your luggage and personal belongings on the way to your destination, as well as when you’re out and about on holiday. You must check out the limit of the amount you can claim for, should the worse happen, as this varies among providers and will ensure you’re covered should the worse happen.”

 


1 Survey of 1,000 UK adults undertaken in July 2021 by TLF.

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