Tipping in New Zealand – why don't we do it more often?

Close your eyes and imagine you’re at an Auckland hotel. You’ve just checked out, and a nice hotel employee piles your bags onto a trolley, takes them outside, waves over a taxi and helps you get your stuff into the car. Before you get in the taxi do you a) thank him sincerely and give him a smile, or b) slip a few bucks into his hand for his efforts?

Two recent events have brought tipping onto my radar. The first was our Travelbug survey in which we discovered that 85% of Kiwis don’t tip hotel staff. The second was my recent trip to Las Vegas where I was tipping willy-nilly and anyone who was even slightly helpful had money thrust at them. I think at one point I may have even tipped a guy who helped me fix my glasses.Big tip

In New Zealand, tipping simply isn’t habit. I think for a while, brochures even told tourists arriving into the country that tipping wasn’t required in New Zealand. But how common is it, and how common should it be? Read more…