Tipping in most cultures is a sign of respect and appreciation to the person who served and helped you, but do you get customs like tipping in Bali?
Tipping serves as an incentive for service industry workers to provide attentive and high-quality service. Workers will be more motivated to perform well because their income can grow through tips.
In Indonesia their lifestyle is a little different, the Balinese people are more relaxed and focus on getting the job done rather than increasing the hours and working overtime.
Tipping isn’t required, but it definitely is appreciated. Any service, a small tip of thanks, can go a long way.
If the service wasn’t good, you have every right not to give a little extra, but otherwise, showing how grateful you are to someone not expecting it is a polite gesture and reminds others they are doing a great job.
While tipping is appreciated, it should be done with respect and consideration for local customs. It’s also important to be mindful of your budget and tip accordingly.
In case you need help deciding whether to tip in a particular situation, you can either ask a local for guidance or checkout these tipping guides for popular countries around the world.
Below are a couple of Bali tips for first-timers that will inform you on how to tip locals in their different industries, what to look out for and how much it will cost you overall.
Plan your trip?
Avoid hidden fees in the exchange rate while withdrawing from millions of ATMs abroad, paying in restaurants and shops, and buying your accommodation and flights using the Wise Card. You can hold up to 40+ currencies at once to spend in in over 150 countries, and convert them in real time with the free Wise app.
Need help planning your trip from start to finish? Check out these helpful links:
- Cheap flights
- Savings on accommodation from hostels to luxury hotels
- Affordable car rental options
- Affordable sightseeing tours and day trips
- Travel Adapter – All in one so you don’t have to carry a bunch around
This post contains some affiliate links for your convenience. Click here to read my full disclosure policy.
Are you expected to tip in Bali?
There is a significant tipping culture in Bali, but it isn’t customary; however, showing gratitude with an extra set of coins can improve your whole experience since you are giving that little bit more. You may also find that if you have tipped before, you can expect an even higher form of service.
At the end of the day, your generosity can go a long way and every little bit counts.
What’s the easiest way to give a tip in Bali?
It is known that certain places find it offensive to tip (like Japan, China and Korea) and figuring out the best way to do it discreetly can be difficult. Luckily we have you covered and can offer you the best Bali tipping guidelines.
The easiest way to give a tip, like in many other places, is to provide cash directly to the person you wish to tip. You can do so in a couple of different ways;
- If you prefer a more discreet way to give a tip, you can use a small envelope or folded piece of paper to enclose the cash and hand it over.
- It’s a nice gesture to express your gratitude verbally, along with the tip. A simple “Terima kasih” (thank you) in Bahasa Indonesia or a smile can go a long way in showing your appreciation.
- Regarding hotels and guesthouses, you can leave the money in a prominent place in your hotel room with a note indicating that this is for the staff.
- Keep a supply of small change and small bills in a separate wallet or pocket for easy access when you want to give tips or access any loose change.
- While tipping is appreciated, it’s a good practice to be discreet about it, especially in public places, to avoid drawing unnecessary attention.
In some upscale restaurants and hotels, adding a tip to your credit card bill may be possible. However, it’s still customary to leave a small cash tip for the service staff, who may still need to receive a share of credit card tips.
When and How Much to Tip in Bali?
Knowing when to leave gratuity for each industry, whether it’s a large or small tip, can vary. Still, in most cases, the best time to tip anyone would be after they have provided the service. This way, you can be sure you are given the best value for your time and money.
Deciding how much to tip in Bali depends on the service, the effort and yourself. All hotels and most restaurants have a 17% or 21% tax and service charge included in your bill, so it is up to you whether to add any extra tip. Most places will expect a 10% – 20% tip.
Below we have gone into more detail about how much you should tip in each industry and situation, along with when is the best time to tip and why.
Can I tip in USD in Bali?
While the official currency is the Indonesian Rupiah (IDR), when it comes to tipping in Bali, most local businesses would prefer their currency.
In contrast, others in more touristy areas may accept US dollars (USD), especially at hotels, upscale restaurants, and tourist-oriented establishments.
However, it’s generally more convenient and appreciated to tip in the local currency, IDR, as it avoids potential confusion and ensures the tip reaches the intended recipient without any conversion issues. It is always best to ask what they prefer when the opportunity arises.
What Is A Reasonable Tip In Bali
It’s essential to use your discretion when tipping and consider the level of service and your satisfaction. While these guidelines provide a general idea of reasonable tips, there are no strict rules, and tipping should be a gesture of appreciation:
Taxi & Uber Drivers
Tipping practices for taxi drivers and Uber in Bali can vary, and tipping is not mandatory.
- The simplest way to tip is to round up the fare to the nearest convenient amount. For example, if the fare is 75,000 IDR, you can round it up to 80,000 IDR or 100,000 IDR. If you prefer to tip in cash, you can leave them some change; a few thousand is often appreciated for shorter rides.
- When deciding how much to tip a taxi driver in Bali, you can also calculate the tip as a percentage of the total fare. Around 10% of the fare is considered a reasonable tip for good service. Remember the length of the journey and the level of service provided when determining the tip amount..
- Use ride-sharing apps like Uber (or similar local apps). You can add a tip within the app, making it a convenient way of tipping drivers in Bali and ensuring they get it immediately.
Tour Guides & Operators
For half-day tours (approximately 4-6 hours), it’s common to tip around 50,000 to 100,000 IDR per person. For full-day tours (about 8-10 hours or more), consider a tip of 100,000 to 200,000 IDR per person.
- If you’re on a group tour with a tour guide, it’s common to pool tips with the other participants and give a lump sum to the directory.
- The tip amount can be higher for private tours where you have exclusive access to the guide’s services. Consider tipping around 200,000 to 300,000 IDR per person for a full-day private tour.
Consider a higher tip if the guide went above and beyond to make your experience enjoyable and informative.
Especially if the tour guide or operator provides additional services, such as arranging transportation, making reservations, or offering valuable insights. In that case, add a little extra.
Spa & Wellness Places:
High-end wellness places won’t expect a tip, but your beach-front favourite spa corner will most likely really appreciate one, so how much to tip in Bali for a massage?
- You must tip the therapist or practitioner if you enjoyed the service for spa treatments such as massages, facials, and body scrubs. A 10-20% tip of the service cost is considered reasonable.
- If you book a spa package that includes multiple treatments or services, you can calculate the tip based on the total cost of the box.
- For services at hair and nail salons, such as haircuts, styling, or manicures/pedicures, you can tip the service provider based on your satisfaction. A tip of 10-15% of the service cost is customary.
- If you’re part of a group booking at a spa or wellness centre, inquire whether a service charge has already been included in the bill.
Tipping hotel staff in Bali is customary and appreciated as it recognizes the efforts of the team who contribute to your comfortable stay, but how much do you tip a hotel in Bali?
Certain services require a higher tip than others since their service requires more effort or is higher, so how much do you tip a butler in Bali? What about a receptionist or a porter?
- It is customary when the hotel staff assists you with your luggage, bellhops or porters. A tip of around 5,000 to 10,000 IDR per bag is typical.
- Leaving something extra for housekeeping is common, especially if you’re satisfied with the cleaning and service. A tip of around 10,000 to 20,000 IDR per day is considered reasonable.
- A tip is appreciated if the concierge assists you with arranging tours, transportation, or reservations. You can base it on the level of assistance provided, with around 10,000 to 20,000 IDR being a typical amount.
- Tipping reception staff is uncommon, but you can offer a small tip for an excellent overall experience.
- If you dine at the hotel’s restaurant and the service charge is not included in the bill, consider leaving a tip of around 10% of the bill.
Cafes, Restaurants & Bars
Like the rest of the world, tipping in restaurants and bars is standard and a great way to show appreciation!
- Tipping is less common in smaller cafes than upscale restaurants, but it’s still appreciated. You can round up the bill to the nearest convenient amount or leave some small change.
- Tipping bartenders is customary, especially if they provide good service or craft special drinks. A tip of 10,000 to 20,000 IDR per drink or round is typical.
- Tipping is unique for street food vendors and small local stalls, as prices are typically fixed and lower than in restaurants.
- If you’re dining with a group, check the bill for any service charge that may have been added. You can collectively decide the tip amount based on the group’s consensus.
- In restaurants, it is common to leave a tip of around 10% of the total bill, depending on whether the service charge is included. Check your bill to see if a service charge has been added. You can round up the bill if the service charge is not included.
Tipping for food delivery in Bali is appreciated but only sometimes expected. The practice of tipping food delivery drivers can vary, and it often depends on the level of service and your enjoyment.
- For smaller food deliveries, such as single meals or small orders, rounding up the bill or leaving some small change as a tip is accepted, aiming around 10,000 to 20,000 IDR is reasonable.
- Suppose you’re placing a larger order for a group or a substantial meal. Consider a slightly higher but reasonable tip, such as 10% of the total bill.
- Tipping should reflect the quality of the service provided. A tip is more appropriate if the delivery is efficient, the food is well-prepared, and the driver is courteous.
- It’s convenient to tip in cash directly to the delivery driver, or if you use an app, you can list now through the app.
Street Vendors & Markets
Tipping at street vendors and markets isn’t a common practice since prices are fixed with the possibility of bargaining. Tipping is not expected, but it’s appreciated if you feel that the vendor has provided excellent service or if you’ve had a particularly positive interaction.
If you want to tip a street vendor or market seller, you can do so by rounding up the payment to the nearest convenient amount. For example, if an item costs 15,000 IDR, you can round it up to 20,000 IDR as a tip.
In markets and with street vendors, bargaining over prices is the usual. While tipping is appreciated, remember that haggling over the initial cost is a more prevalent aspect of transactions in these settings.
Airport & Hotel Porters
Tipping airport and hotel porters in Bali is a well-known practice for travellers, as it acknowledges their assistance in handling your luggage and making your arrival or departure a smoother experience.
- When you arrive at the airport, especially if you have multiple bags, it’s common to use the services of a porter. A tip of around 10,000 to 20,000 IDR per bag is typical.
- Porters may assist you with your luggage at hotels upon check-in and check-out. A tip of around 10,000 to 20,000 IDR per bag is customary. You can also round up the total tip amount for all bags if you have several.
Tipping, in general, whether you are expected to or not, is a form of good practice wherever you go for showing your appreciation and gratitude to the server or team.
The hospitality game is always tricky; you never know how far your tip can go for someone else. Additionally, it keeps service providers motivated and dedicated to their jobs and workflow!
On the other hand, it is essential to research before arriving anywhere because, surprisingly, you do get countries with different cultures that deem tipping disrespectful. The last thing anyone wants to do is act with good intentions but offend them instead.