Tipping in Mexico Guide | When and How Much to Tip in Mexico 

The question is: “how much should you tip in Mexico

When considering “how much do you tip in Mexico,” it’s essential to understand that tipping culture in Mexico is quite significant. The amount can vary depending on the region and the level of service, but tips greatly support locals in service industries.

In Mexico, tips contribute substantially to the incomes of workers like waiters, bartenders, hotel staff, and taxi drivers, especially as the minimum wage is relatively low.

Yucatan, Mexico - People swimming ni Ik Kil Cenote Yucatan Mexico North America

Budgeting for a trip is crucial, and this includes planning for tips. From my experience, not accounting for different tipping practices can impact your travel budget. Having worked in hospitality, I appreciate the impact of tips.

If you’re wondering about “tipping culture in Mexico” and “how much do you tip in Mexico,” I’ve put together a guide. It includes tipping advice for various services in Mexico, such as hotels, taxis, and deliveries, to help you navigate the local tipping etiquette effectively.

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Are you expected to tip in Mexico?

In most of Central and South America, it is customary to leave a tip and greatly appreciated. Surprisingly, some countries like Brazil have a pretty robust tipping culture, but do you tip in Mexico? 

Yes, tipping is generally expected in Mexico, and it’s considered a standard practice in various service-oriented industries.

While tipping is not mandatory, it is a part of the local culture, and service providers in Mexico often rely on tips to supplement their income. It is a way to show appreciation for good service and is a common practice among locals and tourists.

hands of a woman holding and counting mexican banknotes of twenty pesos

What’s the easiest way to give a tip in Mexico?

In Mexico, tipping practices are similar to those of their neighbouring countries, where the easiest way to give a tip is to use cash, as it’s widely accepted and preferred by service providers. Choosing how to tip in Mexico is up to you, but below are the different ways you can leave a gratuity:

  • Carry Cash: It’s a good idea to have a supply of small bills and coins in Mexican pesos with you. Many service providers may not have the means to process credit card tips, and cash is the most convenient.
  • Tip in Local Currency: When giving a tip, use Mexican pesos whenever possible. Tipping in foreign currency can confuse service staff, and exchange rates may not be favourable.
  • Use Small Change: Smaller bills and coins are preferable for tipping, as they are easier for service staff to handle. Keeping some small changes on hand for this purpose is a good practice.
  • Hand It Over Directly: When tipping in cash, you can tip the service provider with a polite “gracias” (thank you) or a smile to express your appreciation.
  • Check for Service Charges: A service charge may already be included in certain restaurants, especially in tourist areas. If this is the case, it’s only necessary to leave an additional tip if you want to acknowledge exceptional service.
  • Consider a Gratuity Envelope: Some hotels and upscale establishments provide gratuity envelopes in the room, allowing you to leave a tip for the housekeeping staff. You can place the tip inside the envelope and leave it in a visible location.
  • Mobile Payment Apps: Over the years, some establishments in Mexico have started accepting tips via mobile payment apps like PayPal or mobile wallets. 
women hands paying and receiving Mexican money

When and How Much to Tip in Mexico?

Knowing when to tip is pretty straightforward, giving a token of appreciation at the end of a service makes much more sense.

Knowing how much you should tip in Mexico can vary depending on the level of service you’ve received.

People working in restaurants, as tour guides, in wellness centres and taxi drivers all rely on a 10% – 20% amount of the final tip, whereas workers such as housekeepers, bellhops and bars expect a simple 10 – 20 pesos tip and possibly even more for complex cocktails or services. Although I would recommend tipping housekeeping more as they work really hard!

Read more: Itinerary for Tulum – 3 days

Can I tip in USD in Mexico?

In Mexico, it’s common to see tourists tipping in Mexico USD or Pesos, but a lot of places don’t accept USD because they prefer their own currency, Mexican pesos.

Using US dollars can cause confusion over exchange rates and might end up costing more. Smaller businesses and local vendors often don’t take US dollars, it’s easier for them to handle their own currency. Workers might not have easy access to exchange services, making US dollars super inconvenient.

Tipping with Mexican pesos is the usual way in Mexico. This makes things simpler and ensures your tip goes straight to the person providing the service.

Even in tourist areas or big cities where US dollars might be accepted, it’s better to ask the service provider if they’re okay with US dollars before you tip them that way.

A person holding several Mexican banknotes on top of American bills. Concept: Mexican Peso Exchange Rates

What Is A Reasonable Tip In Mexico

Around the world, a common tip is usually 10% of the bill or a few coins and small notes as a thank you for good service. The amount you tip in Mexico depends on the type of service and how happy you are with it. Sometimes a small tip is enough to show gratitude for extra effort.

When visiting Mexico, it’s a good idea to have at least 100 pesos in small change. This is handy for tipping locals who provide excellent service and contribute to a great experience.

How much to tip is up to you, and it varies. Below are some basic tips to guide you during your stay in Mexico. Remember, these are minimums – if you want to tip more, feel free to do so. It could really make someone’s day! Tipping is a big part of Mexican culture, and many people depend on it.

Mexican Pesos bank notes currency bills money background

Taxi & Uber Drivers

In Mexico, it’s usual to tip taxi and Uber drivers. Tipping shows gratitude for good service, like a polite, helpful driver who provides a safe and comfortable ride.

Tips are important for these drivers because they often rely on them to boost their income, especially since base fares can be low. A lot of tourists take fairly short trips to and from places so drivers don’t make a lot of money.

Here’s a simple guide on how much to tip:

  • For Taxi Drivers: A common tip is about 10-15% of the fare. If the fare is a uneven number, you can just round it up for convenience. For instance, if your fare is 90 pesos, you can round it up to 100 as a tip.
  • For Uber Drivers: Tipping is usually done through the Uber app after your ride. A tip of 10-15% of the fare is good for Uber drivers too. Keep in mind that these drives don’t always see the full tip, so if you have some loose cash, I’d recommend giving them a cash tip instead.

Tipping encourages drivers to be friendly, drive safely, and keep their cars clean, benefiting both you and the driver.

Typical pink taxis next to the National Palace in the historical center of Mexico City

Tour Guides & Operators

Tour guides play a key role in making your trip fun and sometimes educational, tipping them is a great way to show your appreciation.

They offer valuable insights and historical details that can really enhance your visit. They often go above and beyond to make sure you’re comfortable and happy during the tour.

Like many in the service industry, tour guides usually count on tips to boost their income, and your tip can make a big difference to them.

Here’s a brief guide on tipping tour guides:

  • For Guided Tours: A typical tip is about 10-15% of the tour’s cost is usually a good starting point. You might adjust this depending on the tour’s quality, length, and how satisfied you are.
  • For Group Tours: In group tours, it’s usual for everyone to contribute to a combined tip for the guide. Or you can tip the guide directly if you’ve had a good experience with them.
  • For Private Tours: When it comes to private tours, how much to tip is more flexible, but a 15-20% tip is generally really appreciated.
Tourists hear an explanation from their guide next to the Pyramid of Kukulkan at Chichen Itza

Spa & Wellness Places:

Tipping at spas and wellness centers in Mexico is a common, if you’ve had a good spa treatment or good service.

The staff in these places work extremely hard to give you top-quality service and a great experience. Tipping not only helps their income but also motivates them to keep providing high-standard of service.

Here’s a simple guide to tipping in these settings:

  • For Spa Services: When you get spa treatments like massages, facials, or other therapies, a tip of about 10-20% of the service cost is standard. The exact amount depends on how good the service was and how happy you are with it. Personally I prefer to tip the therapist directly.
  • For Salon Services: For salon services at a wellness facility, such as haircuts, manicures, or pedicures, a tip of 10-20% is suitable too.
On a beach in Cancun.Cancun, a Mexican city on the Yucatan Peninsula bordering the Caribbean Sea, is known for its beaches, numerous resorts and nightlife.

Hotel Staff

When staying at a resort in Mexico, it’s a kind gesture to tip the hotel and housekeeping staff. These hardworking individuals help make your stay comfortable and enjoyable.

Tipping shows your appreciation for their efforts and supports the hospitality sector. Tips are particularly important for staff in lower-paying roles, as they often depend on this extra income.

For figuring out how much to tip in Mexico resort or how much to tip in Cancun all inclusive, you’ll sometimes see a suggested tip amount on your final bill. If you wish to tip specific staff members, you can ask the reception for an envelope and give it directly to them.

  • Bellhops and Porters: Tipping is customary for staff who help with your luggage. A usual tip is 20-50 pesos per bag, depending on how big and heavy your bags are.
  • Housekeeping: When it comes to How much should you tip housekeeping in Mexico, a daily tip of 20-50 pesos is common. You can leave this in an envelope with a thank you note or just in a spot where it’s easily seen in your room. Housekeeping are super hard working staff – I always make sue to leave a tip to say thank you!
  • Concierge: While tipping concierge is not mandatory, it’s a nice gesture for exceptional service, like making reservations or offering helpful advice. A tip of 20-50 pesos is generally good.

Remember, tipping at all-inclusive resorts helps ensure that all guests receive the best service and staff are rewarded for their hard work.

Cancun aerial view of Hotel Zone in Playa Linda at Mexico

Cafes, Restaurants & Bars

Tipping is a common practice in Mexico’s cafes, restaurants, and bars. A good server who is efficient, friendly, and professional can make your experience better and keep you coming back.

Tipping is important because these staff members are often on their feet all day and deal with a lot of customers – some of which might not be very nice to them. They also build relationships with customers, requiring skills; patience and understanding.

Here’s a quick guide to tipping in these places:

  • Restaurants: The usual tip is about 10-20% of your total bill. The exact amount depends on how well you think the service was. Make sure to check for service charges on your bill – if that shows, you don’t need to tip but you can still tip a server if they did a great job.
  • Cafes: Tipping in cafes is nice but not always expected. You can leave small change or just round up your bill to a neat amount.
  • Bars: At bars, it’s normal to tip, typically around 10-20 pesos per drink. If you get a complex cocktail or exceptional service, consider tipping a bit more. Bartenders put effort into making drinks and sometimes even craft personalized cocktails.
TLACOLULA, OAXACA,  Traditional ice creams and water vendors at a restaurant in Tlacolula, Oaxaca, Mexico

Food Delivery

In Mexico, tipping food delivery drivers is a common practice and highly appreciated. It’s a way to thank them for ensuring your meal arrives quickly and in good condition (eg: still hot).

Tips support these service industry workers, helping to ensure they are fairly paid for their work.

A good tip for food delivery in Mexico is about 10-15% of your order’s total cost, or at least 20-30 pesos. If the delivery was especially fast, complicated, or made in bad weather etc, consider tipping a bit more.

Cozumel Mexico - hooters motorcycles of orange color parked on street outdoor. Food delivery service concept

Street Vendors & Markets

When it comes to tipping in Mexico, the amount you give can differ based on the type of service you receive. Even small tips, like a few pesos, are welcomed. You can choose to round up your bill or give a little extra for especially good service or as a way to say thank you.

It’s worth noting that tipping street vendors isn’t as common as tipping in restaurants or hotels. The amount you tip a street vendor can depend on how happy you are with their service or product.

While not every street vendor expects a tip, giving one is a nice way to show you appreciate their service or their hard work. Tipping street vendors can also help support local business owners and have a positive impact on the community’s economy.

Mexico Market With Fruits and Vegetables.


Tipping airport porters in Mexico is a helpful way to support those who assist travelers with their heavy luggage!

As porters often depend on tips as part of their income, especially if their wages are low (which they probably are..), your extra tip can make a significant difference for them and their families.

  • For Airport Porters: A fair tip in Mexico is usually around 10-20 pesos for each bag. The exact amount can vary based on how heavy or big your luggage is, and the quality of service you receive.
Passengers at the departure hall of Cancun International Airport in Quintana Roo, on the Caribbean coast of Mexicos Yucatan Peninsula. It is the second busiest airport in Mexico.

FAQs About how much do you tip in mexico

In Mexican restaurants, it’s customary to tip between 10-20% of the total bill. The exact amount should reflect your satisfaction with the service. If the service was exceptional, you might lean towards the higher end of this range. For buffet-style restaurants where less service is provided, a smaller tip of around 10% is acceptable.

While tipping is not mandatory at all-inclusive resorts, it is highly appreciated. Staff at these resorts often rely on tips as a significant part of their income. A common practice is to tip service staff like housekeepers, bartenders, and waiters. The amount can vary, but as a general guideline, consider tipping housekeeping around 20-50 pesos per day, and for bartenders and waiters, 10-20 pesos per service.

Yes, it’s customary to tip taxi drivers in Mexico. The usual tip is around 10-15% of the fare. For short rides or if the driver helped with luggage or provided exceptional service, rounding up the fare or tipping 20-50 pesos is appreciated. For rideshare services like Uber, tipping through the app after your ride is also a common practice.

Final Thoughts: how much should you tip in mexico

Even if you’ve never worked in the service industry, you can see why tipping is important and how it helps others.

When planning a trip, remember to set aside a bit of your budget for tips for people that deserve it. Your tips can really help the local people in Mexico and encourage them to give their best.

This guide on tipping in Mexico will help you on your trip. Not only does tipping support the local economy, but it also directly helps the people who live there.

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  • Katie Barker

    Katie, a dynamic travel expert and photographer, is dedicated to exploration and sharing her adventures through travel and lifestyle blogging. With a global perspective shaped by residences in Cape Town and beyond, she offers insights into off-the-beaten-path destinations and budget-friendly travel tips. Katie's expertise spans digital nomad living, travel planning, and empowering solo female travelers.

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