Discussion in 'Culture' started by Dana, Jan 26, 2005.

  1. Dana

    Dana Well-Known Member

    Hi everyone,

    Having returned from the U.S. after living there for a number of years, and having come back to a country that is quite different from the country I left (mainly more commercial and more Western), I'm feeling a little out of touch with the way certain things are done here, e.g. tipping. I know tipping in restaurants has already been discussed on these boards. I'd like to get your input on tipping in other situations though.

    - How about tipping a hairdresser? If your haircut bill comes to 463 Kč, how much do you actually pay?

    - Do you tip when you're picking up food to go? Let's say you ordered a pizza at the local pizzeria, came to pick it up, and the price was 120 Kč. Do you tip? I'd say no because no service was provided, plus you're already paying 10 Kč for the box, but a confirmation will be appreciated.

    - How much do you tip the guy who comes to repair your gas heater? If the price is 230 Kč or 760 Kč, what do you do?

    - Taxi driver? Is 10% customary?

    I'm talking about Prague here and am also wondering if there are any differences between Prague and elsewhere in the country.

    I'll appreciate your input. Thank you!

  2. evian

    evian Well-Known Member

    It is customary (and expected) to tip hairdressers 10-15%, if the bill comes to 463Kč - 520Kč is a appropriate amount. The same applies to taxi drivers, particularly if they turn on the meter at the start of the journey. Tipping in Bars, Cafes and "food to go" restaurants (i.e. no service) is not required. Tipping is more relaxed and less common in areas other than Prague and Plzen etc.
    Hope this helps!
  3. tuzemski

    tuzemski Active Member

    I'm sorry either I don't understand this or maybe you made a mistake when typing. If you don't tip in a restaurant or a bar, you'd better never go back. You might find some "extras" in your meal! No it's not "required" and certainly it's not required to tip anybody.
  4. brigitte

    brigitte Well-Known Member

    If I thought a meal was overpriced for the amount/condition of food I got for my money, I would not tip whether it was required or not. It wouldn't bother me not going back, because I wouldn't have planned to anyway...

    Doesn't matter where in the world!
  5. Dana

    Dana Well-Known Member

    Thank you everyone for your feedback! It is definitely helpful.

    tuzemski, I think evian was referring to "food to go/take away" restaurants, i.e. situations when you only come to a restaurant to pick up a meal you've ordered by phone, in which case you're getting no service from waiters. I believe it should be acceptable to not leave a tip in that case and still be able to come back without feeling embarrassed.
  6. tuzemski

    tuzemski Active Member

    re read his quote and pay attention to the word and before take away restaurants
  7. Karel

    Karel Well-Known Member

    Hi Dana,

    So long as I can remember, tipping a hairdresser was in high fashion even before 1989. If your bill amounts to 460 a reasonable tip would be 40 crowns, if ask me.

    Food to go? Absolutely not.

    Gas heater repairs. Usually making a cup of coffee or buying a few beers should be sufficient. If someone`s really generous 20 crowns for 230, and 40 crowns for 760 would go along with the hospitality thing.

    Taxis. Find out beforehand how much it would be on the meter.(I wouldn`t ask the driver I`m about to go with in the cab) If it is (say) 500KC make an offer of 350 or 400 without the meter on. Not really haggling. He either cuts the deal or not. If not, I`ll take another cab. It almost always worked with me. The price was always irrespective of the number of people in the car.

  8. Sova

    Sova Well-Known Member

    I had always heard that when tipping is appropriate (restaurants, hairdressers, etc.), just to round the bill amount up to the nearest "round" number. If I understood Karel's intents correctly (230 + 20 = 250; 460 + 40 = 500; 760 + 40 = 800; all nice round numbers), then this is his general practice as well (correct me if I'm wrong, Karel). Now if the bill were really close to the next round number, say 795 crowns, I'd probably go with 850.
  9. Dana

    Dana Well-Known Member

    Thank you Karel and Sova. I remember how things were in the past, especially outside of Prague, which is where I used to live. Now I came back from the U.S. and settled in Prague, and was not quite sure of how the tipping custom may have changed over the years and if it's any different in Prague where many people are used to providing service to foreigners. Tipping in the U.S. seems to be based on percentages rather than rounding and I know that some Americans routinely tip their hairdressers 20%. I usually go with the "safe" 10% (plus a cup of coffee if applicable ;)) for most things in Prague and realize that I may be overtipping in some cases, so hearing from others really helps.

  10. Qcumber

    Qcumber Well-Known Member

    I have already been twice to Prague, and I still don't understand how tipping works in Czech bars and restaurants.
    In my country, France, service is automatically added to your bill so that you know what you have to pay. Generally people do not tip. Tip is reserved for extra services.
    In Prague, I have the impression they confuse "tip" and "service". I mean waiters and waitresses seem to expect a tip implying that it is their "service" that is being paid. Yet, the bill doesn't include any specific amount of money that corresponds to service.
    After a couple of visits to a restaurant on Wenceslas square, the waitress added 10% with her pen on my bill. Obviously she expected 10% the previous times.
    Conversely in another restaurant downtown, where I paid less for a comparable meal, I asked if service was included. The waitress answered : "Of course, Sir." So I think that the 10% in the other restaurant was a sort of small-scale racket. 8)
  11. Karel

    Karel Well-Known Member

    That`s correct, Sova.

    I read or heard somewhere that Tomas Bata was the first one to introduce prices ending in 9s. 29.9, 59.95, and so on. Maybe someone was just pulling my leg. :D

    If the bill was 795, 850 would be likely and reasonable, I think. Or, if I had two 20 crown coins, I would probably toss them on the table, as a second alternative. I`ve always felt the ten and twenty crown coins very convenient. Emptying your wallet and getting rid of all your coins of lower value is also an option. A nice round pile. :D

    I think that even if the Czechs had some unwritten law of tipping 10%, it could never work in practice because of the waiter`s impossibility of breaking your bill. It was always one of my nightmares to buy something for 30 crowns when I had only a 500 crown note on me. Cashier : "you are kidding me, I don`t have any change. You`ve got to break it somewhere else. There`s a post office round the corner". When you got to the post office, you heard it once again, but this time your destination was a bank, :D

    Some women sometimes got their GPs, gynecologists etc. a packet of coffee, or a bottle of inexpensive wine. I don`t know if this custom has been handed down to younger generations.


Share This Page