Five years ago not tipping your taxi driver was considered incredibly rude and almost unheard of. Of course you would tip your taxi driver just the same as a waitress or bellhop. Then everything changed when ridesharing popped onto the scene. Uber and Lyft promoted a “no tipping culture” for their first few years. In fact, it was so heavily enforced that driver’s even faced deactivation if they asked for or hinted at a tip from the rider.
Eventually Uber and Lyft did change their tune after years of backlash from their drivers and both companies now allow tipping, though will still state that it is not mandatory. Through all the confusion, many riders are now unsure if you are supposed to tip or not across all for-hire vehicles.
We are here to say, yes, you should 100% still tip your taxi driver (and while your at it tip your rideshare drivers as well!). Many drivers depend on tips to earn their living and if a driver provides excellent service then it is only appropriate to compensate them accordingly.
What is the appropriate tip amount? The tip percentage can vary from location to location but here are some good rules of thumb to keep in mind when tipping your driver.
In the United States, the standard rate in big cities like Boston, New York to Los Angeles is between 10-20%. To help you decide which end of this bracket you should tip on take a look at the service that was provided to you. Did the driver have impressive local knowledge? Was the speed of service appropriate? How was the driver’s overall demeanor? And did the driver go out of his or her way to help with your luggage or make an extra stop?
In Europe, tipping is not as common as it is in the United States and generally riders will simply tip 1~2 Euros instead of a percentage.
When you start traveling overseas, customs transform and in some cases a simple gesture of gratitude could actually be insulting. For example, the Japanese are uncomfortable accepting tips and are more likely to be confused or offended. Australia, South Korea, Argentina, and Brazil are other countries that do not consider tipping a common practice. Turkish cab drivers do not expect to be tipped, but the cab fare will usually be rounded up. In India, tipping is traditionally not an obligation but it is becoming a more widespread practice. Economic factors in New Zealand, such as the high income tax, highly discourage society from offering gratuity for such services.
If you are interested in comparing all our your rideshare and taxi options and estimated prices before you ride check out our RideGuru Comparison Calculator.