Tipping in Jordan
How Much to Tip in Jordan?
Tipping Guidelines and Baksheesh Etiquette
Tipping in Jordan, like everywhere in the Middle East, is an intergral part of the tourism sector.
Many of the employees in hotels and restaurants are underpaid guest workers from Egypt whose salaries are fixed at a low level - in anticipation of tips.
On the other hand I do belive that tipping is a way of showing your satisfaction with a service rendered. If you are not happy with the service you received, don't feel obliged to give a tip just because it is 'customary'
In my opinion tipping should be used like little 'reward stickers' we give to kids: to encourage exceptional performance as opposed to average or poor service.
Tipping in Hotels
Hotels from the midrange to top-end categories generally add on a service charge of 10%.
For bellboys and porters, JD 1-2, or US$ 2 is customary to give.
If you stay at a hotel more than one night it's good idea to give a few dinars or dollars in advance to the room service personnel and the cleaners.
They will pay extra attention and surprise you with swans and other creations they fold from your towels.
Tipping in Restaurants
10% for service may be automatically added to the bill, but a small tip - 5-10% - for the waiters is appropriate.
Taxis and Drivers
If you travel in a metered taxi in town, pay the nearest round figure to the price on the meter.
If you hire a driver for a day trip, always negotiate and agree on the price beforehand.
In this case you don not have to give additional tip at the end of the day, BUT if you feel you received very good service you may express your gratitude by adding to the amount you agreed before.
If you participate in a package tour, your travel agency can advise you about the expected tips to the driver. General guideline: JD2-3 per person per day.
Again, in case of a group package tour, let your travel agent advise you. The amount of tip can depend on the size of the group, duration of the trip, etc.
If you hire a private guide for yourself - for all Jordan or in wadi Rum - you should agree on a total price for his services. Only pay extra if you feel you received great service.
In touristic sites like Petra or Jerash you can hire an official guide from the Visitor Center and I recommend to give them some extra tip, depending on your satisfaction.
Some of the guides are very knowledgeable, have a degree in history or archaeology.
On the other hand there have been some complaints reported about guides in Petra who refused to continue the guiding beyond the Treasury unless paid extra. Always keep your receipt of the fare you paid at the Visitor Center and complain to the Tourist Police if you feel you didn't get the service you paid for.
Everyday people in Jordan do not expect baksheesh for simple things like giving you directions, most of them would refuse to take anything if you offered. However, it is nice to give some small change for kids when they do a favour for you.
If you hitch hike, you are expected to pay the driver roughly the same amount you would pay for the public bus.
Snorkeling guides: when you hire snorkel gears on South Beach you can usually ask someone to show you the best spots on the coral reefs. Depending on the duration of the guiding and, again, your satisfaction, you can pay him JD5-10.
For any other services like glass bottom boat, short camel and horse rides, horse cart etc. you pay the price they charge so I don't see a reason for extra tipping, but of course you are free to give them some extra if you are happy with their services.
Speaking of baksheesh and tipping in Jordan...
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