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Tipping Clarification

Toronto, Canada
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1,152 posts
9 reviews
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Tipping Clarification

I've read various threads on tipping and one thing is still a little unclear. Let's say you are a group of 4 in a single vehicle and it's a non camping 11 safari, so only a guide/driver. The usual recommendations for tipping seems to be $10-$25 per day. I'm just unsure if that is per person per day or is it per group per day. It makes quite a bit of difference. Four people at $15 each per day comes to $660 whereas $25 per day per group comes to $275.

I'd appreciate your advice.

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Ottawa, Canada
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1. Re: Tipping Clarification

It is all up to you, but I would say the range is for a couple, but others will have different opinions. However, definitely not $15 per person per day. It might also depend on the amount of energy they expend. Does he recognize and treat each of you as individuals and make an effort to play to each of your interests? That might warrant a bit more in the kitty.

Isle of Man, United...
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2. Re: Tipping Clarification

Tipping is of course a personal thing but I stick by the guideline that it is per vehicle and not per person in the vehicle. After all the driver is only driving the one truck and it matters not how many people are being carried.

$660 is a huge amount to Tanzanians in terms of salary even for professionals. This is meant to be a present by way of thank you if earned. $15 per day is still $165 and a tidy sum. For four in the car you could err on the upside to say $200 between you.

Always ask yourself "Did I earn it that easily?"

Chicago
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2,102 posts
4 reviews
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3. Re: Tipping Clarification

I disagree a bit on this. It does take more energy and work to wrangle 6 people and answer questions, deal with personal desires,etc. than with 1. I like QMs advice of thinking of it as couples. At the same time, a person who chooses a solo safari should expect to pay more/tip more per person than one who chooses to share their time/space with others. I think a better guideline for good service is $15-20 for a single safari, and $10 per person for a group

Findlay, Ohio
Destination Expert
for Tanzania, Ngorongoro Conservation Area
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12,485 posts
8 reviews
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4. Re: Tipping Clarification

Tips should only be done if the service was good, not because you feel sorry for the driver/guide. And it should be done by the vehicle not the individual, IMO. and as in all things, it is a personal thing and whatever you do is up to you, not someone else. Just keep it in context and realize that some go there and provide more than a month's pay to their driver/guide, and that's a bit over the top.

Isle of Man, United...
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38,907 posts
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5. Re: Tipping Clarification

Well as stated often it is a personal thing but I don't really follow sciguy's logic here.

Taking the above extremes on a 14 day Safari. 4 folks would tip $560 and a singleton $210.

Now next time I would expect to see the driver angling to drive only full cars. (or the poor singleton, already hit by "supplements" feeling pressured to match.)

Per car is the fairer way for all concerned.

One could also argue that a singleton is harder work than a group as a group will look out for themselves whereas the loner will lean on the Driver for company.

Tipping is a thank you not a meal ticket. Overtipping is not a good idea. Imagine this fictitious driver with 10 trips during the season each of 14 days (140 days) and 4 pax. $5,600 big ones.

nyc
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15,090 posts
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6. Re: Tipping Clarification

I tip per game drive and though I rarely (if ever) go out in the morning, don''t penalize guide for my quirks... he's still available for whatever else i might prefer to do... thus $10/day. And if he happens to have the leisure of reading or sleeping-in when I don't need him... again, not penalized. They do work very hard. However, there have been some days as a solo, it's $15/day. And as I never spend a full-day out in the bush, or some days no game drives at all... it's still minimum $10/day.

When traveling with another, it's $20=25/day to cover as many game drives or whatever is needed from the guide.

Use your good judgement as long as the guide is attentive to your needs, safety and, of course, game spotting.

Toronto, Canada
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1,152 posts
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7. Re: Tipping Clarification

Thanks all! I thought per group made more sense.

Findlay, Ohio
Destination Expert
for Tanzania, Ngorongoro Conservation Area
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12,485 posts
8 reviews
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8. Re: Tipping Clarification

It makes cents.

Bristol
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78 reviews
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9. Re: Tipping Clarification

I am with Mfuwe and agree the tip is per car. I disagree with Sciguy that more people in the car means more work for the guide. I would actually say that in my experience, more people in the car means less work for the guide. When we did a safari in Kenya last year, it was a group trip and there were 5 of us in the car. We actually all chatted among ourselves and did a lot of the game spotting and identification between us. With 5 people's eyes all looking out for things and chatting and helping each other we didn't bother our guide as much as when there was just my husband and I in the car. None of this was a reflection on the guide, we were all just having a good time and getting on well and enjoyed all helping each other.

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Kenya
Kenya
Africa
melbourne
Destination Expert
for Tanzania
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7,581 posts
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10. Re: Tipping Clarification

I will put in my little bit I always thought that when you tip it is also for excellent or very good service. Tipping is not their salary top up nor should it be.

More people in the car usually means less work for the guide..I think the most difficult safaris as a guide are the solo trips.....The client usually demand your 100% attention. If a couple or group then obviously they are also talking to themselves.

Honeymooners are the best clients..they only have time for themselves..usually..and plenty of late starts.

But back to the question... Most people tip per vehicle and per group So for me it would be $15 -$ 20 per day for the entire group in the vehicle.