Tipping in South Africa/Botswana

Aug 21st, 2005, 04:18 PM
Original Poster
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 74
Tipping in South Africa/Botswana

I can't believe it - we are leaving for Africa in less than three weeks!

The itinerary is:
4 nights in Capetown (Welegelen Guest House)
2 nights Singita Lembobo
1 night Jo'burg Airport Holiday Inn
3 nights Kings Pool
3 nights Vumbura Plains

I have some questions on tipping protocol.
1) How much to tip people who meet us at the airport and drive us somewhere?
2) We'll have a guide in Capetown - how much to tip him? Do we tip at the end of each day or at the end of the stay in Capetown?
3) At game camps, do we tip the guides directly? At the end of each day or the end of the stay? How about paddlers, trackers or others?
4) Is it correct that the tips for general cleaning/cooking staff are put into a communal box?

Thanks in advance - Í've already learned an incredible amount of information on this board.
Dlemma is offline  
Aug 21st, 2005, 07:58 PM
Join Date: Jan 2005
Posts: 100
Dear Dlemma,

I am by no means a confident tipper, as an Australian, it is not something that is expected here as a rule, except in restaurants. So here goes:

1. i would think no more that $10 for a couple, and only because less than that no matter how short a time just seems lousy.
2. i would think, if each day was a full day and that you had the same guide each day, then at the end of your stay, that $50 would be a good tip for very good service.
3. Yes, i do tip the ranger & tracker at the end of each stay not daily - for two I tip $10 for 2 of us each day, then the tracker i halve it - as the ranger is with us most of the day.
4. i usually put anywhere from $10 - $20 in the general tipping, but i do leave about $5 per day in my room (usually for 2 people) and restaurant staff that i see 3 times per day, everyday i also give a tip to directly, also approximately $3-5 per day.

It is not a cheap exercise, especially when I know what i pay to stay there, but i do feel that the staff, in my experience, are well worth it!

Enjoy your trip I have stayed at Singita Boulders and I do love it and have been there the last two Decembers and shall return again this December.

austkaye is offline  
Aug 21st, 2005, 09:06 PM
Join Date: Aug 2004
Posts: 396
At the camps, you tip the guide at the end of your stay, not every day. We always put the tip in an envelop with a "thank you" note, and gave it to them directly when we said goodbye.

There's a communal tip jar for the staff.

linjudy is offline  
Aug 22nd, 2005, 04:11 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 74
Thanks for the help.
One question for Austkaye (Kaye): I'm assuming that since you are Australian that you are giving amounts in Australian dollars??

Dlemma is offline  
Aug 22nd, 2005, 05:54 AM
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 413
Dlemma - We stayed at the Welgelegen as well. It's a nice place in a nice location.

Try searching for tipping in this forum. You'll see many discussions and good information in this area.
Favor is offline  
Aug 22nd, 2005, 05:17 PM
Join Date: Jan 2005
Posts: 100
Dear Dlemma,

No, I have to think in US$ because I think that most tipping guides I have read have been from the US. My very first trip was with A&K and all information was given in US$ regarding tipping, so I have kept that. I often think that I may be a bit generous, but most of my stays tend to be for longer periods of time than average.

austkaye is offline  

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