Posted in Travel

Customer service and tipping in Europe versus the United States

Generally speaking Europeans are welcoming, polite and kind people speaking multiple languages; however some might argue that the French are rude or the Italians are cocky or the Germans are cold. English is widely spoken even in non-English speaking countries but they may expect you to speak their language; after all you go to their countries.

When it comes to customer service you need to remember one thing: In Europe people have a fixed salary in every industry so they may not make the extra mile for you; it doesn’t really matter if you are satisfied and happy with their services, whether you return or not, because they will still get paid. Don’t expect them to customize services for you, especially in the last minute, they are not that flexible. Keep in mind that Southern Europeans close down during siesta so you won’t get anything done. It is just a differently lifestyle, laid back and a little more family friendly than the USA since people go home for lunch.

In the United States people earn commissions on sales and tips in bars and restaurants.  Americans are highly motivated to serve you well because that is how they make a living and they need your continued business.  Europeans find it bothersome when a waiter checks on them 3-4 times during dinner because if they needed anything they would let you know with a hand move. Tipping in Europe is always welcome but not expected; tipping in Europe means leaving a coin or two (Euro) on the table or 10% in upscale restaurants.


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