The Tipping Culture To Know While Dining Abroad In Mexico

Whether you're going to Mexico for a relaxing time on pristine beaches or trekking to Mayan temple ruins, eating out is a must. And if you're constantly making pit stops at taco stands or enjoying higher-end establishments, it's worth making a note of the new social customs you may not be accustomed to. 

Standard etiquette, especially unspoken rules centered around dining out, is important to understand so you don't get labeled as a rude customer. This includes how to handle your dishware, how to ask for more food, and of course, if and how much to tip. For many Americans, this gesture is socially required when going out to eat, and when it comes to the expectations in Mexico, these instincts won't lead you astray.

It is considered polite to tip your servers while dining in the country. However, there are slight differences you should be aware of, such as exactly how much to tip and splitting the bill. 

Lower the percentage and refrain from splitting the bill

While tipping is common in the U.S. and Mexico, it's a bit easier on your wallet in the Southern nation. By today's standards, diners in the States are expected to dish out about 20% of their bill for a tip; however, the servers only expect to get tipped about 10% to 15% in Mexico. The latter is usually reserved for excellent service.

If you find yourself jumping from different street food vendors, though, you don't need to worry about tipping since it's usually reserved for sit-down establishments. But when in doubt, it doesn't hurt to give extra pesos to someone serving you food if you feel inclined. Also, while splitting checks may seem natural in the States, it's actually frowned upon in Mexico. In this instance, you and your friends can decide who pays the bill while the other takes care of the tip. 

Plenty of other services in Mexico require tipping as well, like taxis and valets, so it's a good rule of thumb to make sure you have plenty of small bills and coins ready to be distributed.