Do You Tip At A Luau? (Tipping in Hawaii – What Is Appropriate?)

In the United States, tipping is expected wherever you go, unlike other countries where tipping isn’t expected or can even be seen as offensive. 

When you are traveling to the islands, you may be wondering should you tip in Hawaii?What are the rules and etiquette for tipping when traveling to Hawaii?

That’s what this guide is here to tell you!.

Musicians at a luau.

Should you tip in Hawaii?

Yes, just like other places in the United States, you should tip in Hawaii.

In the United States, the average salaries for servers and wait staff can be very low, and many people rely upon tips. 

The cost of living in Hawaii is a lot higher than the national average in the United States, and makes it incredibly hard for those living there to continue to afford living on the island, especially when paying their bills relies on tips. 

So, maybe visitors consider tipping a little bit higher than normal for great and helpful service. 

What is appropriate for tipping in Hawaii?

In Hawaii, you should tip your servers just as you would in other parts of the United States. For instance, if you go to a sit down restaurant, you will probably want to tip about 10% to 20% of the total cost of the meal and any drinks before taxes. 

In most places, people should tip about 15% for average service, or 20% for great service. Anything less than 15% is typically appropriate only if you had mediocre service. 

  • If at a bar, you should tip about $2 per drink ordered, and tip with each purchase.
  • For coffee places, you can add tips to a jar usually, which again would be about $1 to $2 per drink. 
  • The most common tip for Uber and taxis driver is about 10% to 15% of the total ride fare, plus about $2 per bag if the driver helps you out with luggage. 
  • An appropriate tip for housekeepers would be around $2 to $5 per day if there are multiple rooms in the apartment, and you should always say thank you or Mahalo! 
  • Some visitors deem it appropriate to tip hotel porters or concierge too, for helping with bags or calling taxis. These tips are also around $2 to 5$ per bag or per task. 

Do you tip at a Luau?

Tipping at a luau is often where many visitors get a little confused. Sometimes, when you book a luau it becomes an all day event, where there are games, drinks, dancing, hula lessons and much more. In addition, you often get food and drinks included in the cost of the ticket. 

Therefore, a lot of people assume that the cost of the luau covers the service and entertainment. However, there is no reason why you shouldn’t tip servers at a luau.

If they are providing great service, then tip as you would normally, which would be about 20% of the bill.

In other cases, drinks might not be included in the price of the ticket for the luau, so you will also want to tip the bartenders for making your cocktails.

Again, tip for every drink made, and try to tip about a few dollars per person per drink . You can tip less if someone just passes you a beer, but if you have Mai Tais and Pina Coladas flowing all evening, it is better to tip about $2 to $5, as these can take a little more practice and time to make. 

If you are ever in doubt whether you should tip someone or not, just ask. Simply tell the server that you’re not from the area, and you’re unsure of the tipping etiquette, I’m sure they will happily accept a tip, or politely turn you down if they deem it inappropriate. If you don’t ask, you’ll never know! 

How much should you tip a luau server?

If you feel that you have had great service, then tip your server.

At a luau, sometimes the meal is included in the price, and sometimes it’s not. If it is not included, then tip 15% to 20% of the check for great service, and 10% for bad service. You should not tip less than 10% in any case. 

If the meal is included, then always remember to tip your servers or bartenders a few dollars if they are providing you with good service and great entertainment.

Tips of about $2 to $5 per person are generally accepted as normal. As always, thank your servers and treat them with respect to spread the aloha.

Don’t forget to say mahalo when you leave to express your gratitude! 

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