Recommendations for Tipping in Peru

One of the most common things we’ve discovered by traveling anywhere is that, hands down,  figuring out the tipping policy in a new country is challenging and awkward.  Believe us – we get it!  

It’s especially difficult to navigate tipping in Peru because the workers here are incredibly humble.  Peru is a country that relies heavily on tourism, and the locals working in the industry will work very hard to make your stay wonderful in hopes of earning a few extra dollars for their pockets. 

Our team of guides, porters, and chefs are paid well for their service, but the culture here engrains an ideal that a worker in the tourism industry hasn’t fully demonstrated their job to the best of their ability unless a customer feels compelled to directly provide a little something more. 

Where it gets tricky is when you come upon a circumstances where tipping is not expected at all (we couldn’t make it that easy!). So to help you navigate, we created the guide below.  

Please remember – no matter where you go -tipping is always optional! Only do it if you feel like you’ve received excellent service.

As you go through this guide, keep in mind:

  • Peruvian tipping amounts will not be equal to what you might expect to pay in your home country.  Two to five soles will be more than enough.  No need to focus on leaving 10% or 15%. 
  • Feel free to tip in either Soles or US Dollars.  Peruvians are using US Dollars more and more these days and in some cases it is the preferred currency. 
  • While there are some industries where tips are more “expected, ” please do not ever feel obligated to leave a tip if you have had poor service.

Remember -these amounts are strictly meant to be used as guidelines.  These teams work incredibly hard during the hikes and if you feel they deserve more, please show them your appreciation.   

Tipping on the Trail

Tipping Guides, Porters & Cooks for longer hikes (2+days)

  • Trekking guides, porters, and chefs generally rely on tips for the majority of their income.  These teams work incredibly hard to make sure you are having the best experience of your life by taking care of your stuff, cooking amazing food, and leading you safely and enthusiastically through one of the most beautiful places in the world. 
  • Depending on the duration of the trip, size of your group, and, of course, the service provided, the following charts can be used as a guideline to help you determine how much cash you may want to bring along on the trail.

SAMPLE - 4 Day Inca Trail Tipping for a Group of 4 Travelers

Role

Total Staff

Tip Per Day

Total Tip

Total Per Traveler ($)

Total Per Traveler (Soles)

Porters

8

$9*

$288

$72

S/.216

Chef

1

$15

$60

$15

S/.45

Guide

1

$50

$200

$50

S/.150

Total

$137

S/.411

*Inca Trail porters tend to earn a little more because they carry everything and cannot use the assistance of pack animals like they do during alternative treks.

SAMPLE - 4 Day Alternative Trek Tipping for a Group of 4 Travelers

Role

Total Staff

Tip Per Day

Total Tip

Total Per Traveler ($)

Total Per Traveler (Soles)

Porters

4

$8

$128

$32

S/.96

Chef

1

$15

$60

$15

S/.45

Guide

1

$50

$200

$50

S/.150

Total

$97

S/.291

Other Helpful Tipping Info:

Tipping Tour Guides – Full Day Tours

  • This is one area where tipping will generally always be expected, but again, please only tip if you feel your tour guide has done a good job.
  • As a general rule of thumb, a tour guide will anticipate getting S/. 35.00 – S/. 40.00 or $10-$15 dollars per person for a full day tour.  If the guide is only leading one or two people, the hope would be that the small group would provide a little more in tips for the “private” tour.
  • The tour guides in Peru are very well trained, so you should anticipate that service will be outstanding and you may want to tip above the amount listed.  Please feel free to do so. 
  • Please remember to tip the driver if you are on a tour what requires bus or van service.  The traffic in Peru is crazy and requires a lot of focus, so it never hurts to show some appreciation.  About S/. 30.00 or $10 from the group would be great.

Tipping at Museums and Cultural Sites (1-3 hour guided tours)

  • Guides in Museums and cultural sites do generally expect tips and, depending on the duration of the tour, size of your group, and of course the quality of the tour, costs may vary. Generally for one person, a good tip would be S/. 5.00 ($2) for 1– 1 ½ hours, or up to S/. 10.00 ($4) for 2 – 3 hours.
  • Once again only tip if the guide has been very interesting and enthusiastic.

Tipping Taxi drivers

  • YOU MUST ALWAYS AGREE ON A PRICE BEFORE YOU GET INTO A TAXI IN PERU. Taxis here do not have meters, so do not get in unless you have agreed on a price before you begin.
  • Taxi drivers do not expect tips and will take you for only the negotiated price. It is a rule that there is no re-negotiation on price once the ride has started, so even if there is terrible traffic, do not feel obligated to pay more for their time.
  • If the driver has been extremely friendly or has managed to take a route that avoided a ton of traffic, you can consider giving a tip or S/. 2.00 or S/. 3.00 ($1-$2) if you really want to, but normally taxi drivers never get tips.

 

Tipping in Restaurants

  • It is not common to tip in most restaurants. If you feel you have had fantastic service or a really great meal, you can leave one, two, or even five Soles on the table.
  • One exception to this rule is for high-end restaurants. In these establishments, it is expected that you will leave a minimum of 10% tip, or more if you have had amazing service.

 

Tipping in Hotels

  • There is a service fee already added to your bill that goes directly to paying the employees, so there is no need to tip.
  • Depending on the type of hotel, you may have a doorman or concierge. It is usually customary to tip this person if they have helped you with your luggage or they have been particularly helpful during your stay by accommodating requests or making recommendations. A tip of S/.5.00 or $2 would be common.
  • It is not necessary to leave a tip for housekeeping. In fact, any money “left” in the room will likely be placed in a lost and found area for up to 90 days.