It may seem strange that almost everyone in Mexico expects, or hopes for, a tip (propina) to do their job. There are a few good reasons for this. First, some people don't receive salaries for the job that they do, being dependent on the tips they make. Second, since minimum wage is very low and some salaries are barely above minimum, tips may be the only way that some can survive.
The amount you tip is at your discretion and should be based on the quality of service you received. That said, there are some standards for tipping. To give you an idea of how much is usually tipped, and which service providers will expect a tip from you, here is a rundown of who and how much to tip in Mexico. Ask your friends, neighbors and your maid to help you find out how much to tip the individuals below.
- Baggers: People that bag groceries at the supermarket do not get a salary/wage, only tips. 5-10 pesos
- Parking lot attendants: They help direct you in and out of the parking space. 5-10 pesos
- The public street parking guards. When you park in "their space" you pay a tip to rent their parking space on the street. The amount depends on the area.
- Valet parking attendants
- Gas station attendants: Those who fill your car with gas and/or other services. 10-20 pesos.
- Restroom attendants: They often leave a plate out with a large amount it it. Some public restrooms charge a user fee that is posted. 1-2 pesos
- Garbage men: They will usually tell you, and you don't really have a choice. If you don't pay, they won't pick up.
- Taxis: No tip is required but if a driver has been helpful to you you may want to tip him or her.
- Restaurants: In restaurants in Mexico it is customary to leave a tip equal to 10 to 20% of the total of the bill. In some restaurants, service is included, particularly if you're part of a large group, but this is not usually the case. Always check the bill to see if service is included or if there are errors in the calculation. If a service charge is included, you may choose to tip extra for superior service.
- Mailman's day (12 November)