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ROSEMARY TAIT
New member
Username: Romeytait

Post Number: 4
Registered: 12-2007
Posted on Saturday, January 05, 2008 - 12:09 pm:   Edit PostPrint Post

My husband and I have been in Buenos Aires twice and rented apartments and we love the city. We generally tip 10% in restaurants and give the change to taxi drivers as we were advised, but we've had some confusion about other services. When the young woman who cleaned our apartment was leaving after her last weekly visit (we had been there a month) I held out my hand to her with a folded note in it. We'd been very happy with her service which was provided by the owner and wanted to reward her. She didn't speak any English but I think was aware of my intentions .She couldn't possibly have known how much the bill was. She was very embarrassed, blushed, almost in tears, put her hands behind her back and said, "No, no, please!" I felt the tip was an insult.
When I went to a nearby establishment for depilation I was very pleased with the aesthetician and astonished at the low price. The woman who did the work was obviously the manager, if not the owner, and when I paid I tipped her about 20% of the price. She took it but she frowned with obvious displeasure.
I didn't tip the doorman of the building where we rented an apartment for the month and I've heard that tipping is not so expected as in North America. I can only approve of this if it is so because I believe it's a demeaning practice; people shoulc receive the salary the job is worth and not be dependent upon the condescension of patrons. However, I want to do the right thing by those who assist me. Any advice?
Rosemary
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Roberto
Board Administrator
Username: Admin

Post Number: 1434
Registered: 12-2004
Posted on Saturday, January 05, 2008 - 7:06 pm:   Edit PostPrint Post

Rosemary, I think you have a precise perception. Some wages -although low- cover someone's full time job and as you noted providers are not expecting tips. Out of what you mentioned (restaurants, cabs) I also generally tip in service stations if I get some help (usually the case) and sometimes barbers at barbershops. What is also common and never mentioned is that many argentines give a little *bonus* to others at the end of the year, such as workers in your own building (encargados, etc) but this is not for temporary visitors.

Argentines receive by law a half stipend by mid year and by the end of the year called 'aguinaldo'. It's like a 13th month of salary and even though this is not considered a *tip* by itself it is thought of as a bonus/reward that can help cover special expenses such as those in Christmas, etc (some pay the full aguinaldo a year's end).

So in all, you are correct, tipping is NOT widespread to everyone and all services and most argentines who are caught by surprised by this nice gesture will think to themselves "but I am only doing my job".
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Linda Wilson
New member
Username: Linda830

Post Number: 2
Registered: 2-2008
Posted on Tuesday, February 12, 2008 - 1:02 pm:   Edit PostPrint Post

I have several tours and airport transfers scheduled for my trip to Buenos Aires and Santiago. Was wondering about tipping the drivers. If so what is the normal amount? Don't want to offend anyone. Any advice would be appreciated. Thanks.
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Roberto
Board Administrator
Username: Admin

Post Number: 1522
Registered: 12-2004
Posted on Tuesday, February 12, 2008 - 8:48 pm:   Edit PostPrint Post

I think the transfer drivers will be happy with a usd $3 - $5 tip. I don't think they will be expecting any...

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