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Tipping Expectations in Macau?

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Tipping Expectations in Macau?

I'm posting this thread in hopes of generating some valuable input on the subject of 'Tipping' in Macau.

We are frequently asked about tipping standards and expectations on the Hong Kong forum however, this question doesn't seem to come up much on the Macau forum nor can I find much in the subject when searching through our past posts.

Please share your thought on 'Tipping Expectations' in Macau if you done mind. Some prompt questions are below.

-What are your experiences tipping in Macau?

-How is tipping different between Macau and Hong Kong?

-How is tipping different between Macau and your home country?

-What is a fare amount to tip at restaurants?

-Should others be tipped, housekeeping and other hotel staff? Taxi and transportation services? Macau Tour Guides?

The following discussions on the HK forum can be viewed if reference to the subject of 'tipping' is needed.

tripadvisor.com/ShowTopic-g294217-i1496-k503…

tripadvisor.com/ShowTopic-g294217-i1496-k484…

All posts are welcome. Thanks in advance, to all!

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11. Re: Tipping Expectations in Macau?

I was playing in the Grand Lisboa casino last month. And I was winning a lot of chips. So I decided to tip the dealer. I tried to give the dealer a chip, but she was actually confused. She thought I wanted change or somthing. Then the pitboss arrived and I tried to explain to her that I wanted to tip the dealer. Finally she understood and said "Ohhhh, tipsie !!" At the side of the table, there's a slot that they would normally put tips in it. And it was covered with scotch-tape. She had to peal off the tape to put in the tip. Then they say 'O.k., thank you sir' with smiles.:) So my guess is tipping has been rare in Macau casinos. Where in Vegas it's the norm. Hopefully things will change because most dealers in Macau are quite polite and friendly, but sometimes they do get verbally abused by some losers, and unappreciated.

Edited: 12:42 am, July 11, 2013
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12. Re: Tipping Expectations in Macau?

Jim K,

If we sum up your original post and follow-up comments it seems that you will tip non-Chinese (Post 5) but that you will not tip ethnic-Chinese (Post 8). Further, you have stated that you will speak to wait staff in Chinese and ask where they are from (Post 10) before making the decision to tip or not.

Do you see where this is going?

If indeed you engage in such practice, your actions would be nothing short of discrimination. And seeking to determine the race of staff before making the tipping decision is an exercise of prejudge, which is something that we can’t support on this forum.

In fairness to you, I don't know if it is your intention or not to come across in this manner but I'd really ask you to think about what your writing. Your comments will be viewed as highly offensive and disrespectful to the people of Macau and pretty much anyone who is ethnic-Chinese, of which there are many!

In the end, the decision to tip or not tip is and will always be your right to decide. I just don't support making that decision based upon a person's ethnic race, alone, particularly in a place like Macau where restaurant staff will often be a mix of racial representation.

Edited: 5:27 am, July 11, 2013
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13. Re: Tipping Expectations in Macau?

I make no apologies to you or this board. You talk to me like this board is yours....it's not. Didn't know Trip Advisor was your website, BradJill.

It seems as though you've missed the point. For your benefit, allow me to enlighten you.

Tipping is not expected nor is it the social custom in Macau. Go to old school hardcore Macau restaurants like Long Wa or Sheng Li or wherever, and there's no one tipping in there. They don't expect it, because it's not done. Are you following me here? Therefore I don't do it either, and I am not alone. Local Macaunese don't do it, mainland Chinese don't do it. I suppose they're all racist too?

Another contributor above mentioned that we should conform to the practices of the city we're visiting. According to their logic, then I should tip no one, correct? Well I don't do that. I feel badly for not tipping an Indian or a Filipino or an Indonesian because tipping is something that is done in their countries. I don't feel badly for not tipping a Chinese because .... I ....Never....Do. I've lived in China for 8 years and never done it and neither do any of my Chinese friends. You pay the bill, get the exact change, and then leave. That's the way it's done here. When I go to Macau, I see ZERO reason to change this behaviour, especially when tipping is neither expected, nor is the social custom, nor is done, among local Chinese in Macau.

If tipping were the social custom in mainland China and in Macau, then I absolutely would tip Chinese servers every single time. In this case it's not, so I don't.

I hope I've addressed your concerns to your satisfaction.

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14. Re: Tipping Expectations in Macau?

Jim K,

Let me attempt to address a few of your points as best as I can.

>>>>I make no apologies to you or this board.<<<<

Jim K, nobody is asking you to apologize. You have simply been asked to think about what you are writing, as your comments come across as offensive, whether you intend for them to or not.

>>>>You talk to me like this board is yours....it's not.<<<<

If you actually read through my response you will see that I have given you the benefit of doubt in regard to your adamant suggestions. However, it is clear that you are not providing me the same courtesy. That is fine, Jim K.

>>>>Trip Advisor was your website, BradJill.<<<<<<<<<

As stated above, I have tried to give you the benefit of doubt in regard to your comments. As such, this claim seems unreasonable and quite unnecessary. However, if you really feel this way, I offer my apology as this is not now nor has it ever been my position in regard to my volunteerism here on Tripadvisor.

@Jim K

>>>> It seems as though you've missed the point. For your benefit, allow me to enlighten you.Tipping is not expected nor is it the social custom in Macau. <<<<j

Jim K, I'm very sorry to tell you this but I am afraid it is you who have missed the point of my post.

I have not one time objected to the fact that tipping isn't expected in predominately Chinese establishments. What I have objected to your direct comments that you >>>>speak Chinese to wait staff and ask where they are from <<< and your suggestion that you tip or not based on that information.

I have even stated that it remains your right to tip or not tip, regardless of whether you actually engage in this practice. Please read my last paragraph (post 12) to you if you didn't pick up on this.

@Jim K

>>>> Another contributor above mentioned that we should conform to the practices of the city we're visiting. According to their logic, then I should tip no one, correct?<<<<

This would be Happyfeet1234, a fellow DE, former longtime resident of Hong Kong and someone who has visited Macau many times over several decades, and you are now taking part of his comment, out of context, to further your position.

I can only suggest that you read his full comment again and really think about what he has posted (post 7) as well as what you are doing.

@HappyFeet1234 (post 7)

>>>> I think we should follow the tipping custom of the country where service was rendered, not of the origin where the servers came from.<<<<

Jim K, It is very clear what HappyFeet1234 wrote and what his comments mean. Further, I can’t imagine a situation where HappyFeet1234, nor anyone for that matter, would be pleased with you bending the meaning of their words in the way that you have, and I personally don't appreciate you having done this to a valued TA Member like HappyFeet1234.

Edited: 12:20 am, July 12, 2013
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15. Re: Tipping Expectations in Macau?

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16. Re: Tipping Expectations in Macau?

The topic of tipping always seems controversial. I think partly it is because we all come from diverse backgrounds, from different countries, from different customs, from different environments. We have very different views.

Tipping is up to you, of course. No one points a gun on your head and demands a ten dollar tip for serving you a cup of coffee, or whatever. If you appreciate the service, you show your gratitude with a ten dollar tip. Or twenty. Or thirty. Or a hundred. Or zero. It is nobody's business. It is between you and whomever you tipped.

I just found it odd, since your first post on this subject, that you presented your reasoning for your tipping practice. So whoever served you your meal in Macau, you would talk to them.

Oh... you are from Bombay? Okay, here's an extra 50 MOP from me. Because you must have expected this! Good work!

Oh... you are from the Philippines? Great! Here's an extra 100 MOP for you. Because you must have expected this. Nice work!

Oh... you are a Chinese born and raised here? I can tell by even just taking a look at you! Ain't have nothing for you pal! Blame it on your fellow countrymen, man! They never do no tip! I ain't got nothing for you either. Move along, move along!

I have dramatized it. But it seems to be what you are saying here.

= = = = =

Also, I feel that you are a bit unfair to BradJill with your remark "You talk to me like this board is yours....it's not. Didn't know Trip Advisor was your website, BradJill.". I read the posts again and I did not remotely got such an impression.

The Destination Experts, who are all volunteers, have all signed an agreement with Trip Advisor that we understand the guidelines of the forum and we abide by the posting rules and regulations.

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17. Re: Tipping Expectations in Macau?

No HappyFeet, you actually have that right. That's pretty much how it is.

And yes they can blame it on their countrymen. Because if their countrymen did tip, then so would I.

BradJill, you and this forum "can't accept" my prejudging? What is that? I responded to a thread here, said my opinion and you jumped all over it. Said we can't have this here. It's racial discrimination etc. Is it racial discrimination or do I never tip Chinese because no one on the mainland does? Because that's just the way it's done in China, and by extension Macau, which is 97% Chinese?

I thought that comment was out of line, since to my knowledge, you do not run this forum and it is not yours.

And I don't know that I have bent Happy Feet's meaning. I think what they said is quite clear. Conform to the rules of the city we're visiting. In this case, it's Macau, and conforming to the rules in Macau means that one does not have to tip when there. Which, coincidentally, is the very reason why I don't tip Chinese, and feel no real no need to.

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18. Re: Tipping Expectations in Macau?

JimK, we can't stop you doing what you will, but with many years living IN Macau, I can tell you that just because you give a tip to a Filipino/ Portuguese/ American staff member in a restaurant does not mean they will get more than a small part of it: pooling systems are popular among staff, and you will find your tip equally distributed with the Australian chef and mainland chefs/ dishwashers and other backroom staff. If you're OK with that, then so be it.

And as I'm in Macau at present (staying with friends I got to know when I was working my first extended stint here, back in the early '90s), I do wonder how you will determine whether to tip the many Eurasian waitstaff at high end restaurants here ... if they are brought up in the USA and back to "find their roots", then they come from a culture which expects tips; if they were brought up here in of, say, British- Chinese parentage, they don't.

I'm not saying to tip or not to tip; I'm just saying it's not nearly as simple as you made it out to be in your initial post.

Macau. Is. Not. Mainland.

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19. Re: Tipping Expectations in Macau?

After I give the tip, whatever happens to it happens to it. I have no control over that.

Macau is not the mainland and thank God it's not. I understand that. But we're talking about tipping and in terms of tipping it's extremely close, if not identical.

And as to your point of the exact nationality of the server. Hey, I don't care enough to ask them for a copy of their family tree or conduct an in depth interview regarding their history of where they grew up. On those occasions when I improperly stiff an Chinese who grew up in America or give some Indonesian who grew up in Macau an extra 100 MOP, well then so be it. I'm not going to lose sleep over it.

Admittedly my system is not a perfect one but I bet I get it right 98% of the time.

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20. Re: Tipping Expectations in Macau?

To round up this General Tipping in Macau thread.....

It has been noted that tipping in casinos is possible if you wish to do so (post 11).

If you visit other businesses within the hospitality industries, you will find that tipping culture exists in Macau. However, you are under no obligation to 'tip' if you don't wish to do so.

Further, it remains the general consensus of the forum that tipping in Macau is an acceptable practice and if you wish to do so, using a basic 'rounding up' approach to tipping, which is also common in Hong Kong is most recommended. Or to keep matters simple, tipping in the 5-10% on restaurant bills would be considered appropriate.

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