Tipping in Sicily 

With so many of our clients in Sicily or preparing for departure, I’m getting a lot of questions about tipping in Sicily: When to tip? How much to tip? Who to tip? We must remember that in Italy, they don’t have the same system as we have here in the U.S., that is, we don’t pay our service people full wage, so they are incentivized to give you good service, so they will receive a better tip, and therefore, better pay for their work. This is not the case in Italy. Providing [good] service is built into the price of what you are paying for for the goods or services. They don’t have a “carrot on a stick” system. Therefore, know that leaving a token of gratitude for good service is welcome, yet, leaving 15-20% on top of your bill is unnecessary, and in some cases, looks ostentatious to Italians, as if you are showing off how much money you have. Leaving some change from your order or 50 cents after a well-made cappuccino is plenty. A couple of Euro on the table after a well-served meal, very nice. Rounding up your cab fare 10% to the next denomination, also appreciated. But don’t go over the top! That, my dear readers, will back-fire on you and look “maleducato” (rude).

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