As the summer travel season heats up, let’s revisit the topic of tipping in Sicily. First, refer to my original post on Tipping in Sicily at https://experiencesicily.com/2017/06/19/tipping-in-sicily/, where I address gratuity in restaurants and when taking a taxi.
Now, let’s go deeper: private drivers, bus drivers, and local guides.
Because these professionals host tourists from the U.S. often, the culture of tipping, in this case, is different. They have grown accustomed to Americans tipping them, so now, it’s part of our travel expenses. Certainly, let’s remember that a tip is a gesture of gratitude for good service, so if you feel you haven’t received good service, then don’t tip! However, if you feel a guide or private driver has impressed you with his or her kindness and knowledge, then consider a tip of 10-20% of what you paid for their service.
For a professional bus driver who carefully and attentively drove you as part of a tour group for a week, consider at least €3-8 per person per day.
Really though, there are no set rules. (Note: Italians don’t tip at all because the know the guide or driver valued the service accordingly. And, culturally, they take pride in providing good service! They don’t need a financial incentive to do so.)
The point is, different from restaurants, bars, and taxi cabs, gratuity for those who host us Americans is part of our expense. How much you give is up to you.