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Unread postPosted: Mon Oct 03, 2005 12:03 am 
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Virtual Ranger
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Thanks all for the feedback in getting this out in the open.

In terms of guides for walks or drives, I don't think they expect a tip, but they certainly appreciate the acknowledgement with much humility and graciousness. To avoid embarrassing the guide (or other passengers), I shake their hand and include the cash in the palm of my hand. Sounds very clandestine, but they wouldn't want you to make a big show of it. I think it is good practice to tip the guides, but they need to have made the effort to have earned it.

I'll go from to zero up to R50 for a guide, with R20 as standard. I'll normally leave R10 a night for the cleaners, 10-15% for waiters. Haven't quite figured out the right level for petrol attendants - I either get the evil eye or the look of someone who's just won the lottery.

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Unread postPosted: Wed Oct 05, 2005 12:41 am 
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Junior Virtual Ranger
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This is a subject attached to emotion(good or bad mood) can sway your % of tip. Did a quick search and this turned up, check it out.

http://www.findalink.net/tippingetiquette.php

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Unread postPosted: Wed Oct 05, 2005 9:17 am 
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Senior Virtual Ranger
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arks wrote:
Loams wrote:
A guides salary is about R 3000-00 per month I've heard. Obviously it's dependant on highly qualified they are


Do guides also get housing provided for themselves and family? Are other benefits included in lieu of higher salary?


I think it depends arks. Most get housing and meals. I am also sure the guys in Kruger get medical as well, seeing as they have facilities there. They have a primary school in Skukuza, so I presume that's either very cheap or free. Don't know about high school.

Make no mistake, a good guide can earn more than R15 000 a month in tips alone, but that isn't the norm

All this info is ballpark figures though, and it will vary from reserve to reserve

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Unread postPosted: Thu Oct 06, 2005 10:28 pm 
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We have always given a tip when we have stayed in the Kruger. I feel that the staff top up their salaries with the tips they get but I also feel that they should earn them. The guide books say that tipping is welcome but not expected and only tip if you get good service. We did have one bad experience at Olifants when the waiter did not return with our change, we were waiting to give him a tip out of the change. My husband asked him for our change and he reluctantly brought it back and my husband then said to him "I will decide how much the tip is, no you", I was embarressed and felt very awkward, we did give him tip but I don't think he deserved it. Next morning at breakfast the same waiter served us and I must admit he treated us a bit differently, he was very polite and attentive and yes, we did tip him!


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Unread postPosted: Wed Nov 30, 2005 2:02 am 
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Glad that I found this thread. It has very useful information. It would never have occurred to me to tip someone at a gas station. It's simply not done in the US. What would an appropriate tip be for Petrol attendant?


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Unread postPosted: Wed Nov 30, 2005 11:38 am 
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Wild@Heart wrote:
What I usually do in the KNP is to give the Petrol Attendant a R40 when I know he will be there every morning. Then before I leave the gate in the mornings I quickly pull in and he checks the oil and water and tyres and cleans my windscreen ... and they always remember who tipped them.


Thanks for this useful tip, W@H. Would never have occurred to me and makes lots of sense! :thumbs_up:


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Unread postPosted: Wed Nov 30, 2005 7:06 pm 
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I have often wondered if I should tip a guide , because of the idea that they are a profesional , not a regular labourer , even though they probably earn the same .
Going to start tipping for exelent drives and walks from now on !

As for the petrol/maids/resturant staff , I tip on service , if the service is prompt at resturants , if the room has been cleaned
nicely , or the abloutions while camping , I will tip .

What I normaly do for tips at the picnic sites (the way out ones) , is to take a fresh loaf of bread and some fresh milk to the staff there , it is much appreciated by them , as they really are out in the bush .


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Unread postPosted: Sat Dec 03, 2005 7:53 pm 
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We seldom use the restuarants in the park, most of our cooking is round the braai. I often try to leave a portion of meat for the cleaner for lunch or a snack. They usually appreciate it.
When we leave I will tip according to the number of nights we have stayed. I always wish I could afford to tip more as we have only ever had excellent service from the domestic staff.
All the carwatchers know me at our local shopping centre and we have developed good relationships. This paid dividends recently when my tyre had a blow out on the way to the shops. Despite the fact that it was Saturday morning, prime tipping time, they were falling over each other in their eagerness to assist.
I have on occasion witnessed the most appalling treatment of our workers, so even if I don't have change on me at the time, I try to thank them for their service.

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Unread postPosted: Sat Dec 03, 2005 8:26 pm 
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I always leave a tip in the Cottages when I leave at Kruger, tip waiters, petrol attendents, everyone basically, as I know none of these people earn salaries worth mentioning and if we all tip, even if it's just a samll amount, it can make quite a difference :)
But have to admit, hav'n't known quite what to do about the guides, which is odd because it's a given to tip guides in the private reserves.


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 Post subject: Tipping in KNP
Unread postPosted: Wed Dec 07, 2005 12:23 pm 
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Hi Forumites

This is something that I have never really thought about so I really thank you all for your efforts and for raising this subject.

I can't really find any official policy on tipping, other than to say (and to echo) that it should be done responsibly and it should be based on the idea of whether you got good service or not. A pretty standard South African tip seems to be 10% of the cost of the product and I would think this should be everyone's guideline.

As an organisation, we are certainly not against the idea of tipping people who guests feel are doing sterling work (and I like the idea that they should do it with a sterling smile too!).

There is a caution about tipping (and here I write in my personal capacity!), that I would like to bring to everyone's attention. My wife and I went on a tour to Egypt last year and were totally horrified at the attitude to tipping in that country. We felt that they demanded a tip for the simple act of taking your bag out of the vehicle and putting it onto a trolley right next to the vehicle. This I thought (again my own opinion) was a bit ridiculous. And they become pretty hostile if you don't give them what they call Bakeesh.

I would sincerely hope that South Africa, and specifically the Kruger, never goes that way as I feel that alienates people.

So what I am trying to say (officially) is that you are welcome to tip for good service but please do so responsibly. Only give really good tips to those who REALLY deserve it. What I can ask here is that if you do give a good tip to someone, tell them exactly why you giving them a good tip so that they can go and tell their colleagues and perhaps motivate others to also give excellent service.

Regarding the guides, they are presently employed on contract basis but accommodation and other benefits are written into this contract. Waiters are employed directly by the restaurant and are mostly casual labour (as are most waiters in South Africa) although there are some that are employed permanently. Cleaners, petrol attendents and other staff are employed permanently by SANParks and, depending on their post, get paid according to a Patterson Grading System (mostly A and B bands) which is worked out in consultation with the unions.

Hope this helps

Kind regards
KNP Spokesman


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Unread postPosted: Wed Dec 07, 2005 4:15 pm 
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Thanks for this very useful and illuminating post, KNPSM.

While not so bad as in Egypt, tips in the US have also become expected â€â€


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Unread postPosted: Wed Dec 07, 2005 6:21 pm 
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arks wrote:
I welcome your suggestion to "tip responsibly" rather than "automatically" as most Americans do.


I agree too. After a few run-ins with the 'service industry' in the US, we started adding 20% on to the budget for a holiday because of tips. But now we think stuff that, if the service warrants it, we will tip 10-15%. If the service is grudging and bad I ask for the service charge to be removed from my bill.

My experience in Kruger has always been one of genuinely friendly people - it is seems to be part of the culture of who the people are, and so they are tipped because their service is good - I hope it stays sincere, and doesn't become a case of seeing tourists as cash cows instead of people. For guides - I tip according to the experience, not how much game we have seen. It is often on the 'barren' game drives that we learn so much more from the guides who go into how the ecosystems work, and point out special sightings of bugs, birds, plants and trees, so we don't tip according to how much game we see, but more as to how interactive the experience has been, and how many new things I have learnt.

I tip if my expectations have been exceeded, not merely met in terms of the person's job description.


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Unread postPosted: Thu Jan 26, 2006 4:10 pm 
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papop wrote:
I agree with you, it is maybe tacky, and I hate when I’m in Private lodge to find in my room 10 envelopes with staff members names,.................

But in restcamps it on my way a different thought. As you know and everybody knows that tips are a widespread practice, I think it is a good way for us to give a tip for all the staff. Because if you only give money to the people which who you are in contact with (I'm not sure to be clear!), the man for example who is scratching the grass in front of your bungalow, or the one making the washing up in the restaurant, may never have anything, and for me it is not fair, because they are doing their work as the others.


I have never been given tip envelopes at private lodges - we've just left an amount at the desk and on occasion given extra to individual staff we felt warranted it.

To do the same at the rest camps might be more difficult, as there are far more staff, who would decided who received it and how would it be divided up.

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Last edited by DebM on Sat Apr 22, 2006 12:54 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Unread postPosted: Sat Apr 22, 2006 10:47 am 
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Can anyone give me an inkling as to how much to tip?

Tipping is often very much commen sense, but it's always nice to know that one is not offending people with too little, nor giving too much...

Graeme


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Unread postPosted: Sun Apr 22, 2007 10:25 am 
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iLoveMeerkats! wrote:
How much do you generally tip the kind fellow who washes up the skottle?


We normally give the guy R5 and he is always happy, be interesting to hear others views. :roll:


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