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 Post subject: tipping
Unread postPosted: Thu Apr 24, 2008 5:19 am 
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Location: Canada
I see many ppl have read my post yet not replied!!
I hope that did not come across wrong?
reading it again it sounds kinda .. well not how I meant it! :redface: I was not saying I am cheep and do not want to tip! LOL I have worked for tips myself in the past and always try to give as much as I can afford!!

I am just not knowing whom it is customary to tip in the park or lodges!
every country I have been to it is always different! other than wait staff in restaurants that seems to be a general standard...of 10 -20% depending on how you felt the service was!! And in Canada it is not customary to tip maids/cleaning staff, gas attendants, or travel staff, many places hire staff to inform, service, greet or just help people but you are not allowed to tip them!

either way I would really appreciate some input ...

I have read on here about tipping the gas attendants, drivers/rangers and ppl cleaning the rooms? is there anyone else I should be tipping as well??? and how much do I tip!??I am just not familiar with the "SA RAND"
I hope I did not offend anyone? I was just hoping to avoid feeling uncomfortable when I get there in some situations not knowing to tip people and what is customary!?

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Last edited by Willowmoon on Thu Apr 24, 2008 5:29 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Unread postPosted: Thu Apr 24, 2008 6:00 am 
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The South Africa Rand is going through a pretty rough ride at the moment and I don't see that it will improve for quite some time. I think that when you arrive here you will find that your dollar will go a long way.

I find that a useful way of understanding the currency, is to look at the MacDonald's index. It will give you some idea of the worth of your money. Once you know that, you will be able to compare monetary values more realistically.
So, once you arrive, see how much a Big Mac costs, turn that around into how many Big Macs you could buy for the equivalent in your currency and work with that.

I know that the Bib Mac index is seen by many to be the most accurate measurement of money.

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Unread postPosted: Thu Apr 24, 2008 7:22 am 
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The general rule when with a guided trip is:

1) The operator should pay all tips. I have a rule on my trips that no staff member may accept a trip, as this could lead to them expecting it and not giving the service they should if they do not get a tip. If I get good feedback I reward my staff myself.

Usualy you would find that the more professional a guide is, the better he is payed and the less he would depend on a tip.

2) When not with an operator it is basicly up to yourself. Many people are pressured into tipping. Tipping is suppose to be givven to those that really offered an exceptional service, not to the average worker who (usualy without a smile) just does what they need to.
3) Meal and other services can be tipped anything from 5% to 15% of the value of the service rendered. The tip does not usualy exceed R50.
4) Fuel attendants can be tipped anything between R2 and R10, but ensure that they did provide a service, as in check water and oil, tyre pressure and wash the windscreen.
5) I only pay a car guard once I'm back at the vehicle and then anything between R2 and R5 is acceptable.

Hope this helps. As I've said some people do go overboard with tipping and this is creating a lot of problems in the service industry.

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 Post subject: Tipping
Unread postPosted: Thu Apr 24, 2008 11:12 am 
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Please don't let the tipping issue stand in your way of a beautiful visit to SA.
Rule no one: Not everybody is expecting to receive tips.
It is customary to tip waiters at restaurants 10% of the total bill, but before doing that make sure that service fees has not already been added.
Some restaurants do add service fees on the bill, then tipping is not necessary.
Fuel attendants - it is totally up to you if you want to give a tip or not.
Parking lot attendants is between R2-00 and R5-00 depending on the time spend in the parking lot (this normally happen at shopping malls etc.)
Baggage handling: The amount of R5-00 per bag is the going rate.
We (myself and SO) personally don't tip the housekeeping attendance personnel every day if we are longer than one night in a camp, but at the end of our stay we give a once off tip according to the service rendered. Paid for and booked Game drives:
I have never paid an additional amount for tips, as I am of the opinion that if that is the case, the guides will identify the "big tippers" and will be giving more attention to them and neglecting the people who don't tip big.
You are paying for the service and game drive beforehand and that is that.
It is therefor totally up to you if you want to tip the guide/driver.
Golden rule: remember most of the people working is South African National Parks do receive a fixed salary and tipping is a means of adding to their income - you be the judge whether their services deserve a big tip or not. (I know I am placing myself in the position of being hanged by this statement, but I have been taken for a ride to many times before by paying tips just because I was feeling guilty and not for being satisfied with services rendered).
You be the judge.

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Unread postPosted: Fri Apr 25, 2008 8:30 am 
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Location: Durban Kwazulu Natal SA
I am probably open to correction on this but I recall reading some place that the staff doing the night rides and early morning rides receive a small basic but are basically volunteers unlike the trail guides etc.
Maybe this could be confirmed or corrected but either way when it comes to the park staff I always reward a job well done some of the tips mentioned are generally a bit high particularly the forecourt when filling up at R10 the restaurants 10 to 15 % is fine if the service is good.
I do find people tend to judge the food quality into this remember the waiter is not the chef.
The cleaning staff in many places are the ones I feel are the hardest done down as they do an essential service but as they are often not seen they get neglected so I always try to leave something for them.


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 Post subject: Re: Tipping
Unread postPosted: Thu Dec 18, 2008 4:53 pm 
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Location: Germany (Bühl) - but dreaming of Africa!
I always give tips abroad but didn`t think at all about the guides... :|


At my last visit we did a bush walk at Balule (well, officially Olifants) and were the only 2 guests! :dance:
On the short drive to the walk we saw lions and were told we would return to them after the walk as they wouldn`t move now anyway.

After a great walk we returned to the lions and stayed there long after all the other cars already had to drive back to camp.
It was terrific and by the time we drove back it was already pitch dark - so we got a littlle night-dribve as well :wink:

Just before arriving at Balule again I was wondering wether or not I should give a tip - I had absolutely no clue if that is regularly done or not (and how much)
I didn`t tip anything and afterwards almost regretted it as they gave us such a wonderful time and put extra effort in it with waiting for the lions to get active...
I was wondering if they had "expected" a tip or didn`t think about that at all

Now reading this thread (should have read it before) I definately should have given a tip - I will keep that in mind for my next trip

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KNP-trip No. 8: 2014!
30 November: Pretoriuskop
1-2 December: Lower Sabie
3-4 December: Satara
5-6 December: Balule
7-8 December: Letaba
9-10 December: Tamboti

1993, 1995, 1998, 2005, 2007, 2009 and 2013. Next trip coming up!


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 Post subject: Re: Tipping
Unread postPosted: Sat Dec 27, 2008 4:28 pm 
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SANParks guides are usually full time paid employees of SANParks. That does not mean that they get the biggest salary ever!

Honorary Rangers do sometimes assist in these activities and they are volunteers who get no pay for the job they do. In fact to be able to do this service will cost a HR a good amount of money in courses, registrations, exams, etc.

Regarding the tipping of guides: I think that it is important to tip guides who gave good service. This does not necessary mean good sightings, because that is not something the guide necessarily have controle over. But a good attitude, good information on what is seen, and following proper guiding principles is important. Tipping these people will encourage them to do a good job, and boost the "good guides". I also think that it is important not to tip a bad or disinterested guide.

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Want to know more about the SANParks Honorary Rangers? Visit www.sanparkshr.org


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 Post subject: Re: Tipping
Unread postPosted: Mon Nov 09, 2009 5:09 pm 
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We did about the same that pippa did when we were at a private reserve.

10 US$ for the staff to split/day
15 US$ for the guide and spotter to split/day

...and, we were the only people who tipped on the SANParks sunset drive out of Satara. 50 rand, I believe.

All these tips might be out of the norm, high or low, depending on where you're from. We're still not sure we did it right. :)

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 Post subject: Re: Tipping
Unread postPosted: Mon Nov 09, 2009 5:12 pm 
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The wage of a ranger is around ZAR 2000-4000 per month + room and board. If everybody tipped like you guys the rangers will live in a palace and even own their own gamereserves. :thumbs_up:


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 Post subject: Re: Tipping
Unread postPosted: Mon Nov 09, 2009 6:02 pm 
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Location: Jakarandastad
At Hippo Pools in July this year I tipped the guide R20. If I could I would have tipped him more. But then I must add, if I did not phone my mom (who registered on the forums today as Wild Dreamer) and told her how exciting the whole experience was, (luckily for cellphone reception at the Pools) and her asking me if I had tipped the guide, I would not have thought of it. Being a government employee a few years back and knowing if you except gifts or money for work done could mean dismissal, I generalised it even in the Krugerpark.

The thing was that on the rocks of the river me and a buffalo was eyeing each other, with only a few reeds and a water pool of about ten meters between us. I was busy recording him on our cam, only to find that I never pushed the record button. The buffalo seemed peaceful and I asked the guide just for another minute to record. The rest of the group were already back at their vehicles or climbing the boulders. Patiently the guide waited till I recorded another minute, not leaving my side obviousely for safety reasons and no problem in giving me that extra time. Although I tipped him only R20, the experience was priceless and next time I'm there, I will be making sure that I will have a far greater tip to give him.


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 Post subject: Re: Tipping
Unread postPosted: Mon Nov 09, 2009 6:30 pm 
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Hi Eagle Owl,

The guide who works at the Hippo Pools, is Daniel. I would imagine he would have been on duty the day you visited.

He has a pair of binocs donated to him by the members of this forum many years ago. When I visited there in August this year, Daniel was there and still had the binocs :dance:

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 Post subject: Re: Tipping
Unread postPosted: Mon Nov 09, 2009 6:45 pm 
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DinkyBird wrote:
Hi Eagle Owl,

The guide who works at the Hippo Pools, is Daniel. I would imagine he would have been on duty the day you visited.

He has a pair of binocs donated to him by the members of this forum many years ago. When I visited there in August this year, Daniel was there and still had the binocs :dance:


Glad to hear this, does that mean we can still go ahead and donate a laptop to Rodger at Tzendze, he really deserves one and he will benifit by being on the forum more often. :pray:


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 Post subject: Re: Tipping
Unread postPosted: Mon Nov 09, 2009 8:14 pm 
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Suspect most people do tip
I do:
For the cleaning staff R15-20 per night per accommodation
(also depending on job well done)
Guides get R20 or more if they did a very good job per person
And also tip the petrol guy R5-10
And some loose coins in the shops/restaurant and the anti-poaching can receives coins as well

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 Post subject: Re: Tipping
Unread postPosted: Tue May 18, 2010 11:16 pm 
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Hi, I found this thread doing a forum search and just wanted to bring up the question of tipping again as I am planning to visit a SANpark later this summer (Addo).

I have signed up for the guided game drives, and I'm just wondering what would be an appropriate tip rate% for a good guide with good information and provides a pleasant experience?

Looking through the thread I have seen a wide range of suggestions, but was wondering if there's just a pretty standard/expected %? per person?

I certainly do want to show my appreciation for a job well done and a good guide, but I am also on a fairly tight budget and want to see what is a good amount.

Thanks!


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 Post subject: Re: Tipping
Unread postPosted: Tue May 18, 2010 11:38 pm 
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Hi dohmai

In general between 10 - 15 % of the fee is generally given as a tip in SA. But seeing that the guides are trained people, with rather low salaries, I think one could give a bit more.

So for a drive something around R 30 should be a good tip, going up to say R 50 if you want to really show appreciation for good work.

For a walk I think you can give even more. The guide after all literally had your life in his care, and it is a much more intense activity.

But as always ... a tip is given for good service. So let that also be a factor when deciding.

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Imberbe = Combretum imberbe = Leadwood = Hardekool = The spirit of the Wildernis!

Want to know more about the SANParks Honorary Rangers? Visit www.sanparkshr.org


One positive deed is worth more than a thousand critical words.


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