How Much Should I Tip In New Orleans

As your local friends and trusted advisors, we’d like to introduce an important lesson in New Orleans tipping etiquette. As a Canadian I get a chuckle from the joke “How do Canadians and canoe’s differ? Canoe’s tip.” However, now that I’m living here, I’m beginning to see the unfortunate truth behind this stereotype. Having traveled to Europe and Asia, I also recognize there’s a fundamental difference in how much, or even whether, to tip here versus overseas.

It’s a sad fact that individuals working in the hospitality industry in New Orleans make significantly less than the national average. Although the Louisiana minimum wage is currently $7.25/hr, staff who earn tips only earn a measly $2.13/hr. That’s no laughing matter.

Tipping is standard practice in the US. Of course, tips are discretionary; however, foreign travelers enjoying the bars, restaurants, hotels, car services and tourist attractions in our lovely city should be aware that tips are a critical, and often necessary, element in one’s income.

We would encourage you to consider a 20% gratuity of the pre-tax amount for someone who exceeds your expectations, 15% for adequate service, and less for less than stellar assistance. To make it easy, double the tax amount (which is 9%) and round up.

You may also wish to consult this New Orleans Tipping Guideline for additional insight.

P.S. Bespoke Experience Architects are compensated well-above the national minimums to acknowledge their local expertise and general awesomeness; however, if you feel that our contributions are stellar, we won’t refuse your generosity.