Tipping In Denmark

Do you tip in Denmark? A complete guide to tipping in Denmark

Many people are now aware of Copenhagen’s glitz and glamor, but Denmark has several hidden gems further afield — such as its dynamic second city Aarhus. Scandinavia’s southernmost country is also a breeze to do business in, making it a frequent destination for business travelers. Is tipping in Denmark expected when you visit, though?

The Danes have numerous cultural differences compared to places like North America and South America, and even the other Nordic countries. Understanding these before traveling will help you enjoy a more seamless travel experience, and we’re here to help in that respect.

This article will identify tipping etiquette in Denmark.

Do you tip in Denmark for restaurants and hotel staff?

In countries like the United States and the United Kingdom, tipping is often expected in the service industry. But in Denmark, you don’t need to worry about doing so; nobody will give you dirty looks if you only pay the up-front price.

Unlike many parts of the world, service staff in Denmark enjoy relatively good wages. The country doesn’t have a mandatory minimum salary, but strong trade unions and a cultural emphasis on equality have contributed to lower-skilled jobs receiving living wages.

When you eat out in Danish restaurants, you’ll also need to remember that the meal alone will cost quite a lot — even for something basic. Moreover, you’ll have a service charge included in your restaurant bills as Danish law requires them to do so.  

While Danish law does not require you to tip in restaurants, you can leave up to 10% if you receive exceptional service.

In hotels, you can leave a small tip if you received excellent service — but you’re not obliged to do so.

Danish Kroner

Is tipping in Denmark expected in bars and nightclubs?

Denmark is home to some of the world’s most famous beer brands, and Copenhagen has arguably the liveliest nightlife in Scandinavia. If you find yourself out on the town, you’re not expected to tip the staff, and nobody will scorn you for not parting with extra Danish Krones.

Again, though, you can always tip if you feel like you received outstanding service. Many bars and pubs will have a tipping jar at the counter, and you can add any coins or notes you want there.

Some places might let you tip via credit card, but doing so is a hassle.

Tipping etiquette for tour guides

Regardless of whether you visit Copenhagen or somewhere else, Denmark has plenty of history, and you’ll find plenty of interesting tours to join. Tipping in Denmark is slightly different for some tours, so it’s worth keeping these in mind.

Tips and service charges are included in the cost of your tour. However, you can still give the guide a little more if you enjoyed the experience.

In Copenhagen and Aarhus, you can join free walking tours; these are entirely tips-based, and you can pay however much you thought the tour was worth at the end. It’s a little more customary to give tips on these excursions, so we recommend that you do.

Tipping etiquette in supermarkets

If you’re used to cultures like the US, where someone will help you bag your groceries, Denmark will shock you. Shopkeepers in Denmark minimize conversation and focus on getting the job done as soon as possible, and none of them will expect tips from you.

In higher-end stores like MENY and Irma, the staff will likely be more polite to you as it fits in with those supermarkets’ brands. However, people at the till will likely earn better salaries than for the same position in most European countries — and you certainly aren’t expected to tip them.

Danish tipping etiquette for cab drivers

You’ll rarely need a taxi in Denmark, but they are abundant in the larger cities (though not so much in smaller towns). Taxi prices in Denmark are generally pretty high, but the good news is that you don’t need to tip the driver, and they probably won’t expect one from you.

One thing worth noting is that you’re typically expected to round the total fare up to the closest even amount with Danish taxis. So, if your fare was 109.75 DKK, you’d pay 110 DKK.

Tipping in Denmark for hairdressers

If you need to fix up and get a haircut for your big business meeting or a night out, you’ll probably end up at a hair salon. There is no tipping rule for hairdressers, but you can add one for good service.

Man Holding Danish Kroner

Do you tip in Denmark for cafés and bakeries?

Coffee and baked goods are two of the most important cornerstones of Danish society, and you’ll find plenty of cafés and bakeries dotted around smaller towns and big cities alike. So, do you have to tip in Denmark for either of these?

In short, no — you’re not expected to tip in Denmark for cafés and bakeries. However, you might be able to if you want to; ask at the front if you’re unsure.

Is tipping in Copenhagen different from the rest of Denmark?

Copenhagen is very different from the rest of Denmark, and you’ll quickly notice this if you ever make a trip over to Jutland. However, tipping etiquette doesn’t differ too much.

It’s perhaps more common in the capital, but you’ve also got to remember that’s largely because this part of the country receives the bulk of international tourists and business travelers.

Even if you’re in the touristy parts of Copenhagen, you’re usually not required or expected to tip.

Tipping in Denmark isn’t one of the local customs

Do you tip in Denmark? In short, you can — but you’re not expected to.

Service staff in Denmark usually earn a living wage, and you’re not expected to tip if you go to a nice restaurant or you’re impressed with your housekeeping staff. However, you’re unlikely to get rejected, and whoever’s serving you will probably appreciate the gesture.

If you’re visiting Denmark, you’ll probably begin or end your journey in Copenhagen. Get an overview of how much you can expect to pay as a tourist in our complete guide.

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