Tipping Across Canada: How Does Your City Compare?

Which city is home to the most generous tippers in Canada? We analyzed data from our sellers to get a money map of which provinces are pinching pennies and which have the deepest pockets when it comes to tipping.

tipping in canada photo

Perhaps it shouldn’t come as a surprise that Vancouver, a city stuffed full of creatives and with such a strong focus on service industries, came out on top when it came to tipping the most in Canada, with a generous average tip of 16.47 percent. Ottawa slipped from its pole position last year to come in second with a respectably average tip of 15.65 percent. Montreal, Toronto and Halifax were neck and neck with an average tip of 14.74 percent, 14.59 percent and 14.47 percent respectively. Despite being one of the ‘richer’ cities, Calgary brought up the tail end with a miserly average of 14.20 percent.

Outside of the cities it’s a different story — provincially the average tip varies from 13.68 percent and a close 13.69 percent from Saskatchewan and New Brunswick, to a high of 15.38 percent in Manitoba. All the other provinces hover around the 14 to 14.50 percent mark.

Most of us know the etiquette for tipping in restaurants (minimum of 15 percent on your pretax bill, 20 percent for good service), but what about other services?

In hair salons and spas it’s good manners to tip around 10 percent, and the same goes for taxi rides. Coffee shops and even some stores have tip jars at the till — tipping is not expected for counter service, but in cafes you can drop your change in as a goodwill gesture, especially if you’re a regular. At the bar it’s customary to tip anywhere from 50 cents to $2 a drink depending on what you’re buying. And if you’re having food delivered, and it gets there on time, then a 15 percent tip will be expected.

Read more in:

Get the latest business tips and advice delivered straight to your inbox.

Each issue will feature articles and advice on how to grow sales, improve your marketing, simplify accounting and much more.