Apparently, Vietnam hasn’t got a custom to tip. But the “open door” policy in the late 1980′ had paved the way for many cultures and practices arrived. When private economy was excepted, good international brands invaded, iPhone and iPad are used widely, travel and hospitality industry become a hot career to the young workers. In such a case, tipping is gradually becoming a concept that is more often known among service industries as travel, hotel and restaurant as well as some related others.
Since tipping in Vietnam was originally not a norm and being a new concept, it is also not a compulsory thing to do and very much base on how services delivered. If you are treated well and get the excellent service, leaving a tip is something you might consider. If the service or delivery is low, then definitely not a penny handed. Presumably if the staff such as guide, waiter, driver, chambermaid, etc. makes your travel and stay a memorable one with extraordinary services, let’s view the following references:
Chamber maid: US$1 – US$1.5 per night
Waiter: US$0.5 – US$2 depend on the small or the big meal
Guide: US$7 – US$10 per day
Driver: US$3 – US$6 per day
Bell Captain: US$0.5 – US$1 per luggage up/down.
Taxi driver: US$0.5 or round up the payment. If it is a long journey, then tip like driver.
These sharing about tipping in Vietnam is from my real observation over a decade of experience in Vietnam tours and working in this travel industry. I hope it will be of some help and that you have a guideline to follow, just in case.
Happy planning and traveling!
Indochina Voyages Team.