When to tipOccasionally we get asked when is the right time to give the tips. There are a few options:
After each activity
At the end of each day
At the end of your stay
General rule of thumb: just tip once, always at the end of your stay at each safari camp or lodge. Not at the end of each activity, or each day.
Guides wouldn't expect you to tip after each of the daily activities, as it could create the impression that the guides need to 'perform' for the person giving the tips, which can distort the relationship between them and the other guests. Imagine the position other guests might find themselves in should you be offering tips this frequently and they were not.
How to tipIn general, Zimbabwean camps will have a main 'tip box' that is shared out between the general staff equally, while guides you would normally tip directly in person. The majority of camps will explain their exact tipping policy in their camp literature, although the camp manager will certainly be able to help you out if there's any confusion.
The normal practice is to tip in cash, and as US Dollars are currently Zimbabwe's official currency this is the best currency to tip in. However, UK Sterling, Euros and Rand will also be happily accepted.
How much to tipTipping in Zimbabwe is not compulsory but always appreciated, and the amount will always depend on your own opinion and personal satisfaction. Based on our own experiences, and discussion with camp managers, we would suggest the following amounts as a rough guide:
- US$10 per guest per day for a group guide
- US$20 per guest per day for a private guide
- US$5 per guest per day for general staff
In contrast, the equivalent GNI in the UK is about US$118.74, in the United States about US$150.58, in New Zealand about US$109.80 and in Germany about US$125.45.
Tipping can be a sensitive issue, but there's no need to be embarrassed by it. It's a normal part of the service industry in Zimbabwe, and the staff will have seen a huge range of tipping practices from international guests. Just remember that relatively affluent visitors can have a large impact on the local community: tipping can influence the economic and social balance - so do bear this in mind when tipping in Zimbabwe.
Our top picks for holidays to Zimbabwe
We'll always tailor-make your Safari for you. Here are some of our favourites to inspire you.