Tipping in Indonesia does not have standard service, and you are not obligated to tip. However, if you find the service helpful or exceed your expectation, it is nice to give extra rewards as appreciation. It is also common to round up to the nearest rupiah in the bill when you doubt about how much to tip. But here are more details about tipping practices in Indonesia.
Most hotels have included the 11% service charges in the final bill. But if you want, you can tip the respective hotel workers if you are happy with their services, such as the bellmen, doorman, valet server, housekeeper, waiters, concierge, etc. – make sure to hand the money directly to individuals. Depending on the type of hotel you're staying at, you can tip them starting from Rp.20.000,- up to Rp.100.000,- or even more – if you want.
Restaurants or café
Some restaurants include the 5% service charges in the bill. But if not, you can leave a tip by rounding up the bill or tip between 5-15%. Some restaurants have the tip box near the cashier where you can put the money into, or you can leave the money inside the bill holder or on the table; these will usually be divided evenly among all staff. If you want a specific waiter to receive the tip, make sure to hand the money directly to the individuals.
Dedicated guides or drivers
If you hire a guide or a car with driver to get you around for a couple of hours or a whole day, you will usually pay for their lunch, and some tips are generally expected – Rp.50.000,- is average for 2-4 hours journey, and Rp.100.000,- is sufficient for a full day service. You can certainly give more if you are very happy with the service.
It is not obligated to tip your guides in Indonesia. But if you want to tip extra to reflect your appreciation for the service, feel free to give as much or as little as you like.
Tipping is not mandatory for taxi drivers in Indonesia. But since most taxi drivers rarely have small notes or coins, many passengers round up the bill to give a little extra.
If the airport does not have the official porter rates, you can pay around Rp.20.000- for each luggage.
Saloon and spa
If you go to saloon or spa in Indonesia, expect to tip after the staff has completed the services. Based on your satisfaction for the service, you can tip between 10-20% from the bill, or a minimum of Rp.20.000,- should be appropriate. Of course, you can always tip more if you like the new look or service.
In conclusion, tipping should reflect some conditions, including the level of service provided and the value of money to the person delivering the service. For Indonesian service providers, tipping can make a big difference for their take-home-pay compared to the salary alone.