Tipping Guides in Japan: Question to Past Travelers

We are getting very excited about our upcoming Essence of Japan tour. As we are trying to determine how much Yen to bring, we were wondering whether you tipped the Tauck Director in Yen or US Dollars. And what about the bus driver(s)?

Thank you so much in advance.

Eve

Comments

  • It will say in your green book what is the recommended tip (the spiral bound travel documents Tauck will send you once you've made your final trip payment) . In the past it seems to be about $8 per person per day ($16 for a couple).

    There is some useful information about currency for your trip under the "Before You Go", then "Upon Arrival" tabs. Since your tour starts in Tokyo, you can probably wait and get yen upon arrival. Tipping in general isn't done in Japan and Tauck will have already taken care of paying the drive who picks you up at the airport.

    As to whether yen or dollars, this point has been discussed on the forum before. If the TD lives in Japan then yen is probably easiest, but if they live in the US then dollars. Even if they live in Japan, they'll know how and where to exchange money if needed. Hard to know for sure until you meet them.
  • Claudia--Thanks for your reply. We are in the process of ordering Yen before we leave in our trip, although I understand that one of the easiest places to get Yen is at a 7-Eleven in Japan! We were trying to figure out beforehand whether or not we should bring Yen for the tour guide's tip, and we were hoping that others who have been on this trip before could let us know what they did. But as you say, maybe we should just assume we will give the tip in Yen.
  • edited January 2017
    It's almost certain that it is easy to exchange dollars in Japan, much easier than the rigmarole it takes me to get foreign currency in the US. Your tour guide will get a stash of humdreds of dollars at the end of every tour that they will be exchanging if they need yen. Whenever I go to my bank wanting currency for other countries, they look at me as if I have two heads, first because I actually want to leave the US for a couple of weeks and second that I am actually going to take a vacation. One time, they forgot to order the money and if it is not the usual person, they have no clue how to order it. Funny thing is, when I went in to order rupees, not knowing you aren't supposed to take them into India, they got those for me!
  • jteiii, I was on this tour last year. Our tour director was an American as was the Tauck tour director we ran into at one of the locations where tour dates overlapped. We also had a Japanese guide traveling with us at all times. Our director explained that the Japanese Tourist Bureau mandates that all tours also include a Japanese guide.
    The Japanese guide, as well as well as the bus drivers are tipped by Tauck. I tipped our Tauck tour director with US$ and assumed you could tip in Yen as well. Have a wonderful trip.
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  • Golly Gee wrote:
    jteiii, I was on this tour last year. Our tour director was an American as was the Tauck tour director we ran into at one of the locations where tour dates overlapped. We also had a Japanese guide traveling with us at all times. Our director explained that the Japanese Tourist Bureau mandates that all tours also include a Japanese guide.
    The Japanese guide, as well as well as the bus drivers are tipped by Tauck. I tipped our Tauck tour director with US$ and assumed you could tip in Yen as well. Have a wonderful trip.


    Golly Gee,

    This was exactly the kind of response and guidance I was looking for. Very helpful. Much thanks.

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