About Me

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Born in Stockholm (Sweden), now live in Sapporo (Japan). Hold a Ph.D. in computer science and work with computers during the days, perform magic in a bar during the nights (and weekends, for kids). Also used to teach historical fencing back in Sweden.

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Waiting for a taxi

Las Vegas is not that great for walking. There is some form of public transportation, but it is pretty well hidden. When you are in a rush from one show to the next, the standard option is taxis. But since everyone else is also trying to get a taxi, the line can be very long...

Speaking of taxis, in the U.S. it is mandatory to tip in all kinds of situations. Taxis expect 15% tip or more. We tipped one of our taxi drivers almost exactly 15% percent but he became angry and said that it was too little and that we needed to pay more. Despite not having been a particularly great driver, and despite having spent some time (with the meter running) trying to catch up to a guy who cut him off to yell at that driver (the other guy was driving like a crazy person so yelling at him was not strange, but perhaps he could let it go and just drive us to our destination if he is getting paid by us).

In Japan and in Sweden, people get a salary that is enough for them to live on so there is no tipping. Some people tell me that if there is no incentive of a tip, service will suffer, but I must say that Japan has much much better service at restaurants, taxis, hotels, etc. than anything I have experienced in any country with tipping. Much much better than in the U.S.


  1. Fast det ges ju dricks i Sverige också.. Även om det inte är riktigt lika påtvingat som i USA..

    1. Jag har aldrig gett dricks till en taxichaufför i Sverige, men det har väl hänt att man gett dricks på restaurang. Jag har dock aldrig råkat ut för att någon blivit arg och krävt mer dricks av mig i Sverige :-)

  2. I hope you didn't give-in to giving that cabbie a bigger tip. He's clearly taking advantage of the "foreign" tourists. Completely unacceptable. It is not a law for anyone to give any tip, even 1% especially if the service wasn't good.

    I'm a Vegas local, just happened upon your blog (great blog by the way).

    1. We did give him the extra dollar he asked for, figuring one dollar more or less is no big deal for us. But I was a bit surprised.

      Here in Japan there is no tipping unless there is something extraordinary happening, and since everyone in the service industry is super polite in the "ordinary" state too, I don't know what you would have to do to qualify for tipping :-)

      Of the 25 or so countries I have been to, Japan has the most polite service I have seen, which always makes it a bit awkward when you are travelling and getting much worse/less service than you are used to and people expect you to tip for that, haha :-)