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I went on a business trip and I took a few Uber trips. At the end of the trip, Uber asks you if you want to tip the driver.

I chose yes and paid 15% tip.

I have to send a list of my expenses to the company.

Should I include the tip? Or is this something I should pay myself and not the company?

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  • 7
    A country tag would be very useful here, as tipping culture varies between countries. A 15% tip is almost mandatory in the US for anything other than really horrible service, while in many other countries it's considered excessively flaunting. In many countries tipping is merely about rounding up to the nearest integer.
    – Val
    May 10 at 20:56

4 Answers 4

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i have to send a list of my expenses to the company. shall I include the tip?

Yes. You should include the tip in your list of expenses.

That way, you'll find out if the company reimburses tips or not. (Most likely they will reimburse reasonable tips.)

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  • 29
    Some companies also have policies on what to tips in what circumstances as it also impact company reputation.
    – Jeffrey
    May 9 at 13:14
  • 6
    Some warning about being country specific and highlighting reasonable tip portion may be helpful. While in US 15% "tip" is mandatory for pretty much any service during a trip, it is not in other countries. 1000$ tip for a cup of coffee would likely rise some questions even in US :) May 9 at 16:48
  • @AlexeiLevenkov And in some places people expect tips depending on weather or not they think you're American. Over here locals definitely tip 0% almost 100% of the time and the same goes for most other Europeans who work here but somehow Americans are kind of expected to tip.
    – slebetman
    May 11 at 3:37
  • Another warning on tipping outside the US. In some places tips are given to the business owner, not your waiter/server. Tips here are often considered as a "keep-the-change" gesture where you give the business extra income to support the business.
    – slebetman
    May 11 at 3:42
  • @AlexeiLevenkov mandatory? i don't think a mandatory expense qualifies as tip
    – hanshenrik
    May 11 at 9:59
39

This entirely depends on your company. Check their rules.

However for what it's worth, every company I've ever worked for has covered tips as long as they are for the normal expected amount. The tips are a normal expense that you would not have paid if you had not been doing what the company asked.

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  • As a counterexample, where I work we are given a flat rate daily per diem and tips are supposed to be included in that. So while we are technically reimbursed for them, tips are excluded from expensed items.
    – David K
    May 10 at 16:03
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    With a Per Diem approach you usually don't need to submit a list of expenses. And Ubers are often not counted in the Per Diem. May 10 at 16:07
  • For us per diem covers food and any gratuities, and everything else (including Uber fare) is expensed.
    – David K
    May 10 at 16:47
  • @DavidK Well, yeah, if someone asked "Should the company pay for my food?" "I have a per diem" isn't a counterexample. May 10 at 18:17
  • @AzorAhai-him- The question was about expensing gratuities explicitly. My situation was meant as a counterexample to that. I mentioned per diem for food because it's directly tied to why I have to pay for tips. OP didn't mention whether they expense food or get per diem (because it wasn't relevant), but many companies will expense meals and tips too.
    – David K
    May 10 at 19:43
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There should be an expense policy in your company covering this. Tips are liberalities (in most cultures), and as such, some companies cannot justify affording them, while others may allow you to pay them so long as they are "customary" (for example, in countries where they are more morally required).

Either way, we don't work in your company and cannot tell you what is right or wrong on this issue, so you should be asking this question to your manager or finance department instead.

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    Tips are not liberalities in all cultures. May 9 at 7:58
  • 4
    My (UK) company would refuse to pay tips from expenses as they weren't an essential expense of the journey or meal.
    – Richard
    May 9 at 22:59
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    @GregoryCurrie if it is illegal to not pay 'tip', it should not be called a 'tip'
    – Tvde1
    May 10 at 9:21
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    @Tvde1 Agree. But here we are. May 10 at 10:41
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    @Tvde1: It's not illegal, it's just considered incredibly gauche (in the same way that walking down the street in one's underwear is not illegal).
    – Kevin
    May 10 at 15:07
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In theory, company policy counts above all else.

In practice in some jurisdictions, some service provides - most obviously, taxis - are happy to provide receipts for the full amount, without separating what was billed and what was tipped on top.

It's important to remember that if local practice conflicts with company policy and you get caught, that will prolly justify dismissal for gross misconduct and quite likely also lay you open to a criminal charge of fraud!

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    dismissal and criminal charges for fraud for adding a 15% tip to an Uber driver?!!! can't you see it is a little too much?
    – asmgx
    May 10 at 23:50
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    Fraud? ROFL. OP is not talking about underhanded payments. Breaking company policy is not fraudulent, neither is submitting a claim including an itemised tip if the tip was paid. At worst company will decline to pay part of the expense claim and inform OP they don't include gratuities. Do it repeatedly after being told not to and company may dismiss for disobedience, but still no fraud
    – mcalex
    May 11 at 3:12
  • @mcalex Sorry it's a fact, but it is a fact that many May 11 at 13:55
  • @asmgx Can't you see, if this is about about one tip to one driver, the Question isn't worth the expense slip it's scribbled on. Yours might not and my experience does include claiming for 20-minute taxi rides each way every day for six weeks. Others on that project claimed for another six weeks and more on either, and some on both ends of that. Can you see 15% of several months' fare is rather far from "a little too much"… the more so when it's all in a foreign country? May 11 at 14:23
  • @mcalex Submitting a claim including an itemised tip is precisely the opposite of what I suggested, which is submitting receipts for the full amount as fare, in order to cheat company policy. Sorry if that wasn't clear. Without being blinkered by the size of Asmgx's single claim, do neither of you know petty-minded or vindictive managers whose poisonous agendas professional or personal would give them great glee in getting their teeth into even such a small excuse to throw someone out. May 11 at 14:43

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