Budgeting for a Disney World trip is tricky. There is so much to keep track of: flights, resorts, dining, souvenirs.
But one of the areas of budgeting that can cause some stress is knowing when to tip at Disney World.
Even though there are lots of strong opinions about who and when to tip, there are some general tipping guidelines that we recommend following when vacationing at the Walt Disney World Resort.
To know how to plan for your trip check out the list below...
In this article
Anytime anybody handles your luggage
When you travel, you may have times when people help you with your bags. This is especially true if you fly.
In all the situations below plan on tipping $1-$2/bag:
- if you use curbside check-in at the airport
- if you plan to self-carry your bags onto Magical Express
- if you use Bell Services at your resort
- if you use Resort Airline Check-In at your resort
- if you hire a private town car service or limo
Mousekeeping at the resort
Mousekeepers are the hard-working housekeepers that keep your room clean and towels stocked.
Since your Mousekeeper may not be the same every day, you should plan on tipping them $1-$2/person per day.
Want a cute way to show your appreciation? Consider using one of these fun Mousekeeping tip envelopes.
When dining at Table Service restaurants
The standard tip for most areas of the U.S. is 15-20%, so you'll want to plan on tipping that amount when dining at any Table Service restaurant on property.
To help you know how much and when to tip at Disney World, you'll see that Disney prints the tip amount for 18% and 20% of the total on your receipt.
If you are on the Disney Dining Plan, your tips are not included and will need to be paid separately. You can pay your tips with cash, gift card, credit/debit card or you can charge them to your room.
Buffets are considered Table Service and tips are still expected at those locations.
Not sure how to budget for tips on the Disney Dining Plan? Check out the average cost of a meal at each restaurant to give you a rough idea.
Dining with a group of 6 or more? You'll have an 18% automatic gratuity added to your ticket.
Special situations for tipping
Tips are included in your bill at a few locations. Cinderella's Royal Table, Hoop-Dee-Doo Musical Revue, Spirit of Aloha, and Mickey's Backyard BBQ all have the tip included in their prices.
If you plan to visit Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique (or any of the salons and spas)
Just like you'd expect if you were getting a haircut at home, you'll want to plan on tipping at Walt Disney World, too.
If you plan on visiting any of those locations you'll want to budget 10-15% of your expected bill for a tip.
When you valet park
Disney offers valet parking at all of its Deluxe Resorts as well as at Disney Springs.
In most instances, valet parking costs $33/day. Guests with a valid handicap registration and those with a Tables in Wonderland card can valet park for free.
All guests (whether you can valet for free or not) should plan on tipping $2-$5.
Private fireworks cruises
The captains on the private fireworks cruises are also able to receive tips.
Plan to tip them $2-5/person.
When to tip at Disney World FAQs
Can I tip with a gift card?
In some instances (like when you are dining), yes. But definitely not everywhere. It is best to keep some small bills on you if you know you'll be in one of the situations listed above.
I had the best Cast Member at Dumbo. Can I tip them?
In most cases (outside of the list above) Cast Members can't accept tips. However, they definitely can accept compliments. If you had an interaction with a Cast Member that went above and beyond consider thanking them in other ways than a tip.
What about my bus driver?
Monorail and bus drivers should not be tipped, but if you have a great experience you should definitely leave them a compliment at Guest Services.
Tipping is automatic for groups of 6+. Will my little ones count toward the 6?
Disney does automatically charge 18% tip on groups of 6+, but it's hard to know if kids under 3 count toward that total since they often don't order their own meals.
The answer as to whether they count toward the 6 is not very definitive, because this policy is not enforced consistently throughout Disney World. So the answer to the question is "sometimes."
You could always talk to your server at the beginning of the meal to find out how they plan to do it. If you feel that your little one shouldn't count, you could try to request that up front, though there's no guarantee on how they'll end up handling it.
I am not sure if I can tip this Cast Member. What should I do?
Ask them! There are other situations where you may have an interaction with a Cast Member that can be tipped so it is always good to ask. Concierge Desk Cast Members, golf caddies, fishing boat captains - these are all Cast Members that can receive tips so when in doubt, ask!
Video: 5 times you should tip at Disney World
Have any other questions about when to tip at Disney World? Let us know in the comments .