Here Are the 10 Worst U.S. States for Tipping


Tipping culture in the U.S. has seemingly gotten out of control in recent years. With the federal minimum wage for tipped workers sitting at just $2.13, these service workers often rely on tips to be able to make ends meet—a phenomenon not seen in other countries where customers leave a small tip to commend an employee for good service. 

Across the U.S., customers in different states have a different idea of how much to tip and how much they’re able to add on top of their bills. A new survey conducted by USA Today examined tipping culture in the U.S. and found some of the best and worst states for tipping in the country, as well as other factors that play a role in determining those numbers like age and income level. 

Overall, the average tip percentage in the U.S. is 17.94 percent. Millennials tend to be the best-tipping generation, the study found, with an average of 18.18 percent tip on bills. Perhaps most unsurprisingly, tippers’ income level aligns with their average tip amount: 15.04 percent for people who earn less than $30,000 annually and 20.66 percent for people who make more than $120,000 a year. 

Illinois was found to be the state with the worst tippers, with the average amount being just 14.22 percent. As for which state has the best tippers, California takes the crown. 

The top 10 worst tipping states are spread across the country, with many of them landlocked in the Midwest and the South. 

  1. Illinois (14.22%)
  2. Mississippi (14.98%)
  3. South Carolina (15.13%)
  4. New Mexico (15.32%)
  5. Tennessee (15.40%)
  6. Oklahoma (15.51%)
  7. Wisconsin (15.78%)
  8. North Dakota (16.05%)
  9. West Virginia (16.16%)
  10. Utah (16.23%)

The best tipping states, meanwhile, span both coasts. 

  1. California (22.69%)
  2. Missouri (22.05%)
  3. Florida (21.68%)
  4. Arizona (20.66%)
  5. Rhode Island (20.50%)
  6. Washington (20.23%)
  7. Colorado (19.85%)
  8. Pennsylvania (19.64%)
  9. Connecticut (19.14%)
  10. Georgia (19.00%)

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