Tips = Propinas, Buenos Aires
One sure fire sign that you are a foreigner in Buenos Aires is how you tip. Being an American I am used to tipping 15% of the bill for just about anything. At first you will feel terrible when your Argentine friends advise you that you are not supposed to leave a tip at all in some situations. The standard tip is 10% and it is often not that much. I felt cheap giving such a small tip at first. A tip isn't always necessary, but it will always be appreciated. I always tip well when the service is very good
-tips are paid in cash
-do not leave money intended for a tip sitting on a table or bar, it may be appropriated by someone other than who you intended it for.
Restaurants- Standard tip is 10%. If the service was rude or unacceptable a lot of locals will leave 5% if they leave anything at all. 10% is safe. Don't worry, you won't have a waiter coming after you if you leave a small tip. This is true of cafes where the waiter brings you your coffee or tea or whatever you drink. 10% is standard.
Taxi- it is not necessary to give the cab driver a tip. They don't expect one. Rounding up is good. Do NOT pay a taxi driver with large bills or credit cards. Of course, if the cab driver helps you with your luggage it is good to give them something. A friend told me that the remis drivers should be tipped 5-10%.
I always gave a tip to luggage handlers at the bus station. I remember a friend mentioning to me that bags sometimes got "misplaced". Just a small bill will do.
Tour guides- On bus tours guides will often get a 10% tip. However, smaller groups that have one or two guides that do a lot of work (particularly bilingual) we would always collect from the other members of the group to give the guides a nice tip.
The cubierto or cover charge that you may find on your restaurant bill is not a tip. It is a charge many sitdown restaurants charge and is usually printed somewhere on the menu (not always easy to find though).
I have never seen a restaurant in BsAs add a tip to the bill (for smaller parties anyway). It is normal in Argentina to tip around 10% although tourist often tip more.
Tips are not included on bills
The local custom is to leave a 10% of what you had paid on your bill to the waiter/waitress at restaurants. If you paid $arg 50 you should leave a $arg 5.00 tip.
Anyway not everyone leaves tips. For example, if the service was a disaster or the food was horrible! you might not leave any tips, or you can leave less than the 10%
Some people gives taxi drivers tips but it's not a local custom.
IF you have your hair cut in Buenos Aires, you can give a tip around $arg 5.00 to the hairdresser.
The most common place where we leave tips in Argentina is just in Restaurants, but you can give a tip to anyone who you think has done a good work or good service.
In general 10% of the amount of the bill is left in cafeterias and restaurants. Doormen, porters, and ushers in cinemas and theatres are also generally tipped. In most of the places they don't accept tips included in the credit card, only cash...
Generalmente se deja el 10 % de propina en cafes, restaurantes. A los porteros y acomodadores en cines y teatros usualmente se les da propina.
En la mayoria de los lugares no se acepta el pago de la propina en la tarjeta de credito, debe ser en efectivo...