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When traveling to Hawaii, using valet parking can make navigating busy hotels and resorts much easier. But how much should you plan to tip the valet attendant? Getting the tip amount right is important to show your appreciation for good service.

If you’re short on time, here’s the quick answer: The standard tip amount for valet parking attendants in Hawaii is $2-5 per vehicle. Consider tipping on the higher end of $5 for exceptional service or luxury resorts and hotels.

In this comprehensive guide, we’ll cover everything you need to know about tipping valet staff in Hawaii, including:

Average Valet Tip Amount in Hawaii

Standard $2-5 tip

The standard tip for valet parking attendants in Hawaii is typically $2-5 when you pick up your car. This covers the basic service of parking and retrieving your vehicle. According to a survey by TripAdvisor, the average valet tipping amount across the United States is around $3-5 per use.

For quick restaurant stops or basic hotel drop-offs in Hawaii, $2-3 is considered an acceptable tipping rate.

Tipping more for luxury hotels

If you are staying at high-end resorts or luxury hotels in popular areas like Waikiki, it is customary to tip valet staff more generously. Bell staff and parking attendants rely heavily on tips as a major part of their compensation.

An appropriate valet tipping rate would be around $5-10 when first handing over your car, and another $5 upon picking it up. Porters may also help unload a significant amount of luggage, warranting an additional tip of $5-20 depending on the quantity of bags and assistance provided.

Tipping less for quick stops

If you are briefly running into a store or restaurant, generally $1-2 is considered an adequate tipping amount for valet service. Quick stops mean less work for the attendant parking and retrieving your car.

Similarly, if the attendant simply keeps your car with others awaiting pick-up in a service driveway rather than formally parking it, $2 would suffice. Use your best judgment – tipping valets more substantially supports tourism workers and reflects well on visitors enjoying Hawaiian culture and hospitality.

As they say in Hawaii – “no need tip heavy, small kine fine!”

Other Factors That Impact Tipping Amount

Time of service

The time of day or night when valet services are utilized can impact tip amounts. Late night services often warrant higher tips, as attendants are working less convenient hours (source). Services on weekends or holidays may also justify increased tips.

Having empathy and acknowledging the effort to accommodate off-peak requests is reasonable.

Number of bags

As more luggage and belongings require transport, the courtesy tip often increases. While a solo traveler with a small carry-on may tip $2-5, someone checking multiple heavy suitcases or equipment could tip $10+ to properly value the workload.

Though arbitrary bag counts shouldn’t solely dictate tips, reasonably factoring burdensome baggage can show gratitude for the labor.

Level of service

When attendants provide exceptional service like careful handling of valuables, personal greetings, amenity assistance (with kids/elders), or waiting patiently for delayed arrivals, boosted tips can convey appreciation.

Those going above-and-beyond, despite weather, crowds, or other challenges also deserve recognition. However, don’t feel compelled to overtip unremarkable baseline service either. As with any tip-based role, customizing for individual situations makes sense.

Tipping Etiquette and Customs in Hawaii

When to Tip

In Hawaii, it is customary to tip service workers such as hotel staff, taxi drivers, tour guides, and valet parking attendants. Tips are expected for good service as wages in service industries tend to be lower.

Locals recommend tipping at the time the service is performed rather than waiting until the end. Some common tipping guidelines are:

  • Bellhops/Hotel Porters: $1-2 per bag
  • Housekeeping: $2-5 per night
  • Taxi Drivers: 15-20% of fare
  • Valet Parking Attendants: $2-5 per vehicle

Cash vs Card Tipping

Cash tips are generally preferred in Hawaii as this allows the staff to receive the money directly instead of waiting for payday or tip pools. However, card tips are still appreciated if that is all you have. Some key pointers:

  • Carry small bills ($1, $5) to tip in cash when possible
  • When paying by card, write in the tip amount instead of selecting a percentage
  • If no tip line is available, state you will be leaving a cash tip for good service

Tip Sharing Among Staff

Most hotels and tourism companies in Hawaii have tip sharing policies to spread tips evenly among all staff. For example, valet attendants may share a portion of their tips with bellhops, housekeepers, front desk, and other staff. This encourages friendly customer service from all employees.

Before stiffing on a tip because of one bad interaction, keep in mind other innocent staff could be impacted. When possible, discuss any issues with a manager first.

Valet Alternatives To Reduce Costs


Self-parking can save you money compared to using valet parking services in Hawaii. Many hotels, restaurants, and attractions offer self-parking options, often at a fraction of the cost of valet parking.

The average self-parking rate at Waikiki hotels is around $15-25 per day compared to $30-40 for valet parking.

Self-parking does require you to find a spot and walk further to your destination. But the cost savings can be worthwhile, especially on longer visits. Some handy tips:

  • Check self-parking rates before you go and compare to valet fees
  • Arrive earlier when spots are more available
  • Be prepared to walk 5-10 minutes from the parking area

With a little planning, self-parking can give you easy access to your vehicle while saving some vacation funds for other fun Hawaii activities!

Public transportation

Public transportation like TheBus in Oahu or the Maui Bus can eliminate parking costs altogether. These bus systems offer extensive routes across main island areas often for $2-4 per ride. While not as quick as driving yourself, public buses give you time to relax en route while taking in the lush scenery.

Other transportation options include:

  • TheBoat inter-island ferry
  • Rideshare services
  • Taxis
  • Walking in more compact areas like Waikiki

With proper planning to map routes and fares, public transit can drastically reduce transportation costs compared to renting a car or paying for valet parking every time. It’s also a greener way to travel around the islands!

Ride share services

Ridesharing apps like Uber and Lyft operate on most major Hawaii islands. While not always cheaper than driving yourself, rideshares can be convenient and affordable depending on the length of your ride. Costs vary based on factors like:

  • Base rideshare rates: Around $1 booking fee plus $1-2 per mile
  • Surge pricing – higher fares during peak demand
  • Tip for driver (15-20% is typical)

Doing a quick cost estimate on the apps can give you an idea of potential rideshare costs compared to typical $30+ valet parking fees. For shorter hops around town, ridesharing could save you some dollars.

It also gives you a chance to kick back and enjoy the views without having to self-park and walk long distances.


Tipping valets for parking service is customary in Hawaii to show gratitude for the convenience. While $2-5 per car is standard, adjusting your tip based on factors like hotel luxury status and level of service can help meet expectations.

Understanding the tipping culture in Hawaii is key to avoiding frustration on either side.

With this guide, you can now tip valet staff appropriately on your Hawaii travels. Focus instead on taking in the island paradise surroundings!

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