A Guide to Tipping your Private Vacation Chef

Every family dreams of an in-home chef to provide luxury meals regularly. However, a full-time chef may come with exorbitant costs that are difficult to satisfy over time. Thus, some will decide to host a meal with a private chef experience to commemorate a special occasion instead. But how do you appropriately tip a private chef?  Review a guide to tipping your private vacation chef below.

When traveling in larger groups, pursuing new culinary experiences is easy when booking a chef within the area.

Booking an Independent Chef

Whether you’re booking a chef for one meal or an entire day, ensure that you have the space for it. A hotel room won’t usually be capable of housing an entire kitchen, hence, you may be better off booking a suite or event space. If you’ve booked your luxury vacation through a travel curator, they may be able to help book your private chef experience.

To decide on how much to tip your private chef, first consider what comprises your package altogether. Though a private chef will cost less than a catering company, they may charge extra fees for curating a menu according to your tastes and dietary restrictions, serving multiple courses, traveling to your home or venue, purchasing ingredients, and presenting the meals.

In most cases, private chefs will charge you per head, increasing the price according to the quality of ingredients or the number of courses. As a rule of thumb, a 10% tip is a good place to start. If the chef is working alongside a server, you may want to increase your tip to 20% or at least 15%, encouraging your private chef to share the gratuity.

Booking a Chef with Their Own Business

Some private chefs will run their own business and choose not to accept a tip. This is because it isn’t customary to tip the proprietor of a business. If this is the case, you can choose to forego tipping entirely or present your private chef with a token of appreciation through a bottle of wine or whiskey.

Booking a Hotel Private Chef

In most cases, hotel private chefs will already come with a gratuity indicated in your final bill. These may be in the form of an 18% service charge. If your chef goes above and beyond to provide you with an unforgettable experience, you can add a tip of 5%.

Tipping Logistics

As far as tipping goes, most will conventionally serve gratuity after the meal is over. If you already have an idea of the meal cost beforehand, you can set your tip aside in an envelope to hand over to your private chef before they leave. Most diners will tip in cash, although including a tip in a single cheque is also practiced often.


Though tipping isn’t necessary, it’s always appreciated by your private chef and servers. Especially on vacation, there’s no better way to experience the local food industry than by treating your guests to a memorable private chef experience. We hope you find value in a guide to tipping your private vacation chef.

Whether in need of a private chef in Savannah, Los Angeles, Austin, or anywhere across
America, we at Food Fire + Knives solve your hosting problems with a delicious private chef
experience. Let us know the date and cuisine—we’ll take care of the rest!

Published By Michael Casciello


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