Moving to the United States is an adventure for anyone. I moved from Australia in 2017 and I didn’t think anything of it because they speak the same language and with the number of movies I’ve seen set in New York, I was confident that I was just a hop, skip, and jump away from becoming settled… How wrong I was.

I wrote this as a guest post for CreditStacks, so you can read the whole thing on their blog!

1. Tipping

Coming from a culture where tipping is not expected (at all) and moving to one where it’s expected at every turn is a real eye-opener.

When you first arrive, if you’re not used to it, it’s going to take you some getting used to and you’re probably going to say “I don’t want to” sometimes, but you have to know: that’s not an option.

So how do you do it properly?

In New York the easy way to calculate a tip is this:

  1. If you’re drinking at a bar, and your drinks are beer or wine: $1/drink is fine (leave it every time you get a drink, unless you’ve got a tab open)
  2. For everything else, the easy rule of thumb is: 15% suggests you barely enjoyed it. 18% is the common-practice “standard” tip. 20%+ suggests that you loved it and you want to thank the staff for what they did.

An easy way in New York to work out the tip is to double the tax and slightly round up. Tax is a little less than 9%, so you’re going to end up somewhere very close to 18%.

Don’t be that person who stiffs the waiter at the end of a meal. You live here now!

2. Accents & Language

So it turns out that my 2’s and 3’s apparently sound similar when I’m on the phone. For the life of me I don’t understand, but it’s become very confusing when reading out my credit card number.

Want to keep reading and find out numbers 3, 4, and 5? Keep reading my guest blog on CreditStacks!