Its entirely up to you. You might consider tipping if you feel the service has been better than expected. Maybe the driver was extra helpful, maybe you had a great conversation with him, maybe he let you play your own tunes on Spotify. There are loads of reasons you might tip a driver. Personally, I never expect a tip, and if I get one it still surprises me a little bit.
How much is appropriate?
I’ve had all manner of tips, from 10p to £70. To me usually around 10% of the fare seems to be an amount that feels easy to accept. Whilst recognising you think the driver went a bit above and beyond. Personally I find large tips a little uncomfortable, tonight I got tipped about 30% on a fare, its appreciated for sure, but I felt slightly awkward accepting such a large tip.
Do tips make much difference?
Absolutely they do, lets consider a driver who completes 100 jobs in a week. If he averages 50p in tips per customer (depending how good the driver is that could be a very conservative estimate) that would give an extra £50 at the end of the week. In tonight’s shift I have £10.50 in tips that I can recall in 6 jobs.
To be clear though, as a driver I don’t ever expect a tip, I understand some people may not be able to afford a tip, some might not want to, some maybe didn’t enjoy the service etc. Its fine not to tip your taxi driver, only do so if you are able and feel the service warrants it.
As a side note, I pick up a lot of business customer’s from the station, who ask for a receipt because they are claiming back on company expenses (This is fine, its just part of the job). Lets say the fare is £8.50, many will say “write me out a receipt for £10”. Others will take the receipt for £8.50 hand over a £10 note and say “keep the change.” I’m not sure what it says about me, but I always feel slightly better when the tip has come out of the customer’s own pocket.