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Thread: Are demands for tipping getting out of control?

  1. #1
    Master of New Adventures!
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    Are demands for tipping getting out of control?

    Look, I consider myself an excellent tipper -- 20% for an average restaurant server, 30% most of the time because I empathize with how much servers depend on tips and I like it when I get great service. (As an aside, I've found when one gets a reputation for tipping 30% it helps to create "great service" so it's a win-win.) And I always tip a couple bucks at the car wash. But it seems to me that lately tipping and demands for tip have gotten out of control. This first started happening during the pandemic and I got it and went with it because I knew people were having a tough time and I wanted to help. But now it seems to be everywhere. The cashier at the package liquor store I shop at has a tip jar displayed prominently. What? For ringing up my six-pack? Same at my dry cleaner. For what? Handing me my clothes? I get servers, but am I supposed to tip everyone, everywhere in the world who is receiving a fair hourly salary for just doing their job?

    Another thing, I'm not crazy about the digital tipping devices that you're confronted with to input your tip as you're paying for your restaurant bill. First, I don't like to be told what to tip, even if the digital device gives me alternatives and, second, I don't like doing it with people hovering all around me. A couple weeks ago a guy loudly said, "Geez, you tipped 30%!" It's nobody's business.

    This stuff really irks me because it feel it's intrusive. Am I overreacting, being a complaining older dude or am I right?

  2. #2
    Heroic Warrior TITAN's Avatar
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    Tell me about it! I'm just buying one pretzel at Auntie Anne's and a tip screen comes up! Come on!!! It's not like your coming back and forth to my table,filling up my drinks and bringing me my food! Pretzels are already too expensive as it is!!
    Last edited by TITAN; March 26, 2023 at 01:20pm.

  3. #3
    Master of New Adventures!
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    Amen. I'm glad to see I'm not the only one who feels this way. I'm just hoping you're in your 20s or 30s and not an elder dude like me...

    Quote Originally Posted by TITAN View Post
    Tell me about it! I'm just buying one pretzel at Auntie Anne's and a tip screen comes up! Come on!!! It's not like your coming back and forth to my table,filling up my drinks and bringing me my food! Pretzels are already too expensive as it is!!

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    Heroic Warrior TITAN's Avatar
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    Nope! 49!

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    Heroic Warrior Dinobot's Avatar
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    I know a lot of businesses have those machines with the tipping screens, but I won't tip for a service I don't normally tip for, i.e. buying a single pretzel or slice of pizza at a stand up. I may make an exception for a small business.

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    Quote Originally Posted by TITAN View Post
    Nope! 49!

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    Heroic Warrior ProteinNerd's Avatar
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    Iím so glad we just donít tip 99% of the time here. Businesses have to pay a decent enough wage that service workers donít need tips to survive.

    Now sure, if I go to a nice restaurant and get great service I might tip them a few $$ but there is no societal expectation and I donít feel bad afterwards if it was just ďokayĒ service and I didnít give anything.

    Itís always just seemed a way for business owners to shaft their employees to me and pass the responsibility of actually paying their employees a living wage/salary onto their customers while they laugh all the way to the bank.
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    Heroic Warrior Riddle of Steel's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TITAN View Post
    Tell me about it! I'm just buying one pretzel at Auntie Anne's and a tip screen comes up! Come on!!! It's not like your coming back and forth to my table,filling up my drinks and bringing me my food! Pretzels are already too expensive as it is!!
    Haha so true! I forget where I was at not that long ago, but it was a similar circumstance. I purchased something stupid like a pretzel and the tip screen came up. I felt like mentioning how ridiculous it was to ask people for tips on such a thing, but at the end of the day the poor guy behind the counter has nothing to do with so why bother him about it.

    Also, it was just a rinkie dink stand like Auntie Anne's that did it so it wasn't like it was just integrated into the POS at some restaurant or something and I happened to buy something small.

  9. #9
    Heroic Warrior Brasco's Avatar
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    Youíre not overreacting at all. I get annoyed when I pick up a pizza and they have a line for a tip. Call me old fashioned but I only tip when I go out to eat. Even at the grocery store when I go to self check out they ask for donations. Granted thatís not a tip but come on
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    Iím from the uk and tipping has never really been a thing except for a restaurant where you receive 100% table service. But I have noticed now that a lot of places have businesses have started displaying tip jars and screens. Here 10% is seen as a fair tip on a bill. I worked at a table service restaurant once upon a time and I was top tip earner, could easily pull in an extra £100 a shift. No one could understand it, but my secret was 10% of my tips went to the kitchen into a pot for them. Which meant my orders went to the top of the list and made to perfection because my tips meant the kitchen staff got at least a round of drinks a week on me. Plus Iím great at making people feel special.
    Same as when I was a holiday rep, I could guarantee that the all those euros that werenít worth exchanging at the end of a holiday went in my pocket. I think one season I didnít even have to dip into my wages, the tips paid for my nights out and any food and drink that wasnít comped.

  11. #11
    Master of New Adventures!
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    Brilliant!

    You have great business sense and an intuitive grasp of how to network. I wouldn't be surprised to learn you've opened your own restaurant.

    As an aside, where do you live in the UK? Kim and I are fans of London (they blow bugles when Kim walks into the Dr. Marten's flagship Camden store) the Lake District, Cotswolds of course, just about anywhere Ireland. TTFN.

    Quote Originally Posted by dan1980 View Post
    I’m from the uk and tipping has never really been a thing except for a restaurant where you receive 100% table service. But I have noticed now that a lot of places have businesses have started displaying tip jars and screens. Here 10% is seen as a fair tip on a bill. I worked at a table service restaurant once upon a time and I was top tip earner, could easily pull in an extra £100 a shift. No one could understand it, but my secret was 10% of my tips went to the kitchen into a pot for them. Which meant my orders went to the top of the list and made to perfection because my tips meant the kitchen staff got at least a round of drinks a week on me. Plus I’m great at making people feel special.
    Same as when I was a holiday rep, I could guarantee that the all those euros that weren’t worth exchanging at the end of a holiday went in my pocket. I think one season I didn’t even have to dip into my wages, the tips paid for my nights out and any food and drink that wasn’t comped.
    Last edited by Heeeere's Olesker!; March 26, 2023 at 06:59pm.

  12. #12
    SoH Supporter He-Dad's Avatar
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    I feel tipping is out dated. I hate tipping based off the bill price too. I mean if I go to a fancy place and get bad service and leave 10% that's still more than 20 or 30% at a cheaper place. Also its the same amount of work wether we order 2 $10 specials or 2 $30 steaks. Why should that dictate the tip? And yeah, tips at drive thru restaurants or pick up places always bothers me as you didn't do anything special. Ya put it in a bag. I wish American restaurants would just pay their servers a decent wage and not rely on tips. Tips can then be left for above and beyond and not just doing the minimum of your job. (And yes I was a waiter once and yes, I relied on tips to survive and busted my butt to make really good money. However, I would have preferred to have a guaranteed living wage)

  13. #13
    Marvel Guru Bonehead's Avatar
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    It's definitely gotten out of hand. I only tip waitresses/waiters and bartenders. THAT'S IT.

    I actually got into a fight at a store with an employee over this. I don't want to name the chain but I went to get some food and when I went to pay the cashier, she asked if I wanted to leave a tip. I said politely "no." She then went on a rant about how servers needed those tips to make decent living. Mind you, she was only a cashier. She got loud and tried to make a scene. This caused a manager to come over and ask what was going on. I explained the situation and then she said the same thing as the employee only she was more polite. I demanded a refund and walked out of the place. Considering the illness outbreaks associated with the chain, and this incident, I will never go back.

  14. #14
    President of Primus Ornclown's Avatar
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    Where I live, most restaurants have a "happy people fee." No lie. (This is ensure places can stay well-staffed and become more desirable for those seeking employment.)

    So, you pay for the meal and service with an additional percentage already added to the bill. Okay, fine.

    But, they still leave space for a write-in tip on the receipt.


    I read a good article about how tipping has become outrageous... everyone from McDonalds to Grease Monkey asks for an extra percentage. During the pandemic and after the lock-down, many businesses were taking advantage of covid to squeeze more money out of people. These are people who are already being payed for the work that they do... and most (in not all) restaurants where I live pay everyone - from bussers, to waiters, to hosts - a normal salary. In other words, these employees are not dependent on tips.

    For a long time, Starbucks removed the tipping from their payment screen and I was so happy... but, recently, it has returned.




    With all that said, I still tip between 20 - 25% when my wife and I go to a nice place. She thinks I'm crazy (she was the one who pointed me to the article I mentioned) and usually tips 15% - begrudgingly, lol. After all, she says it's like giving an allowance to kids... aren't food, shelter, medicine, and clothes enough? Now I have to pay you to pick up the dog poop and mow the lawn?
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    Quote Originally Posted by Heeeere's Olesker! View Post
    Brilliant!


    As an aside, where do you live in the UK? Kim and I are fans of London (they blow bugles when Kim walks into the Dr. Marten's flagship Camden store) the Lake District, Cotswolds of course, just about anywhere Ireland. TTFN.
    Iím not a city mouse, Iím a country mouse. Just a medium sized town about an hour or so drive from London. We are pretty much dead centre of England. Nothing too exciting in our are but the village pretty much next door to us is the birthplace of the Dr Marten and the same county that housed the factory that inspired the musical Kinky Boots.

  16. #16
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    Got 0 issue with tipping.. if I have a lil extra or some change I pay it forward. Dealing with the public and the average "customer" is pretty horrible...
    I've worked with customers/the public a long time ago( teens and 20ies, I'm 45 now) and it was hell on earth at times. I will always toss them something or have them keep my change , a buck or 2 can go a long way for someone.
    Done

  17. #17
    Life is good Dice's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bonehead View Post
    ... she asked if I wanted to leave a tip. I said politely "no." She then went on a rant about how servers needed those tips to make decent living... .
    THIS is the problem. Restaurants and food service want the customer to pay for their employees. It's ridiculous to me that any server basically needs to hope people tip them in order to get paid for the day.

    The real problem (IMO based on what a restaurant owner and a popular franchise owner told me) is that food cost have gone up, the cost of employment has gone up. And unless you have a very popular franchise or restaurant, you can't own one and make the profits people saw in the past.

    I don't know if this applies to everywhere but here in my area of the world, Applebees and O'charley's both employ work release non-violent felons as the main cooks and dish washers.
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  18. #18
    Council Elder zodak74's Avatar
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    As a life long coffee professional who primarily toiled in the world of independently owned mom & pop style locally owned businesses (with a handful of bigger names in the mix over the years as well), tips made up about half of my income for years and years and years. They're vital to a lot of folks in the service industry. Living in a state where the minimum wage is still a loathsome 7.25 an hour doesn't help much... thankfully my days of putting up with those scenarios is long long behind me. I still keep abreast of who's paying what around these parts in this field (relentlessly job hunting during 2020 after covid hit just sort of morphed into part of my daily online routine, I guess. Plus I'm nosy and want to know what other businesses are offering) and while most places have started (finally) paying a bit above that, there's still some... I wouldn't call them chains per se, but they do have more than a few shops across town and in surrounding areas... that still list their starting wages as 7.25, which is insane to me. So tips for folks who work in those situations is... well, essential to their survival, as nobody can live off of that kind of crap hourly pay.
    It's weird, we seem to have quickly pivoted from "oh these poor people suffer so much, let's go above and beyond when it comes to tipping to reward them for their essential services during this awful pandemic!" to articles online that are like "don't feel guilted into tipping, it's gotten out of control! Just say no!". It's like, that era of generosity sure didn't last long . But I also haven't seen this happen much in my time out and about in the world.

    My take on it is... whatever you used to tip for (coffee, dining out, that sort of thing), keep at it and tip what you're comfortable with. But if you're going places where this was never a thing and suddenly they're flipping the screen for you to tip, again just do what you're comfortable with. If that's not tipping, that's fine. There shouldn't even be a conversation about it at the register, from either party. I haven't experienced any employee outrage (yet), and frankly as a service industry lifer I find that behavior to be completely unprofessional and immature (you just NEVER call out people for not tipping, just as you should probably just play it cool when they go above and beyond and drop you a twenty out of the blue... like, don't be a freak about it and make it awkward for everyone behind them, in either scenario, you know?). And customers just really shouldn't get into it with the staff. The staff aren't the ones making the rules here.

    It does suck that businesses choose to put the onus on the customer to supplement their employees' wages, but unless things ever change on a nationwide level (and they won't), tipping's just always going to be a thing and when you choose to go out for services, you're going to encounter it.
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  19. #19
    +2 Against Harpies Sword2Blanket's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by He-Dad View Post
    I wish American restaurants would just pay their servers a decent wage and not rely on tips.
    THIS.

    Not only do we need to reverse course on this more recent toxic trend, we as a society need to work towards abolishing tipping altogether. Workers should have a fair, set, reliable wage and the prices should be whatever they need to be to accommodate that.

    Quote Originally Posted by Bonehead View Post
    It's definitely gotten out of hand. I only tip waitresses/waiters and bartenders. THAT'S IT.

    I actually got into a fight at a store with an employee over this. I don't want to name the chain but I went to get some food and when I went to pay the cashier, she asked if I wanted to leave a tip. I said politely "no." She then went on a rant about how servers needed those tips to make decent living. Mind you, she was only a cashier. She got loud and tried to make a scene. This caused a manager to come over and ask what was going on. I explained the situation and then she said the same thing as the employee only she was more polite. I demanded a refund and walked out of the place. Considering the illness outbreaks associated with the chain, and this incident, I will never go back.
    Quote Originally Posted by Dice View Post
    THIS is the problem. Restaurants and food service want the customer to pay for their employees. It's ridiculous to me that any server basically needs to hope people tip them in order to get paid for the day.

    The real problem (IMO based on what a restaurant owner and a popular franchise owner told me) is that food cost have gone up, the cost of employment has gone up. And unless you have a very popular franchise or restaurant, you can't own one and make the profits people saw in the past.

    I don't know if this applies to everywhere but here in my area of the world, Applebees and O'charley's both employ work release non-violent felons as the main cooks and dish washers.

    This is the unethical scam that tipping allows businesses to pull on their customers. Business owners basically get to say "Subsidize my business or else the pleb starves; either way, I will get the profits I want."

    The fact that even cashiers and the like have been convinced that the onus is on the goodwill of random customers for their living and not their employer is absolutely disturbing to me.

    Quote Originally Posted by zodak74 View Post
    Living in a state where the minimum wage is still a loathsome 7.25 an hour doesn't help much...
    This shouldn't be a thing either, but I fear that would definitely be wading off in to Tar Swamp territory.
    Last edited by Sword2Blanket; March 27, 2023 at 10:37am.

  20. #20
    Not my Tempo Fendi's Avatar
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    My issue here is I doubt the waiters or the cooks or anyone would received the tips judging on percentage of the total value of the receipt. While tipping is not common here I rather give the tip to the service personally than giving extra tip on the executive who have 3 or 4 bank accounts.

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  21. #21
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    You make a great point -- and I confess it's one neither I or nor many people, I would guess, have ever thought about -- that it takes the same amount of work to serve a customer who's ordered a cheeseburger and one who has ordered a filet mignon. It begs the question, however, how do we deal with that? If you tip the same percentage for both meals, then, to your point, you're overtipping for the filet mignon. But if you cut back on the percentage for the filet mignon you look like a piker.



    Quote Originally Posted by He-Dad View Post
    I feel tipping is out dated. I hate tipping based off the bill price too. I mean if I go to a fancy place and get bad service and leave 10% that's still more than 20 or 30% at a cheaper place. Also its the same amount of work wether we order 2 $10 specials or 2 $30 steaks. Why should that dictate the tip? And yeah, tips at drive thru restaurants or pick up places always bothers me as you didn't do anything special. Ya put it in a bag. I wish American restaurants would just pay their servers a decent wage and not rely on tips. Tips can then be left for above and beyond and not just doing the minimum of your job. (And yes I was a waiter once and yes, I relied on tips to survive and busted my butt to make really good money. However, I would have preferred to have a guaranteed living wage)
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    Quote Originally Posted by dan1980 View Post
    Iím not a city mouse, Iím a country mouse. Just a medium sized town about an hour or so drive from London. We are pretty much dead centre of England. Nothing too exciting in our are but the village pretty much next door to us is the birthplace of the Dr Marten and the same county that housed the factory that inspired the musical Kinky Boots.

  22. #22
    Heroic Warrior wyldman11's Avatar
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    And then i went and read the history of tipping in the US.
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  23. #23
    Marvel Guru Bonehead's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by wyldman11 View Post
    And then i went and read the history of tipping in the US.
    Wait till you read chapter 2: The History of Cow Tipping.

  24. #24
    SoH Supporter He-Dad's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Heeeere's Olesker! View Post
    You make a great point -- and I confess it's one neither I or nor many people, I would guess, have ever thought about -- that it takes the same amount of work to serve a customer who's ordered a cheeseburger and one who has ordered a filet mignon. It begs the question, however, how do we deal with that? If you tip the same percentage for both meals, then, to your point, you're overtipping for the filet mignon. But if you cut back on the percentage for the filet mignon you look like a piker.
    Ive kinda decided that I max out at $10 unless the really went above and beyond. Most the time the service I've been getting is closer to a $5 lol. How this plays out. We go to a supper club on Sundays where we get a half a chicken, two baked potatoes, coleslaw, stuffing, and a grasshopper for desert and the bill is $10.50 a person. So even with drinks (usually an old fashion for the mrs and I) the bill is under $50 and I usually leave a 10 as the service is always great. Last night at Applebee's the bill was around $80 and the service was ok but not stellar so they got a $7. I don't care what that makes me look like, I paid accordingly to the level of service I got.

  25. #25
    Pillar of the Community hadley's Avatar
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    Itís one of those things that I wish didnít exist but I comply with because raging against the machine only hurts the person who helped me and makes me feel like a complete crapheel.

    I occasionally get lunch at a burrito place and when you pay with a card the screen pops up with ď$1, $5, CustomĒ. I always tip a buck. There is no scenario in my life such as it is today where one dollar matters to me. Nor is there for a fiver, but a $15 burrito is where I draw the line.

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