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Tipping In The Us

Discussion in 'North America' started by Ava, Sep 27, 2016.

  1. Ava

    Ava Member

    As a frequent visitor to the US, I still can't get the hang of tipping. You seem to have to tip everywhere and I do find it off putting when I am trying to relax and enjoy myself without having to be anxious about when to tip and if I have enough.

    I didn't think it was necessary to tip housekeeping, especially as it's each day and sometimes they don't do much, and also a server that was okay expects a tip of at least 15 percent. It all adds up and makes visiting the US costly, and as a visitor you don't want to appear tight, but knowing how much and when to tip can be a nightmare, or is it only me that thinks this?
  2. reverserewind

    reverserewind Member

    I love the US but that's the main thing I hate about it. Basically, it's just giving people free money for nothing. We all know that all these waiters/waitresses are getting paid by their employer, so why the hell should I give them extra money If they are just doing their job. Screw that.
  3. reverserewind

    reverserewind Member

    However, If I need to get away from that... I usually do this:

    If the meal/service costs $9.30 = I'll just give $9.50, so I don't really care about that. Or, maybe, even straight $10. I don't really care about one dollar. However, I'm not gonna slide extra 3-5 dollars just for the sake of tipping.
  4. reverserewind

    reverserewind Member

    Btw, as a traveller you have zero things to worry about. You will never see all those people again. And all those "offended" employees who do nasty things If you don't tip usually get fired. They are stupid as hell.
  5. Ava

    Ava Member

    I heard about that and see it as so unfair, that people get fired if they don't get enough tips. Sometimes people tip not only on the service, but the whole experience, so if food wasn't available or was bad, it's not the servers fault.

    I actually used to live in the US so in some place that were local it was more of a factor about tipping, or if I am with family members who do visit somewhere regularly where they are recognized, one needs to tip as a local which is hard to figure out. It's never that simple. In New York they tell me to double the tax!
  6. Miya

    Miya Active Member

    That's the ideal thing to do, but realistically speaking, they probably won't let you. Some restaurants require a tip of 15%. I remember when I was very little, my family ate at a restaurant and spent a lot of money. We tipped 10% instead of the required 15-20%. Basically even after we stepped out of the restaurant and were on our way to the car, the restaurant owner ran after us to get the extra 5% tip back. Tipping is, unfortunately, required in the U.S. and some restaurants will do everything they can (legally) to make you tip the amount they want.
  7. amelia88

    amelia88 Active Member

    Servers at a lot of restaurants get paid very, very little, and that's why tips are part of the culture here in the US. I'm talking like base wage is about $2-$3 an hour - not liveable at all without tips.

    My thoughts on it is always if you can't afford to tip, go and eat at McDonalds or another fast food type restaurant where tipping isn't a requirement. Or go to a supermarket and buy food there.
  8. Corzhens

    Corzhens Active Member

    My husband was the one who taught me on the rules of tipping. In Asian countries, it is not a regular thing except when you are in a fine dining restaurant. But with the hotel, we usually leave something for the maintenance people. In the US, the rule of tipping is something like 10% of the amount of the bill but in Asian countries, it can be 5% or even lower. When my husband was in California, his favorite diner was Denny's where he tips with some coins only. He said that it is like a fastfood where tipping is not mandatory but nevertheless, he still leaves something.
  9. Ava

    Ava Member

    Yes, but this is an American mentality that doesn't actually apply to the rest of the world. There are now new federal laws in regards to wages for tipping amounts, and several states do have a higher minimum cash wage such as California where it is $10, but in Georgia where there is no state minimum wage law the rate is $2.13.

    It can be a minefield for visitors, no wonder many don't wish to eat out because it causes stress.
  10. Miya

    Miya Active Member

    I don't think it's fair to say that people should eat elsewhere if they can't afford to (or don't want to) tip. Yes, servers get paid very little, but that doesn't mean it's the responsibility of the customers to make up for it.

    The problem with the American tipping system is that they REQUIRE you to pay a service tip. That means that even if I get terrible service, just by sitting down, I'm required to pay a service tip. I find that very unfair. If they have good service, I do not mind leaving a tip for them, but why am I required to pay extra if I am unsatisfied with the service? Furthermore, most restaurants require a 15% service charge and then they also expect you to leave some cash or extra at the table. That's just taking advantage of the customers, in my opinion.

    Yeah, it sucks that servers are underpaid. But instead of having the customers make up the difference, why not try to get the restaurants to actually pay servers better? The restaurants should be the one paying more, not the customers.
  11. Were you in a big group? A restaurant can only require you to pay a gratuity if you have large party of like six or more people, though different restaurants have a different number. If you were in a small group of four people, then they shouldn't have gone after you. Technically though, they can't legally enforce a gratuity because they are supposed to be voluntary and an add-on for good service. I would check to see if there was any signs when you cam in that told you that there was a auto-gratuity or service charge, if there is a sign up front, you chose to take your business there. But if there isn't, you should have just left saying the service was bad. If it's really bad, threaten them with a bad Yelp review. But if you have more than six people, you should have given them fifteen percent.
  12. If you're in a big group, of course you're expected to pay a gratuity even if the service is bad. It used to be twelve percent but in the last couple years, it's grown. If you pay the gratuity, you're not expected to pay extra on top of that. Any server that tells you otherwise, is lying. My sister worked as a waitress for years and would never allow her customers to pay on top of the mandatory gratuity. If you're in a big group and you are getting bad service, complain to the manager, get paid for the service. Most restaurants though, the tip is a reflection of service. I live here and I don't tip every restaurant. I personally think it's outrageous that social justice warriors are shoving the fifteen percent down my throat. If the service is bad, I don't leave a tip and I don't go back. If it's okay, fiver percent is fine. And if it's great, it's ten. I grew up with great service getting ten percent. Right now, waitresses are just being greedy about the fifteen percent. A tip is voluntary unless you're in a big group over six people.
    Ava likes this.
  13. I have no problem with tipping when I go out eating in Thailand restaurants. For one, I know that the waiters and waitresses can never survive on their pay. So they depend on the tips to get by. However, I feel happy to tip because the service is always very good. If I go with a number of friends, there will be at least one waiter or waitress who is standing nearby to attend to our needs. Even if there's no one attending us personally, there are always staff near the counter who are always on the lookout for customers who signal.
  14. Miya

    Miya Active Member

    I'm going to have to say that I don't agree with you. If the service is bad, I should not be required to leave a tip. When I go to a restaurant to eat, I don't go in thinking that I have to pay for "service and food". I go to a restaurant for food and if the service is good, I will give a little extra. I didn't come in for service so if the service is bad, I should not have to pay extra for it.

    And yes, no server will say it is required to leave extra on top of the gratuity. But their actions show that they expect it. I've seen servers sigh at my mom as we're leaving the table because she only paid the 15% that was in the bill and left nothing at the table. I've seen servers who have looked at us wide-eyed because we left "only" $5 on top of the 15% included in the bill. So yes, no one will straight up say it, but they expect it.

    I am living in Japan now and there is no tipping system here. Servers are paid minimum wage and they do not get tips. If you leave a tip at the table, they will chase after you to give it back. The servers here are polite and they do their jobs happily. The mandatory tipping system in America only exists because the servers are paid below minimum. My point is that it shouldn't be up to the customers to make up for this difference. The restaurants should be the one taking care of this.
  15. reverserewind

    reverserewind Member

    Did some of the research. Yeah, that seems legit. As far as I understand, it's the federal law that allows paying below the minimum wage If tipping is common. That's kind of stupid and needs a change. However, that's already a part of the culture for nearly a century. Pretty hard to make a change. People are stubborn.
  16. reverserewind

    reverserewind Member

    As far as McDonlads is concerned, their staff gets paid properly. It's usually higher figures than the minimum wage, so they don't really need to be tipped. However, they wouldn't refuse to be, of course.

    btw, their food is terrible
  17. Ava

    Ava Member

    Yes, but it's a broken system that people want to fix, but the people who oppose it are those who earn big tips in the city such as New York. They don't do this as a career, but many make a couple of hundred of dollars in tips on a weekend while they are studying or acting. If it changed then they would struggle more. The fact is they don't think about all the small towns and places where people don't tip high amounts on expense accounts.

    Even so, these days a service charge doesn't always mean a tip. In some places it's a charge to cover things like a cloakroom, water, and a bread basket or olives. That's what a service charge can be classified as and not a gratuity.
  18. Miya

    Miya Active Member

    In my opinion, that's what needs to happen with all restaurants. Servers need to be paid minimum wage so they don't have to rely on tips to survive. Of course, if customers find their service good, then they are allowed to tip and that would be extra for the servers. That's the real meaning of 'tip' anyway.
  19. Those who work in the hospitality industry should have a look at the situation in Thailand and be grateful for what they have. In Thailand, workers in the hospitality industry are paid only on days they work. There's no such thing as a five-day week. When they need to take leave, they forfeit their pay for the day.
  20. reverserewind

    reverserewind Member

    I agree. Almost anywhere in the world it's all like that. Customers are customers, they must not be responsible for paying the restaurant staff a salary.
  21. Miya

    Miya Active Member

    Glad to see that someone agrees with me. And the more I think about it, the more it doesn't make sense to me. There are lots of other low-paying jobs, but those other jobs don't get tips. Take teachers for example. They don't make a lot of money and when they stay after school to help a student, they don't get "tips". If they want better pay, they petition and negotiate with the BOE. I think the same needs to be done with servers -- what we need to do is turn to the restaurants, not to the customers.
  22. amelia88

    amelia88 Active Member

    Every school age kid I know has their parents buying their teachers gift cards and other rewards for being a teacher. Teachers actually get a lot from the parents, because parents know that teachers don't get paid a lot and parents seem to supplement that. One of my friends from high school is actually a 4th grade teacher now, and she said at the end of the school year she raked in over $1000 in various gift cards (ranging from things like Starbucks to Target and even local grocery stores) as thank yous from the parents. Yes I definitely get that it's not "right" that we have to supplement servers incomes with tips, but in saying that I would say eating out in the US is a heck of a lot cheaper than a lot of other countries (for the amount of food you get, especially) so really until the law changes that servers are getting a liveable wage then I feel like my point still stands, tip or don't eat at an establishment that requires it.
  23. Miya

    Miya Active Member

    Must be different policies then because when I was in school, my teachers were not allowed to take any gifts (with monetary value) from students as it would be considered "bribe". Even so, in your example, parents are voluntarily giving gifts ("tips") to those teachers. They are not required to and their child will not receive a lower level of education if they choose not to contribute. That's very different from this required tip customers are asked to pay at restaurants. I did mention above that if I feel the service is good, I don't mind tipping.

    And to reply to your "until the law changes that servers are getting a liveable wage then I feel like my point still stands, tip or don't eat at an establishment that requires it", what I was saying is everyone is focused on requiring customers to tip, but they aren't fighting for actual good pay for the servers. So instead of putting the blame on restaurants for underpaying their servers, the blame is put on the customers if they don't tip. They get people rolling their eyes at them or calling them "cheap" for leaving a small tip or no tip at the table. Wow, I'm paying to eat out and have a good time with my family yet I still have be ridicule and judged by people?

    Either way, I would still disagree with your statement. It sucks that servers are so underpaid, but that isn't my responsibility. Tips should ony be given to servers who actually provide good service and that decision should be up to me, not to the restaurant.
    Ava likes this.
  24. Ava

    Ava Member

    I do find that there are many Americans that have the view if you can't afford to tip then don't eat out or only go to fast food places. It defies logic and creates a rich and poor divide. The whole tipping system goes back to days of slaves and servants, and that's why the minimum wage is a better idea for an equal society.

    If employers can't afford to pay staff, then why open in the first place I say? Most can, but they choose not to and have higher profits instead. That's a simple fact, and it's because the law allows them to get away with it.

    My friend was a teacher and got some gift cards, usually at Christmas, but I think that's more of a gesture. The American dream is very broken from I can see, and the fact is most visitors won't tip highly because they are not used to it, and 25 percent extra on a bill is like inviting the server to be a guest at your own table.
  25. Miya

    Miya Active Member

    Very good point and you are most certainly right. A lot of restaurant owners are making bank off their establishment. They can certainly afford to pay minimum wage to their servers. But they don't, and instead they expect their customers to do that for them.

    Minimum wage is what servers should be pushing for, not required tipping.
  26. Ava

    Ava Member

    One of the issues I see here is the conflict between supporting local and eating at a cheap diner (which still requires tipping) or a fast food place. If people want locals and visitors to support local places, they can do by being there to eat, because if they don't then the place will close down. By expecting people to pay 20-25 percent extra on top of the local prices (which can be a little higher), aren't Americans just shooting themselves in the foot?

    An example would be when I was visiting a coastal town, I wanted to try the local restaurant which was more expensive than say a cafe. If I tipped 25 percent on say $30, that's the cost of a bottle of wine in the supermarket. As a result I wouldn't go, which means the restaurant loses a potential customer. No wonder so many small places go out of business. Basically, if people don't feel pressured and obliged to tip excessively, then they would eat out more. It's a catch 22 situation.

    I always wondered why they gave me a bill when I had a complimentary buffet breakfast in hotels, did they seriously expect me to tip on what I was getting as an incentive and included in the room rate? In hindsight I guess they were, but in other countries you eat your breakfast and just get up an leave once you are ticked off the list.
  27. reverserewind

    reverserewind Member

    Yeah, but at the end of the day, it's pretty hard If even impossible to change the whole culture that has been around for almost a century. So, I don't see any "riots" taking place in a foreseeable future.
  28. Like I
    Like I said, if you're having bad service, you need to complain to the manager because the fifteen percent is just part of the expense if you're in a big group. My sister worked as a waitress for most of her high school and college years and it's much harder having a huge group than it is with a bunch of small ones. Servers can expect you to drop a hundred on top of your bill because they feel like they deserve it, doesn't mean that you need to. You shouldn't pay more than the mandatory tip unless YOU feel like the service and food was just that great. If you were in France, with their mandatory tips, you wouldn't pay extra on top, you don't here either. Next time, ask if you can pay the mandatory tip in cash and leave that, that way the servers get the tip without having wait for the manager to split it with the waitresses and helpers.

    You are always paying for for and service otherwise, why are you eating out when it's so much cheaper to eat at home or a fast food joint. America is just a little more open about the judging system with tips. While you're being all sympathetic about how waitresses don't make minimum wage. My sister used to pull in a couple hundred dollars in tips, for awesome service at a restaurant that didn't do mandatory tips, on the weekends. At a good restaurant, waitresses and waiters can rake in more money in tips then they would have been being paid minimum wage. Personally, it annoys me when places like Starbucks pays their employees the minimum and they still want tip on top of that. That to me, is so much worse. I never tip there. But mandatory tipping is only for big groups, more than six. If you don't like it, travel in smaller groups when you come to America then the tipping is voluntary even if you get the side eye.
  29. Miya

    Miya Active Member

    So what if I complain? I don't have to pay the 15% that was forced on me? The fact that I was forced to pay it in the first place is wrong, in my opinion.

    My sister works part-time in a Japanese restaurant in America. She gets minimum wage and she gets tips. Yeah, serving bigger parties is hard... and?? If you do a good job, people will naturally tip you what they feel like is fair. The restaurant should have no right to make that decision for the customers.
    Oh, so because it's so much cheaper to eat at home, I shouldn't eat out? LOL. I am eating out for the food, not for the service. People won't go to restaurants with excellent service if the food is terrible because they are looking to purchase food, not service. Like someone mentioned above, saying that someone who can't afford to (or don't want to) tip shouldn't eat out is drawing a clear line between rich and poor people. It's like saying that poor people can't eat out.

    I can afford to tip, and will do so when I feel that it's worth it, but it's disgusting that restaurants are using their customers to pay for their staff.
    So now this is a different topic, the fact that servers can make more and so they don't fight for minimum wage and just rely on tips. So how is this being fair to the customers?

    Other countries such as Japan, Australia, Switzerland, etc. get by fine without the tipping system so why can't America? Let's be real here -- if restaurants would pay servers fairly, the tipping system can be abolished and servers can still live comfortably with their wage.
    Ava likes this.
  30. Interesting to read about how tipping has become a point of contention in the US. So which comes first? The low pay or the tips? Is it the low pay which makes tips the only way to survive or is it the tips which make the low pay acceptable?

    In Malaysia, tipping is not practiced. I don't ever remember having to tip when I eat out anywhere in Malaysia. In Thailand, it's not mandatory. Nobody will look oddly at you if you don't tip. Some restaurants have a service charge added to the bill. Most don't. It's absolutely between the serving staff and the customer. Seriously speaking, when you eat out and you have been served well, it's natural to want to show your appreciation with a tip. Let's not make it a point of contention.
  31. As for complaining, if you have a valid reason why the service or food isn't good, you can get out of paying a tip. If you feel that the service and food were great, why wouldn't you pay the tip? The mandatory tip for huge parties gets spit up by the multiple servers that carried out your food and drinks, the cooks focusing on your table so that everything comes out about the same time, and the helpers behind filling your drinks while your server works extra tables. So the fifteen percent is usually split by at least three different people with rounds it out to five percent. You're overestimating the generosity of other people based on what you would do. Most people, even with great service, won't want to spend the extra amount after covering a bill for eight or more people. There are plenty of stingy people out there, I know because my sister used to complain about the people who never tip. The mandatory tip is just expected in America that every time you enter a restaurant with more than six people, you know that you're going to pay extra in the tip. No restaurant is forcing anyone to eat at their restaurant in huge groups.

    If you are eating out for food, you can eat at fast food restaurants, you can buy remade meals at a grocery store or gas station, or you can order takeout for a huge group and not leave a tip at all. People go to restaurants, especial nice ones, not only for the good food but the service. If you have two restaurants that serve basically the same food, at the same price, and the same nice decor you would still pick the restaurant with the nicer servers because eating in a restaurant is an experience. Even if you eat at a fast food place, don't you avoid the one with the rude employees who never get your order right? Of course you do, because customer service is a huge part of business. If you can't afford to tip along with your meal, you probably couldn't afford to eat at the restaurant if they actually paid their waiters and waitresses a full wage. That's not the restaurant's fault. Poor or stingy people probably shouldn't eat out since eating at a restaurant is a luxury. Besides, if you have a twenty dollar meal, that's a two to three dollar tip. If you can't afford that you shouldn't eat out at a nice restaurant.

    What is the difference between waiters and waitresses getting tips while the food is cheap or eating at a restaurant with expensive food but pays their waiters and waitresses minimum wage? Either way, the customer is paying for it because it's a business. The tip just insures that you waiter or waitress has an incentive to be a good server. Australia has a service fee, which is mandatory tipping. Swiss federal law dictates that all service charges be included in published prices, so you are probably paying the tip under the guise of a service fee. You are going to end up paying either by tipping, service fee, or higher price on the meal, what's the difference if America uses a tip?
  32. America didn't originally do tipping. It became a thing because of Prohibition and the ban of alcohol. The loss of profits caused the wage to fall which forced business owners to encourage waiters to take tips to make up the difference. A century later and we still have tipping. So to answer your question is that businesses couldn't afford to their waiters because of Prohibition which forced them to take tips until tips just became acceptable over time. There are some restaurants that are starting to pay their waiters minimum wage but I've heard complaints from waiters that they make less without the tips on the nights they are really busy.

    I think one of the main problem is that serving food was never supposed to be a long term job. It's not like France where it's a career choice that people would actually consider. Serving food is supposed to be a temporary job while you are in high school, college, or while you're working on something bigger. I think that's why it doesn't really bother a lot of people that the wage is so low. It's kind of like the jobs as McDonalds, those jobs were never suppose to support a family with kids. They were made for high schoolers and college kids trying to get something on their resume while they didn't have huge expenses. Most jobs in the restaurant industry is never meant to be a permanent career unless you plan on owning a restaurant or become a famous chef.
  33. Thank you @DreamingOfCherryBlossoms , now I have a better understanding of the situation. It's quite similar to the situation in Thailand and Malaysia then. Being a waiter or a waitress has never been considered a career option. That's not to say that people do not stay in those jobs for years. I have met people who have been working in that capacity for more than ten years. Very often, for the girls, it's a way to get to meet people and move on to better things, which, for many of them, is to get married.
  34. Miya

    Miya Active Member

    The point I'm making is, the tip is forced on me. I don't have a choice. Why does the restaurant get to make the decision for me? And complaining would just make a big deal out of it. The restaurants will not change their policies.

    Okay, maybe I am overestimating the generosity of other people and there are stingy people. But what about those who are super generous? Those who come in and tip more than 15%? Do the servers hand the extra percentage back? They don't. They keep it in their own pockets. So while there are stingy people, there are also generous people. You can also look at it from the other side.

    "Most people, even with great service, won't want to spend the extra amount after covering a bill for eight or more people" is exactly why restaurants should pay their servers fairly. So that even when we have those stingy people, the servers don't have to feel like they were working for nothing.

    Sorry, but this is bs. To say poor people shouldn't eat out because they are poor is bs. A family can save up for weeks for a dinner at a nice restaurant and you're saying that just because they can't afford a tip, then they shouldn't go? Ridiculous. Might as well have a sign outside the restaurant saying "no poor people allowed".

    And I think you misunderstood my previous comment about eating out for service. I am saying that the customer is not buying service, they are buying food. If there are two identical restaurants, then of course we will go to the one with better service. But what if we are talking about two different restaurants? Restaurant A has great service and terrible food. Restaurant B has great food and terrible service. I don't think people will go to Restaurant A just for the good service because in the end, they are eating out for food.

    It's a big difference. From the customers perspective, at least the decision of tipping or not is up to them. Maybe the restaurants will raise their prices to $100 for a plate of pasta. But if I step inside that restaurant, that is my decision to purchase that plate of pasta. No one is forcing me to go in and eat their food. Yes, maybe it's more expensive than when their pasta was $20 and I had to pay a 15% tip. But I know that if I walk in with only $100, I can still afford my meal and not be asked to pay any forced charges.

    From the servers' perspective, it's better too. It'll guarantee them a stable income even when there are no tips.

    Again, you can look at it from the other side. Servers who know they will get a mandatory tip might not work as hard.

    So, let me ask you this. You go into a supermarket to look for carrots and ask one of the employees to help you find them. They take you to the produce section and hand you a carrot. Do you give them a tip? How about when you go to the convenience store to buy juice, do you leave a tip for the stock boy? It's the same idea; they are providing a service to you.
  35. Ava

    Ava Member

    I knew this would be a heated debate and wrote about it on my blog, but I see it more about cultural expectations as in what Americans believe, and the rest of world. A service industry job should be paid a normal wage, and it's wrong that someone working in say Burger King gets more per hour than a server in a 5 star hotel down the road, because the guests are supposed to be richer and can afford to pay higher tips to the server.

    In the US, by law they can state a service charge, but not a gratuity. However, one assumes a service charge means a gratuity, but these days it doesn't and that's the problem. It's one of those unspoken and unofficial traditions that has lasted in the US longer than any other country, and it's the one I loathe.

    I spend some time with a well off Jewish friend of mine who is American and she is a tight tipper by American standards. I was with her when she went to have her hair cut by a well known hairdresser who she knows very well, and when she went to pay he asked if she wanted to add a tip, and she only added 15 percent, which I thought was quite low for a celebrity hairdresser who had squeezed her in. So not all Americans do tip well, but some do.

    The issue I have is more the social pressure to do it, regardless of how much money you have. No one should feel obliged to tip, and in all the countries I have been to and eaten in and lived in, only the US has this archaic mentality. I tell you, each time I pay for a meal there I cannot wait to get out, with all the stress of whether I had paid enough as a tip.
  36. Yes, there are generous people, very generous people who tip on top of the fifteen percent. That's there business what they do with their money. The majority of people aren't that generous because they live on a budget and even the best people don't realize how much that cocktail or desert adds up. You do have a choice, go to a restaurant that doesn't require tips like fast food or eat in smaller groups. The mandatory tip is only for big groups. If it bothers you so much, change which restaurant you're going to, eat more fast food and save for the restaurants you really want to go to. No one is forcing you to eat at these restaurants.

    Why is it bs that people don't go buy what they can't afford? With that logic poor people should go buy Gucci bags because they want it, who cares if the bag is out of their price range. If you save up and you can't afford to tip, you probably can't afford to find out at the end of the meal that those refills weren't free or that it's lunch so the prices aren't half off. It happens. So you spend an extra week saving up to go to a restaurant or you change plans, order pizza with coupons and watch a movie at home. You improvise. It's crazy to me that you are advocating a family on a tight budget to go out and not tip when waiters and waitresses don't make minimum wage. The point is that it's understood that you're expected to tip, especially if you're in a big group or if you have kids. It's not that poor people aren't allowed it's that they should use common sense and not buy things outside of their price range. If you can't afford to tip, you can get groceries and have a picnic at the park or beach, have pizza in, get fast-food and let the kids play in the playground while you catch up with your spouse. When you're broke, some restaurants are simply off limits.

    You example kind of sucks, I would much rather go to a restaurant for a $20 plate and leave a $3 than go somewhere with a $100 plates just so I can get out of tipping. Plus, I always find those kind of restaurants have really empty plates and rude servers. As for your last questions, if the employee went around the store and picked up my food and had it ready for me to pay when I got there, I would tip them, that's part of the service. If they delivered my groceries, I would tip them. Why would I tip them for showing me where something is? I don't tip strangers when I ask for directions. Plus, I've been to a store where I asked where they sold the baguettes, and they took me to the freezer section. I would have laughed if it hadn't been so tragic that they didn't know what a baguette was. I don't leave a tip for a stock boy in a convenience store any more than I leave a tip for the guy that stocks to fridge at the restaurant because I usually never come in contact with them. They are paid to stock the shelves/refrigerator not provide me with a direct service. With that logic, we would tip secretaries for stocking their bosses office.

    Tipping is for the service industry which requires on some level to have some contact with a customer. Servers come to the table, get silverware, food, drink, refills, and fixes problems. Pizza delivery brings the food to us, tips help with gas hopefully. I've never tipped a hairdresser, didn't even know you should until recently, but they directly deal with your hair and fix it if it's not right. The exception might be for mechanics, mostly because they are charging you an arm and a leg plus a service fee on top of it. Taxi drivers provide a convenient way of travel and the really nice ones help you with your luggage. See, direct contact. We don't tip the cooks, the managers, and the cashiers because they're not the one dealing with us. If you hate the concept of tipping so much, you have options. You can always order the food to go and eat somewhere else at most restaurants. You can eat as less fancy restaurants, that might not require you to tip, or you can order take out to your hotel. There are ways around it, if the idea offends you so.
  37. Miya

    Miya Active Member

    So it's theirs (generous people's) business what they do with their money, but poor people can't make that choice for themselves? If restaurants charged 15% and everytime they get anything over, they hand it back, then okay. They are charging 15% and they are taking 15% only. But why is it okay for them to take anything over but not accept anything under?

    No one is forcing me to eat at the the restaurants, but they are forcing the tip on me. It's a custom in America and almost everywhere you'll find that its necessary to tip 15% (like you said, in a party of 5+). So yes, that tip is forced on me and I can't get out of it without making a big deal.

    It's bs because you are drawing a clear line between rich and poor people by saying that there are things poor people can't or shouldn't do. Which is why I say that unless there is a sign saying "no poor people allowed", we shouldn't say that poor people shouldn't eat out. This is pretty much borderline discrimination. Poor people should have just as much right to eat out as me and you.

    I never said for them to not tip. I said the decision should be up to them. Maybe they feel like the service was only worth 5% tip because it was mediocre service. And in a country where tipping isn't a custom, that would be okay. But not in America because they are going to have to fork out 15% anyway.

    The point of that example wasn't about the price, but on the fact that I am the decision maker.

    Someone showing you where something is at a store is a direct service. Someone bringing you an item you need is basically the same as the server bringing you a plate of food.

    Let me be clear -- I never said I was against tipping. I'm against the tipping custom in America where we have to tip because the restaurants are refusing to pay their servers fairly. I have lived in two countries that don't require tipping and don't take tips (they are even offended sometimes if you tip them). The servers are paid minimum wage and I still get good service. So why is it working in other countries and not in America? America is too focused on relying on tips to pay their servers. That's not how it should be. Instead of raising the mandatory tip percentage, servers need to fight for getting a minimum wage. Just think about it for a second -- are restaurants really unable to pay minimum wage to their servers or are they just selfish and greedy?

    Tipping is fine if the customer chooses to do it. That's the real meaning of tips anyway -- when the customer feels like giving a bonus to their server because of great service. Mandatory tipping isn't a tip any more. It's an extra charge.
  38. Ava

    Ava Member

    I just watched an episode of 'Undercover Boss' featuring 'Hamburger Mary's' and one of the servers was shown to try to increase the bill by upselling and trying not to give customers tap water. The boss was shocked because she said she needed to up the bill amount otherwise the tips would be too low and cost her.

    In the end the bosses kept her on, but said she needed to be retrained as the customer always comes first. Even though it wasn't nice ot see the server go on about money, the fact is many probably feel the same way and if people order a lunch special and drink water, the bill won't be high. One must also think of people such as seniors dining out who are on a pension. They need to save money, and if restaurants offer early bird specials and senior menus then they are aware people have to budget when they eat out. Therefore the mentality that only well off people should go out and eat is what is wrong in American society because they can't afford to budget for a tip too.
  39. reverserewind

    reverserewind Member

    As far as I know, tap water is usually free all the time.
  40. Ava

    Ava Member

    My point was tap water is free, but because the server was under pressure to make more money she tried not to give them tap water and to sell them bottled water instead to increase her bill total. In the US people pay tips on the bill total, so if everyone has bottled water that can add on another $20 on the bill and thus lead to a bigger tip.

    That's why servers do get pushy about the order value, as they only look at the total. Some people only tip on the food, but if you only order a platter and mainly drinks, it wouldn't be fair to tip on one platter if they served drinks all night.
  41. If you are in a big group, mandatory tipping is part of the social contract in America. If you don't like it, you can buy food elsewhere or order out. You have options and aren't helpless to avoid the mediatory tipping if it bothers you. As for not taking any amount under 15%, it's just a custom because at that point that's part of the bill. It's like not paying for you appetizer or a couple drinks. It's the same service fee you find in most of Europe, except it's only for big parties of six or more. If it doesn't bother you in Europe is shouldn't bother you here.

    Business owners don't put 'no poor people allowed' because they don't inherently think poor people are stupid. They expect everyone to know their personal budget and pick appropriate restaurants within their budget. It's not discrimination, It's common sense. You don't buy things you can't afford just because you want them. If i could afford to, I would eat out for every meal just to avoid dishes but I can't afford that so I don't go. Eating out at a fancy restaurant isn't a social right, it's a privilege kind of like owning a Porsche or Gucci.

    I already explained that if you are in a big group, you already know you're going to pay a mandatory tip before you enter the restaurant. If the service is mediocre, you have to talk to the manager or at least stop the next waitress to walk past you to get what you need. If you have to demand the service constantly, you need to talk to the manager. It's a bit aggressive but you're paying 15% for service. As for you being the decision maker, you walked into a nice restaurant with a big group, you chose to pay their mandatory fee. Don't like, walk out and go get McDonalds. Like you said, you are the decision maker.

    Someone showing me something isn't any more a service than asking directions. Their main job isn't to walk me around the store and shop for me, their job is to fill the shelves and keep the story looking nice. Helping me is just a side job, I know I worked retail most of my college years and I didn't do half the work my sister did to make her customers happy as a waitress. If someone brings you an item, like food or groceries to your door, you do pay them a fee or the store does when they charge you. At least they do here. So sometimes it's called a fee and sometimes it's a tip but they still get paid for that service, so I don't really know what you're arguing about.

    In those two other countries that you live in where they don't tip, is being a waiter or waitress an actual career choice? I know in France it is, kids actually consider doing as a career. But it's not like that in America, for better or worse, being a waitress or waiter isn't supposed to be a long term job. Yes, I know that people do raise families on that job but you're not actually supposed to. As for the restaurants, the really successful ones can afford to pay minimum wage but most are always courting bankruptcy. Out of all the business types, running a restaurant is the hardest and the most likely to fail.

    I think waiters and waitresses have to choose between whether they want to take a chance and get huge tips or work minimum wage. No one is going to tip people who make minimum wage. I certainly don't give tips to the people at Starbucks and McDonalds because they make minimum wage. How frustrating would it be for your dining experience to pay extra for the meal because they were making minimum wage and then to be hit with paying a tip on top of that. That to me would be more greedy. I do agree that mandatory tipping is an extra charge that ensures the waitresses that serve you get their fair share.
  42. Miya

    Miya Active Member

    Erm, yes, it's discrimination when you say a poor person can't or shouldn't do something that a rich person can/should do. Who are you to say that poor people can or can't do something? Poor people can make choices for themselves and we have no right to say what they can or can't do. Eating out is not a social right, but what you're saying is still pretty much discrimination against poor people. Poor people can afford eating out once in a while if they save up and when they do that, they should have every right to have a nice meal. Saying they don't deserve to eat out because they can't pay a tip that's being forced on them? Yeah, that sounds like discrimination to me.
    No, it's not. I already said that I walk into a restaurant looking for food, not service. The service is something that comes along with the food and they are forcing me to pay a sum for it. If it was my decision, I should be the one deciding if or how much I want to pay for the service provided to me. Forcing me to pay that tip is like paying for the movies and then being charged to sit at the seat.

    And you do know that tipping is still expected even if you don't have a large party, right? It's not 15% but they expect you to leave something regardless of how the service is. You can leave nothing, but they will judge you. I'm eating out to have a great time with my friends and family yet I have to be judged based on how much tip I leave?
    Someone showing you something at a store is different from someone on the streets helping you with directions. A person on the streets helping you with directions can say no if they don't want to help you. But an employee at the store usually won't/can't say no because they are getting paid to service you. Them bringing you to the item you're looking for isn't much different than a server bringing you a plate of food. The employees at stores don't ask for tips because they get paid minimum wage and it's part of their job. Servers ask for tips because even though it's their job to serve people, they don't get minimum wage and have to rely on tips to survive.
    It's both. Some people see servers as a long term job, some see it as a part-time. I can't see myself being a waitress, but I don't see any shame in being one. I don't see why we can't make it an actual long term career.

    As for restaurants, most restaurants make more than you think and can afford to pay their servers at least minimum wage. The only reason they don't is because they're not required to. And if their business isn't good enough to pay their servers minimum wage, then their restaurant probably doesn't need so many servers (because there's not enough business).
    Believe it or not, people do tip those who make minimum wage. Like I said, my sister works at a Japanese-American restaurant in her college town. She is paid minimum wage and gets over $100 in tips everyday (more on weekends and holidays). Most people do not mind leaving a little bit for their servers if they get good service. There's no need to force them to leave a mandatory (bigger) tip. If we gave servers minimum wage and the tips decreased, it would still be better. It's still a more stable source of income than relying on tips alone.

    People don't tip at Starbucks and McDonalds not because those employees make minimum wage. They don't tip because there is no service. They don't even bring you your food. They put it down on a tray and you grab it yourself.
  43. First, there is a huge difference between can't and shouldn't. Poor out to eat in a resturant if they afford to cover the tip, it's rude. No one is physically stopping them, there are no signs. Though, I will like to note that there at are private resturants that only allow members to eat at or require their customers to wear certain types of clothing, failure to do either will get you kicked out of the resturant. But according you your logic, that's discrimination. If poor people want to save up and go to a fancy resturant, that's there business.

    It doesn't matter if you don't go out to eat for the service, it's part of the experience of eating in the resturant. If you are in a small group, under six, you can tip as much or as little as you want. People are pushing the 15% on everyone because of social justice warriors but you're not actually required to pay all the way up to 15% if the services isn't what you think it should be. People are going to judge you for everything, how you look, who you're with, and yes how much you tip. If that doesn't bother you, what people think of your tip shouldn't bother you either.

    I've been to plenty of stores, espeically Walmarts, that the floor people just pointed or frankly told me they didn't know. So yeah, it's exactly like getting directions on the street because sometimes the employee sends you to the completely wrong isle just to get rid of you. Some people are forced to consider being a server because they either lack the degree, work experience, or a more stable job. But the requirements are really low, it's essetially a job a high schooler can do, and if you live in the country a middle schooler can do. It's paid poorly because anyone can become a waiter and waitress.

    Actually, I've been to McDonalds where they brought out the tray of food to the table if you're old or you have kids. It's really sweet actually. It's not all of them but I was never expected to tip because they make minimum wage. Starbucks arguably makes you special coffee drink really fast, but I agree. What job does your sister do that allows her to make minimum wage and tips? Hair dresser? Uber?
  44. Miya

    Miya Active Member

    The private restaurants that only allow members to eat with a dress code isn't discriminating against poor people. If poor people can follow the dress code and can pay for their meal, they will be allowed to eat there. I'm saying your comment of what poor people should or shouldn't do is discriminatory. You are drawing a very clear line between poor and rich people. But that's going off topic so there's no use commenting on this topic any more. You can have your own opinion.
    I still remember how my aunt left 15% of a tip at a restaurant for a large party and the manager chased after us even after we left the restaurant to get more because their mandatory tipping was above 15%. So even if it's not a law, yes, they do "require" you to pay the amount they charge.
    Ah, but you see, telling you they don't know isn't saying no. People on the streets can tell you straight up no or even ignore you like they don't see you, but employees can't because you're a customer. Maybe you haven't had the best service, but where I'm from in America, the store employees will either tell you the aisle the item's in or they take you there. If they don't know where it is (they usually do), they'll either call someone or walk around and find it for you. That's why to me, it's a service. They are bringing you to the item you want, same as how a server brings out your food. And the store employees don't ask for mandatory tips because they are actually paid minimum wage (at least).

    A job that anyone can do doesn't mean it has to be a poorly paid job. Movie ticket ushers and cashiers are also popular jobs for high-schoolers and they pay minimum wage. Low requirements is not an excuse to underpay your servers. And frankly speaking, minimum wage isn't really that high. They are always fighting for a higher minimum wage because it's not enough. So why are restaurants an exception where they don't have to follow the law? Restaurants can afford to pay their servers more than $2 or $3 an hour. But they don't because the tipping custom is too strong in America and they take advantage of that. You're siding more with the owners here and I'm siding more with the customers. I don't think customers are responsible for the wage of the employees.
    Yes, there can be that service if you are a special case (and that's entirely up to the employee, it's not required), but most McDonalds and fast food chains don't do it.

    In Japan actually, the workers will bring you the food if you go through the drive-thru. They only have one window for taking orders and then you drive your car up where the employee will come outside and hand you your food. Also if your food isn't done cooking when you order, they'll ask you to take a seat and bring you your food later.

    In Hong Kong, you can leave your trash at the table after you're done eating and someone will come clean your table and take your trash away.

    Both of these countries provide more service than America and they don't take tips.
    She's a part-time waitress at a restaurant. So yes, it is possible to pay minimum wage and collect a good amount of tips.
  45. Ava

    Ava Member

    Comparing a like for like country with similar lifestyles, in the UK people get minimum wage in Pizza Hut in London and still get tips, but I doubt in say Chicago they get minimum wage and rely on tips. Both are big cities with tourists, locals, and business people but the way staff are paid and what people are expected to tip is very different.

    A service industry is just that, and a tip is for good service. If it's bad you are still supposed to tip in the US which is crazy. I once went to a beauty salon and I was asked how much I wanted to tip. I didn't really want to as the therapist was rude and not that good, but I felt obliged to. I never went back there and that was a mid-high end salon.

    I think it's the mentality that you are expected to tip regardless of how bad the service is. I recently went to Pizza Hut (in the UK) and the service was below par and I did email the head office later even though my brother left a 25% tip as we had no change. They sent us a gift card for half the meal price, because it was poor service and standards. We shouldn't have tipped, but we did out of guilt, but it wasn't the server only the whole restaurant was badly run. By law they get minimum wage plus tips.
    Last edited: Oct 9, 2016
    Miya likes this.
  46. First, it's not discrimination to say that if you can barely make your rent, you shouldn't go out to eat in a restaurant. I'm not making laws that will punish them or restricting them in any way. I'm just saying that if you can't afford something, whether it's dinner in a restaurant, or going to Disneyland, or buying some name brand purse you shouldn't buy it. That's just common sense. If poor people can dress right for a restaurant then why can't they pay tip?

    What restaurant did you go to that required you to pay more than 15%? What state were you in?

    People can ignore you at their jobs, I've been to plenty of Walmarts and other stores where the people are just there to stock shelves and not deal with people. SO yeah, they can refuse even if I"m a customer. But it's also in their job description to tell you where items are. If I was asking a waitress for directions to a bathroom, I wouldn't tip her for it. But I can see why you would see that as a service though you spend a couple minutes with them instead of thirty or an hour with a waiter or waitress.

    Actually, that's the whole point. If anyone can do it, it usually is low paying. More skill typically means more money because only a limited amount of people can do the work. Movie ticket ushers and cashiers aren't working with perishables. Restaurants are working with food that is getting old the minute you buy it. While movies and most of the stock in a store doesn't need to be replaced daily or bi-weekly. The overhead is simply different. Which minimum wage are you referring to? It's ten in California but it's still eight in Nebraska. How do you know if minimum wage sin't really that high? Do you run a restaurant or a business? Most of the people pushing for a higher minimum wage haven't owned either and had to pay taxes on employees. The more money you pay to your employee is more tax money along with benefits you have to cover. I'm siding with the owners because of all the businesses to run, restaurants are the hardest. As a customer, I'm used to tips and I expect it. If I don't want to pay it, I don't eat out. Customers are always responsible for the wages of employees. If we don't buy a product or service, the business can't afford to pay their employees and they go bankrupt. You're right, not all McDonalds perform the service but that's because you're buying cheap quick food. Serving people individually at their table cuts into how quickly you can serve your customers. So you make a trade for faster service by not being served at a table and going to the cashier to order, you also pay first and get food later. The business model for Mcdonalds and other fast-food restaurants is reversed from typical restaurants where you sit and eat, then pay.

    The drive thru in Japan sounds weird, I'll have to go try it. So is it like a Sonic? The Hong Kong one, do you mean at a nice restaurant or a fast-food joint? Asia has a different view on tips. But you know that Hong Kong's minimum wage is like HK $32.5 which is like $4.19 in USD right? That's not even half of California's minimum wage and not even a third of what they want it to be. Japan's minimum wage in just Tokyo Prefecture is like 932 JPY which is about $8.98 USD, so still under our minimum wage. So it's hard to compare those countries with America once you covert the currency.
  47. Ava

    Ava Member

    I read a recent article on what Brits enjoy when they leave the US and one person wrote something that made me smile, and many others agreed. He said he loved the fact when he was in a restaurant he could just order his food and then the server leaves him alone to eat his food without having to butter him up for a tip.

    He hit the nail on the head in that many people prefer that, and while there are people who are more needy, the majority of us are not. Often I just need to order, get my food, maybe get a top up drink, and then order a pudding and coffee, then pay. Theoretically it should be simple for a server; take the order, serve it, clear the plates, and then process the bill.
  48. Miya

    Miya Active Member

    And so your point is...? Food is perishable and so...? So your workers are dealing with perishables so that's a reason to underpay them?
    You don't need to own an establishment to know that minimum wage isn't high. What you're saying is true, more money to your employees = more tax money and benefits = less money for the owners. So in other words, they're greedy and don't want to fork out the money to pay their employees.
    Really? Of ALL businesses out in the world, running a restaurant is the absolute HARDEST? I don't think so.

    And you're only used to tips and expect it because of the American custom. It's a custom that needs to be changed. Restaurant owners need to pay their servers minimum wage like all other occupations are required to. They shouldn't be an exception. If restaurants can't afford to pay their servers minimum wage, then maybe they don't need so many servers because their business isn't good.

    The Hong Kong one, I mean both. Restaurants will do it (of course), but fast-food will too. At McDonalds, you can just leave your trash at the table and someone will clean up after you. It's a service they provide.

    It's not hard to compare those countries with America. I don't see why it is. Those are countries who pay minimum wage (which is lower than U.S. minimum wage in some states), provide MORE service, and don't take tips. I don't see why America can't follow. It's a good example. Pay your servers more and stop relying on tips as a source of income.
  49. I have to say I'm not terribly surprised about it being California, especially if you're in certain cities like LA or San Francisco or if you're in Orange County. And yes, out of all the business types, running a restaurant is the hardest. Most restaurants are open most of the day and pretty much the whole week. Even when it's not open, you're either spending a couple hours making sure everything is cleaned so you don't get dinged by the health inspectors. If they're not they have to come in a couple hours before just to prep. Business owners practically live in their restaurants. That fact that you're so dismissive of that means you don't know enough about how a restaurant is run. The food gets old faster than you think and you still have to cover the cost even if it doesn't sell. As for having to few waiters on the floor, that's a nightmare for any waitress and you won't get better service for it. Instead of two or four servers in a decent sized restaurant you'll probably have one trying to work the whole restaurant. Why is it greedy for business people to make money off their investment? Servers, cooks, and the hostess haven't invested a cent into the restaurant. If the restaurant fails, the restaurant owner will probably have to file bankruptcy and have his/she credit ruined for quite a few years. He/she might even lose their house trying to make up the expense of a couple bad months before they closed. What about the employees, what happens to them, they lose a job. Nothing is as risk for them, they can just go to another restaurant and work their without any risk to their credit or their life. So what right do you have to call a business owner greedy. You've also haven't told me who's minimum wage we're referring to. Both Hong Kong and Japan have much cheaper minimum wages at four and eight bucks. California has a ten dollar minimum wage and they want it to be fifteen. That's fine for the big companies but what about the small mom and pop restaurants? They won't be able to afford to stay in business.

    So what if I'm used to tip. France is used to a mandatory service fee regardless if they eat by themselves or in a big crowd. And that's regardless if their server is completely rude or the food is awful. Besides raising the minimum wage doesn't work.
    Here's an article : http://www.cnsnews.com/commentary/j...imum-wage-will-hurt-workers-its-supposed-help

    Basically says that the hike in wage cause workers' weekly earnings to drop by an average of $150 a month. That's because while some workers got a higher wage others lost theirs. Not only that, the higher wage will shrink the work pool by increasing the unemployed while simultaneously reducing jobs because businesses can't afford to hire people. Not only that but businesses will hurt because they'll have to hike up the price of their products will cause more people to stay at home instead of buy further pushing them to fire more people.
  50. I find it interesting that a British man sees it as buttering it up when I see it as just service. I kind of expect my waiter to ask at some point if I want a refill, question if the meal is okay, if I need something I forgot to order, or if I want dessert. Since I'm not at home or in a fast food joint, I can't exactly go get a refill or condiments myself. If they just leave me alone and only drop of the bill, I don't tend to tip or if I do, very little. But I can understand wanting to be left alone.
  51. Corzhens

    Corzhens Active Member

    What I know about tipping in the US is from what I heard since I haven't been there yet. But in other countries particularly in Hongkong and Singapore, we have no problem with tipping since we are used to giving tips to food servers. But with the fastfood, I find that people in other countries throw away their trash unlike here in our country where the fastfood attendant would be the one to clean it for you. And when they do clean your trash, do they deserve a tip? Well, sometimes they get a tip for doing that.
  52. Ava

    Ava Member

    To be honest many people do see servers as buttering up customers to get good tips, and as hostess I know girls would do this to get good tips too. At the end of the night we would all discuss who got tips and who didn't and if you heard the banter you would get that the smiles and laughing with them was an act to butter up the guests.

    I have had had the odd tip but never expected it as I did my job. Other people expected them, and would go that little further with banter to flatter, that's what I mean by buttering up. A more down to earth server would get a tip because they just did there job and weren't being too 'in your face' as we say.
  53. Miya

    Miya Active Member

    I think I can say that they are greedy if they can afford to pay their servers minimum wage and they don't because they keep that money for themselves. Running a restaurant might be hard, but that's life. It's not the only hard business out there you know. What about bakeries or butchershops? They deal with perishables, they spend time at their establishments preparing and keeping things clean, etc. I don't see them underpaying their staff and having the customers pay tips to fund the salaries. If you decide to open a restaurant, then you have to take in the good points and the bad points. I don't see you pointing out that some restaurants are making more money than they are dishing out. You can't just want the benefits to having a restaurant and not the troubles that come with it. Restaurants shouldn't be an exception to minimum wage. There's no excuse.

    And you misunderstood what I'm saying about decreasing the servers. If an owner cannot afford to pay their servers minimum wage, then their business probably isn't ideal. And if their business isn't ideal, then they probably don't need so many servers. One server can work the whole restaurant if you're only going to get 1-2 customers a night.

    It's not greedy for them to make money off your own investment. But to not pay your workers fairly with that profit is greedy. Your logic is funny to me. Servers don't invest anything into the restaurant so restaurants have a reason to not pay them fairly? Okay, so following your logic, doctors and nurses invest nothing into public hospitals so we can pay them $2 an hour and if the hospital closes, they'll just go work at a private hospital. They have nothing to lose right? Just a job.

    I'm referring to minimum wage in the U.S. which is around $10 (give or take). That's not really that high especially when you consider that everything is going up in price (restaurant food included). Local mom and pop shops will definitely be at a disadvantage, but it's still doable. Like I said, you just hire servers appropriate to your business. If your business is thriving, then you're making more money, and you can afford more servers. If not, then even if you hire 100 servers, they won't have enough work to do.

    So in the end, restaurants are not willing to decrease the amount that goes in their pockets to give their servers a livable wage.
    We already mentioned this earlier. I told you to look at it from the other side. Most servers are living in poverty now because even with tips they are making less than minimum wage. They depend on welfare and that's also coming out of the taxpayer's money. Tips are unstable, some days you'll do well and some days you'll get nothing. A minimum wage is much better for them in general as it can at least guarantee a decent pay for each hour they work at the restaurant.

    Do you know the meaning of "tip"? According to the dictionary, it's "a sum of money given to someone as a reward for a service." Do you go around requiring people to give you rewards? No right? People give rewards when they feel like you deserve it. If it's a requirement and servers know for a fact that they will be rewarded, then why would they do their best? They're going to get their tip anyway. Tips should be something extra, not something required.
  54. First, doctors and nurses pay a huge sum of money into going to college for a specialized degree. Not everyone can just wake up one day and say I want to apply to be a doctor. You have to go to college and debt for years. Servers don't go to school to wait tables. I don't know where you live, but there are hardly any bakeries where I live, unless they're inside a grocery store which absorbs most of the loss by the sell of other goods. You also aren't being served bread for an hour with drink. You make an order, buy it, and leave. In a sense they are more like fast food restaurants than sit in restaurants. Most of the stuff is made in the morning and then they leave it there to be bought the rest of the day so you only need a cashier. A restaurant has a cook, a dishwasher, a server, and perhaps even a hostess, it's more involved.

    No restaurant is always making money and busy. Some days it's busy and some days it's not and there is usually a minimum of workers you need on the floor just in case it gets busy. Regardless, if the wage gets raised, people are going to get fired even if the business is doing well because a restaurant can't afford to keep them.

    You're telling me to look at it from the other side of the table when you can't be bothered to see it from the business side of the table. I do see it. My sister worked as a waitress from high school, most of college, and a couple years after in-between jobs. My mom was the head chef at a restaurant for about a year. My mom made minimum wage plus free pizzas and wished she was getting tips. My sister never once complained about not making minimum wage, which was about seven bucks not even ten, because the tips are good on average. Also, the article I linked shows that the minimum wage hurts waiters the most in the long run. What waitresses do you know that are on welfare? My sister covered college as a waitress. Her friend used to go traveling all the time in Europe on tip money alone. On the weekends my sister's friend would rake in a couple thousand, though she worked at the restaurant with a bar. So if you're good at your job, the tips are enough, especially now that everyone suddenly feels pressured to pay fifteen percent even if you get bad service.

    Tips are unstable and so is having a job in this economy. Tips are a reward for good service, so what? I don't see you complaining about tipping your cabbie. I don't require people to go around giving me a reward but a nice thank you now and then isn't bad. I don't do nice things for free. If I help a friend move out of their apartment at the dead of night before her boyfriend comes home. I sort of expect her to do the same in the future if I really need her help. It's a social exchange, nothing is free.

    I agree that tips shouldn't be required unless your table is huge, like more than ten people. Then you have at least two other waiters helping you keep an eye on your table and getting things, which means splitting a tip. So I'm fine with that. I really don't think the mandatory 15% is necessary, if the service is good tip and if not don't.

    Oh, I was talking to my mom about your mandatory tip problem. She said that you should ask for separate tickets, then the mandatory tip shouldn't be triggered when they get your receipt. Then you can leave whatever tip you want.
  55. Ah, that makes sense. I personally like both server types but I can get why a down to earth server would be preferred. I think on date night a down to earth server is preferred. But fun banter does help with the atmosphere when eating food. I had one restaurant that I went to because all the servers would smile and have a good time while working even though the food wasn't the best. I guess I grew up with waiters who said nice things and asked how I was as normal and expected instead of buttering up. Is that how British servers are? Are they all down to earth and just ask you what you want and then silently bring you the receipt when you're done?
  56. Ava

    Ava Member

    Actually, most of them are in the UK as they know people prefer to be left alone and they get minimum wages already. I have seen and been on the side where we have had to smile to make the server go away as people have private conversations or are being interrupted. If you are, then the server is less likely to get a tip and the people will leave early. I have done that and gone somewhere where we can be left alone.

    I have also heard people say, ' We'll call you if we need you' in an attempt to keep the server away. Overbearing service is not service. I used to be a mystery shopper for restaurants and one of our questions was if the server checked back, and were they attentive only at the right time. If I'm out seeing an old friend, I don't want constant interaction, just my food and the bill, and that's how most people are in the UK.
  57. Miya

    Miya Active Member

    You were saying that servers invest nothing into the restaurant so they have nothing to lose. It's the same for doctors and nurses. They have nothing to lose. They go to school and get a degree, but they aren't investing in the hospital. They are investing in their own life. The hospital can close down and they'll just get a new job. And if it's so hard to maintain a hospital and there so many costs, then it's okay to keep that money and not pay your workers fairly right? Same as restaurants, according to your logic, no? That's pretty much what you are saying when you say that restaurants are going through so many hardships so they shouldn't pay their servers minimum wage. It's not that they are not able to pay them minimum wage, it's that they don't want to.

    I don't know where you live, but bakeries are fairly common (pretty much everywhere). And yes, I know workers at a bakery are not like servers. I was not comparing them. I was comparing a restaurant to a bakery because I disagree with you saying that restaurants are THE ABSOLUTE HARDEST business to maintain. You said:
    ... and that description pretty much fits bakeries and butchershops too. It's even worse for them because their products are already premade. At a restaurant, it's only a loss if you can't sell the food and it can't be stored properly. Most of the time, you can freeze the items for another day. For bakeries, they throw out bread everyday because they cannot be sold the next day. Everything that doesn't get sold is a loss for them already. And they don't just bake in the morning, they continuously produce items throughout the day. So yes, restaurants are hard to maintain, but it's not the hardest. And having a hard to maintain is no excuse to underpay your workers.

    Which is something you can say for all businesses out there in the world.
    So keep the minimum of workers and 1-2 more and get rid of the rest. If you're only going to get 5 tables worth of customers a night, you don't need an army of servers anyway.
    I am looking at it from the other side in the eyes of a server, not the business owner. I see why people support tipping, but I already said that it's not going to be as good as getting a guaranteed wage. And I can only see the servers getting good tips supporting low minimum-wage and guaranteed tipping. The ones who are unlucky with tips are pretty much screwed forever.

    How many waitresses do you know that make more than $1000 a week? Five? Ten? Probably a number you can count on your fingers. There are always going to be outliers -- like someone selling hotdogs on the street can end up making more than someone working for Google. But in general, they are getting low-pay. A minimum wage can at least guarantee that they'll bring in an income every day they leave their house to go to work. What happens if no customers come in for the night? You don't get get any tips at all. You spend an entire day at work, only to find that you can barely afford a meal at McDonalds. There's no way you can feed your family with the wage restaurants are giving you.

    My sister is a college student and she gets minimum wage and tips at the restaurant she's working at. It's not impossible. Some restaurants have also started implementing the "no tipping" policy and are paying their servers minimum wage. I don't know why anyone would support giving anyone below-minimum wage. No one should get free labor.

    Here is the article saying that servers are more likely to be in poverty and on welfare because they don't get minimum wage: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/10/17/abolish-tipping_n_5991796.html
    I don't complain about tipping my cabbie because that decision is up to me. I can choose to tip, to reward them, based on the service they provide. They are not forcing me to pay an extra charge just for getting in their car. I don't complain because I made the decision to reward them and it's worth it to me.

    Having someone thank you is nice, but that's up to them. You can't force it out of them. You don't do things for free, yet you're okay with paying servers under minimum wage? They are pretty much working for free.

    If you help a friend move out an apartment, there's no obligation for your friend to return the favor. She might, but that's entirely up to her. Maybe when you need help moving out of your apartment, she'll say no and she has every right to do so. But if you tell her beforehand that you'll only help her if she helps you next time, then you're guaranteed a helper when you move. Just like servers. They are working and they don't know if they will get a return at all. If they don't -- as in the customers don't tip, then there's nothing they can do. But if they get the basic minimum wage, they're guaranteed at least something. Even if they can make more off tipping (which not everyone can), a minimum wage (which might be lower) is still better for them because it's a livable wage.