TIPPING/SERVICE CHARGE – why a % and not fixed – should they be capped??

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This topic contains 41 replies, has 24 voices, and was last updated by  AlanOrton1 7 Nov 2019
at 09:35
.

Viewing 12 posts - 31 through 42 (of 42 total)

  • Inquisitive
    Participant

    Nevereconomy, the whole discussion is about paying the restaurant staff more and eliminate the tip culture.

    There are many poorly paid workers in USA, starting with hotel room maids, first food restaurants, Walmart/Home depot/Target workers, car wash folks or even the lawn mower folks; do anyone pay tips to them? Where to start and stop?

    So unless Bernie get elected and establish minimum wage in USA, it will good for all service establishments to pay reasonable wages to their workers and not expect tips will cover that.

    Australia is a good example, they have high minimum wage (I think A$17 per hour), they always serve with smile, take care of you and don’t expect tips except some vain and high end restaurants.
    If you give tips it is acknowledged gracefully with a smile. That shall be the standard worldwide in my opinion.


    MartynSinclair
    Participant

    It’s an interesting point but restaurants in the States don’t think too much about exchange rates when setting their prices, in the same way that those in London don’t either. Local customs for service charges are also local, so how a non-local views them is slightly academic.

    @esselle – not quite sure non local views are ‘slightly academic’. If US restaurants included a 25% tip into their already high prices I think a lot would price themselves out of the market, especially in areas reliant on the overseas market.

    A main for example at $50, should be marked at $62.50

    Far easier for both the customer and worker to display the real price, not to have to negotiate a price after the event. If the 25% tip is reasonable, then include it in the price!

    A bit like driving to a hotel and being forced to pay for parking which you were not previously told about, because there is nowhere else to park…

    My view is if tips are expected, then reflect it in the price for the goods… at least it is clear…

    1 user thanked author for this post.

    esselle
    Participant

    Martyn

    25% is not a standard rate. When I lived in NYC there were three “norms”; poor service, ok service and great service. Each attracted a different %.

    Using your logic, which would you include in the price? Say “ok” service was included in the price as a standard, but you got poor service. Would you ask for a discount?


    canucklad
    Participant

    There are many poorly paid workers in USA, starting with hotel room maids, first food restaurants, Walmart/Home depot/Target workers, car wash folks or even the lawn mower folks; do anyone pay tips to them? Where to start and stop?

    The whole tipping culture in the US is IMO a blight on their tourist industry.
    The amount of friends I know that have travelled to the States on a “holiday of a lifetime” trip and have come back with a proverbial sour taste in their mouth is significant
    Notably , it’s those families who have saved up for years to go and do the whole Florida thing , only to find out that their hard earned spending money runs out before their due to head home.
    And the common theme and gripe — Being emotionally blackmailed , and in some instances aggressively challenged into leaving a 20% tip , usually over and above the service charge.
    Would increasing the minimum wage in the US change this culture, I doubt it.
    More likely , cost at POS would be increased to reflect the higher wage costs and you’d still expect to pay the 20% excess. Only now it’d be 20% on a higher POS cost !!


    Montysaurus
    Participant

    I agree with most of the posters’ comments and share the same irritations. One was so outrageous it made me smile – in Chicago I spent $42 in a diner and handed over a $100 bill to pay for it and the waiter asked “do you want any change from that”! Damned right I did!


    Ahmad
    Participant

    Martyn

    25% is not a standard rate. When I lived in NYC there were three “norms”; poor service, ok service and great service. Each attracted a different %.

    Using your logic, which would you include in the price? Say “ok” service was included in the price as a standard, but you got poor service. Would you ask for a discount?

    Out of sheer curiosity what are these percentages? When in the US, which is very rare now, I tip an average of 25% irrespective of what the service is like. Until the ‘90s I used to leave 15-20% depending on the service and almost always received a thanks and the mandatory ‘have a nice day’.


    Sanran
    Participant

    I totally agree with SwissExPat “You have an immediate voice to make your feeling known…”

    But at the end in my opinion tipping, by definition, can’t be compulsory: that’s a reward.

    The problem, in my case, is that I’ve been raised with a strong tipping culture by my mom (not really my dad…), which made me feel a bit bad when I don’t tip. She tips too many people: waiters, porters, taxi drivers, hairdressers, postmen, altar boys, nurses,…


    esselle
    Participant

    When I lived in NYC, late 90’s/early 00’s, the convention was 10% for bad service, 15% for OK service, and 20% for good service.

    If you left 10% it was recognised as a snub, and would often lead to a “robust discussion”.

    1 user thanked author for this post.

    canucklad
    Participant

    the convention was 10% for bad service

    Sum’s it up perfectly, paying people extra to reward them for being crap at their job!!


    LuganoPirate
    Participant

    What about the insidious practice of adding a “service charge” and then leaving a space for a further “gratuity” on the credit card or room charge slip?

    That annoys me as well, especially when I’ve later realised I tipped on top of the tip!
    I now scan the bill very carefully


    MartynSinclair
    Participant

    Martyn

    25% is not a standard rate. When I lived in NYC there were three “norms”; poor service, ok service and great service. Each attracted a different %.

    Using your logic, which would you include in the price? Say “ok” service was included in the price as a standard, but you got poor service. Would you ask for a discount?

    I think it would make life a lot easier for restaurant customers and the waiters/waitresses if the restaurants increased their prices and confirm, our prices include a discretionary service charge of 15%, 20% or 25%. Then both sides would know the position.

    To have to enter ‘negotiations’ about the size of the tip is something I am not used to and honestly, I don’t care how good the service is, I don’t think I would ever leave a 25% tip.

    I have started to leave tips in cash and remove the item from my bill. Some restaurants don’t like this as they lose the house share….

    This article is interesting about the changing culture…

    https://www.thrillist.com/eat/nation/american-restaurants-don-t-allow-tipping-usa-restaurants-banned-tipping


    AlanOrton1
    Participant

    Martyn – I don’t think the US will, in our lifetime, change their tipping culture. It very much is what it is.

    Given the massive domestic US market, the fact it may not make much sense to visitors is something I doubt is factored in.

    I regularly see US colleagues leave 20% (on top of the actual bill & sales tax) as a given. If a different % is left, it is most likely north of this.

    In NYC taxis, if you pay by card, options for tips come up, with 20% being the lowest(!)

    In some tourist destinations a tip is automatically added. There is without exception, always a box for adding a further gratuity. I’m not sure the thinking is to deliberately catch people out, I suspect the hospitality industry in the US has made it clear to the EPOS paper manufacturers it is what they want. Again, I think the US market is aware of this practice, and I’ve never heard colleagues in the US comment negatively on it. I used to find it a bit irksome but over time you get used to it and it’s not the server’s fault the bill is presented in this way.

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