Wednesday 30 May 2012

Tippety Tip Tip

A lot of you waiters and waitresses out there are probably going to hate this post....

....but not as much as I hate the idea of tipping. 

Now, I don’t “hate” tipping, just the idea of it. Every time you go to a restaurant, you’re expected to leave a tip in addition to paying your bill. Once upon a time it was 10%. What is it now? 15%? 20? Whatever the amount, I think it’s ridiculous. Back in the day a tip was only rewarded to those who provided above and beyond service, and by people who had the extra bucks to leave a little extra somethin’ somethin’. 
It seems that nowadays you HAVE to tip whether the service is great, good, or terrible. You wouldn’t believe how many times I hear “Wow, that was the worst service I’ve ever had. She’s only getting a 5% tip from me”.

If the service was bad, THEN WHY WOULD YOU TIP AT ALL???? That doesn’t make any sense.

I know that at some bars and restaurants, if the people you serve don’t leave you a tip, then you (the waiter/waitress) have to pay out of your own pocket. I sincerely think that shouldn’t be allowed, but I question people who agree to work at places with such outrageous terms. Your tip at the end of the night is a bonus; something you get in addition to your regular pay. Bonuses are rewarded for going the extra mile. Not for carrying out the duties of your job description that you’re already expected/paid to do. 

You know what’s worse than feeling obligated to tip, or having someone you're dining with add money to your tip because they felt it was too small an amount? Having the tip automatically added onto your bill! I was at a restaurant with some friend last week, and the establishment added a 25% tip onto the total of my bill. Ridiculous! Then while I was paying with debit, the machine had the nerve to ask me to punch in how much of a tip I wanted to leave. Seriously? I have to tip 50% now? Don’t they know I’m a poor student who’s just lucky enough to enjoy a meal out? Does this mean I have to intentionally order a cheap meal so I have enough money left in my wallet for a tip?

The bigger question is, why is it that waiters, waitress, and bartenders are the only people we tip?

I work in a plus size clothing store, and a few months ago an 11 year old girl came in with her dad to buy some new clothes for school. She was really shy at first, and told me she didn’t quite fit in at school because all of the other girls had nicer clothes. I felt for her, and spent the next two hours picking out clothes she would look adorable in. By the end of it, we were laughing and having a great time as she strut her stuff across the store in pieces of her new wardrobe. Her and her dad continuously thanked me for my time and help, and assured me they’d be back. They were about to leave the store, but before they reached the door, the girl came back and gave me a hug and thanked me one last time. 

They didn’t offer me a tip, nor did I expect one. I spent more time with this customer than I do with most customers, and put tons more thought into the garments I was picking out, because I know what it’s like to be an 11 year old girl; I knew this shopping trip was important to her. 

My point is, I didn’t go “above and beyond” in hopes of getting a tip. I did it because it was something I wanted to do, and hey, it’s the job I get paid for. 

I’m not saying I’m going to stop tipping (it’s “socially acceptable” dontcha know) and I’m not saying that you should stop tipping. But maybe you should consider also tipping the teachers giving your kids an education, or the nurse who makes sure you’re comfortable in your hospital bed at night, or the people behind the phones at 311 who get yelled at everyday by people asking silly questions all day. 

If you’re going to tip one group of workers, why not tip ‘em all?


  1. oh, i TOTALLY agree!!!!! if i'm getting appalling service i'm usually not shy to tell the server. usually, they try a little harder after that. if they don't, i just don't give them a tip.

    and yeah, why are servers the only ones who get tips? that's stooopid lol

  2. Exactly. Bad service shouldn't lead to a bonus. I'm going to come down to your work and tip you, Jamie :D

  3. In some cultures students "tip" instructors, although they don't call it that. It's more like little gifts at Christmas.

    Just saying!

  4. Lol, is that a hint for us? I guess that sort of thing happens here too, but it's usually just a few students who initiate it.