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Are you a bad tipper?

Discussion in 'Social Life, Food & Drink, Travel' started by Ambulance Chaser, Feb 4, 2005.

  1. drizzt3117

    drizzt3117 Well-Known Member

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    I use a formula to calculate tips at US restaurants that are nicer than quick casual.

    I start with 15% and add or subtract based on certain events and guidelines.

    Generally if I ask for something, and it isn't done promptly, I will subtract 2-5% from the tip. If they attempt to remove plates w/o being asked or it being obvious that I want them removed (I will generally place them outside my eating area) then I will subtract 2-3%, I may also subtract 1-2% if my water (or wine) isn't refilled when it's obvious it needs to be. I always subtract 5% if I am brought my check before I ask for it, that is one of my biggest pet peeves.

    I will add 2-5% for good service and 5-10% for exceptional service.
     
  2. Nonk

    Nonk Well-Known Member

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    I have no idea what age "gradeschool" refers to, but anyone who takes young children to a restaurant should not only tip the staff well, but should also visit every table to apologise to the other patrons for ruining their evening and compensate them accordingly.
     
  3. ViroBono

    ViroBono Well-Known Member

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    Absolutely. I recently went out for dinner to a restaurant in an affluent area. There appeared to be children at almost every table; that is, when they were not running about. The noise was incredible. Going to the lavatory involved negotiating an assault course of pushchairs and yet more children. The staff made no attempt to ask parents to control their ill-mannered spawn.

    Just as restaurants have no-smoking tables, perhaps they should also have no-children tables.

    Some parents I know claim that they have to take their children because they cannot get babysitters - I imagine that they have neither cellar or lockable garden shed, then.
     
  4. hopkins_student

    hopkins_student Well-Known Member

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    I get a little tired of hearing people bitch about children at restaurants. I understand they can cause a disturbance, but I'm sure we all, at some point, disturbed others as well.
     
  5. imageWIS

    imageWIS Well-Known Member

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    I have had extraordinary waiters at chain restaurants before and my tipping reflected this. However, I have been in fantastically expensive (as compared to Boca Raton's average prices) restaurants, and whilst the food was excellent, the service was merely service, nothing to warrant a lack or gain of attention towards the server. Granted, the food is the most important part of the meal, but without service, you should just order takeout and eat at home.

    Jon.
     
  6. uriahheep

    uriahheep Well-Known Member

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    How much is one expected to tip when ordering carryout?
     
  7. drizzt3117

    drizzt3117 Well-Known Member

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    I typically don't tip when ordering carryout... how much do they expect to get for just handing you a bag?
     
  8. Ambulance Chaser

    Ambulance Chaser Well-Known Member

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    Agreed.  I consider carryout to be the equivalent of fast food.
     
  9. hopkins_student

    hopkins_student Well-Known Member

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    Since carryout is usually under $20, I add a dollar and round up the change to the next dollar.
     
  10. hopkins_student

    hopkins_student Well-Known Member

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    What do you tip for delivery?
     
  11. uriahheep

    uriahheep Well-Known Member

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    I'd like to know about pizza delivery tipping. Often there's already a delivery charge, but...?
     
  12. drizzt3117

    drizzt3117 Well-Known Member

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    I'll usually tip a couple bucks for Pizza delivery, maybe 10% or so of the bill, rounded up to the nearest dollar. Funny story though, I once got into an altercation over this, some guy from Dominos was delivering a pizza and it was 30 minutes late or so, and was taking exception to not receiving a tip...he quickly learned this wasn't the best idea when delivering to an apartment full of drunk and hungry people though...
     
  13. Ambulance Chaser

    Ambulance Chaser Well-Known Member

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    Jerry Seinfeld once said (and I'm roughly paraphrasing here) that tipping has gone from rewarding good service to rewarding "the absence of hostility."  I applaud your willingness to deviate from the social norm that demands a 15% tip regardless of the level of service.  Have you ever given a zero tip (which is theoretically possible under your guidelines) for bad service that met each one of your pet peeves?
     
  14. drizzt3117

    drizzt3117 Well-Known Member

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    Sure, I do that from time to time if I get absymal service.
     
  15. Kevin

    Kevin Well-Known Member

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    I can't believe I let this thread slip past me.  I've been a server and bartender at chain restaurants for five years now, and getting back to the original topic, these servers have every right to vent.  I urge more of you to actually pay attention to what they say instead of turning away with your noses held aloft.  As for fine dining, those establishments operate on an entirely different paradigm than your local casual place.  Since I'm jumping on this thread so late, I'll address only a few of the points made thus far:

    1.  Take out orders - we do not simply hand you a bag.  Often we will finish the food, ensure that it is complete and to your specification, and keep it presentable for when you arrive to get it.  Since we're not actually waiting on you, we don't expect a full tip, but a dollar or two is appreciated, especially if there are substitutions or a complicated order.

    2.  Tip - 15% is the starting point.  Deduct as you feel appropriate, but you should add with the same enthusiasm as you subtract.  We'll do whatever is takes to make you happy.  Don't reward us by leaving the standard.

    3.  "Camping Out" - Take your time, eat at your own pace, and enjoy yourself.  We want you to have a good time.  But you've come to eat, not to lounge.  If you want to continue your conversation, go to the bar area and grab a table there.  We appreciate your tip, but you are costing us money by sitting at our tables for excessive periods.

    4.  Wages - yes, we are paid, but this pay is always minimum wage, though the rate varies by state.  In NYS, we make $3.85 per hour.  Deduct taxes, and we basically subsist on tips alone.

    These are not mandates, but only my opinions as an insider.  And, yes, coincidentally, there are professional servers.

    Kevin
     
  16. drizzt3117

    drizzt3117 Well-Known Member

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    Umm, shouldn't we expect the food is complete, presentable, and to our specification because we paid for it? Carryout is analogous to going to a gas station and asking for a pack of cigarettes, should the cashier be tipped in that case?

    IMO if the server gives good service, they will receive a 15% tip. A tip is a gratuity, meaning it's given according by my choice, as a reward for good service. It's not mandatory.

    I agree with this to a some extent. I think helping your children with their math shouldn't be a use of a restaurant. However, going there, having a conversation, and having a good time, is the purpose of a restaurant, and given those parameters, patrons should be able to stay as long as they like. Most likely (but not always) people will order coffee, drinks, etc... during this time anyways.

    Noone forced you (or anyone else) to be a server. Some people may tip less than 15% or (in rare cases) not at all, but that just comes with the territory.
     
  17. ViroBono

    ViroBono Well-Known Member

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    Not me. I wouldn't have dared to misbehave in a restaurant when I was small.

    Parents should just remove their children when they misbehave rather than continuing to inflict them on others. Presumably they chose to breed, so should take the responsibility that comes with children.

    It's the way that parents either find the toe-curling antics of their spawn amusing (and think we all should), or just ignore them that grips me.
     
  18. Mike

    Mike Well-Known Member

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    "I'm very sorry the government taxes their tips, that's fucked up. That ain't my fault. It would seem to me that waitresses are one of the many groups the government fucks in the ass on a regular basis. Look, if you ask me to sign something that says the government shouldn't do that, I'll sign it, put it to a vote, I'll vote for it, but what I won't do is play ball. And as for this non-college bullshit I got two words for that: learn to fuckin' type, 'cause if you're expecting me to help out with the rent you're in for a big fuckin' surprise." - Mr. Pink, Reservoir Dogs Just a little humor, folks. Its a little harsh, but I think its funny. I work in the cafeteria two days a week serving lunch. We serve, on average, between 400 and 600 people a day in there. I don't get tipped, and I do a helluva lot more than someone just "finishing off" the plate, and after the meal is over I have to clean up the serving area, with others, and clean the tables in the dining area. Apparently, because I don't walk the plate out to the table and hand it to them at the line, I'm not entitled to that little extra something. I'm not angry that I don't get tipped, as I'm sure people at Burger King aren't either. I can't see people who do get tipped to get angry because the amount of it doesn't meet their high standards. As I said in a previous post, I tip well when the service is well and I tip ok if the service is just ok.
     
  19. Kevin

    Kevin Well-Known Member

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    No, that instance is in retail and is not analogous.  In the service industry, tipping is a way of saying that your services are appreciated.  In this case, the service was minimal, hence the minimal tip.  This is the same reason you tip the paperboy - you expect the newspaper will be in your box, complete, but you still tip anyway.  You tip a shoeshine because he shined your shoes.  

    You are absolutely correct.  If the service was abysmal, I wouldn't leave a tip either.

    I'm not fishing for sympathy here.  Many servers do quite well for themselves, even on substandard tips.  My point here is that though wage laws vary between states, the service minimum wage is not the same is it is in other areas (NYS regular minimum is now $6.00, I believe).  Most people do not know this.  If they did, they may feel encouraged to add an extra percent here or there.

    I will now duck and cover in my trench until the barrage is over.
    K
     
  20. Nonk

    Nonk Well-Known Member

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    I cannot recall even being taken to a restaurant before the age of about 9 or 10, and on the very, very rare occasions I was taken after that age I can assure the forum I behaved myself, and sat in one place, quietly, and ate my food, not played with it, threw it, screamed, ran around, visited other tables, tried theirs, tripped people up etc, which I find common behaviour now. My father was most clear about what was expected and used old fashioned methods to ensure that I complied with his wishes on the subject.

    I cannot even understand why people take young children at all, never mind try to comprehend their lack of parental guidance when they are there. What does a 4 or 5 year old actually get out of visiting a restaurant?

    Ban them until they are of a reasonable age, and get them out of the pubs too, children's certificate indeed, Pagh.
     

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