Gargantuan Tipping

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Joined Apr 17, 2010
About 25 years ago we left $30 for a $8 meal (those were the days). I can't even remember what the waitress had done that was so special, but you should've seen her face. It was truly worth it. And look what a long-lasting memory we created.

What's the most you've ever overtipped?
 
6,367
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Joined Feb 1, 2007
I don't believe you can over tip. Service is worth whatever you're willing to pay for it.

There have been several times when we've tipped as much as the meal cost. And other times where the tip was small, or even non-existent.
 
1,730
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Joined Aug 18, 2007
It took me years to persuade OH to actually tip.

I know things are different in the UK. waiting staff are paid at least the minimum wage and dont rely on tips to make up their wages. But he would pay the bill and as we walked out of the restaurant, I'd comment on the meal and say how much they had deserved their tip and he would just look sheepish!

Now he's a blooming star. Sometimes I'm gob-smacked at how generous he is.

We have no idea how to tip in the US. From posts I've read in the past, it does seem a tad dodgy. One could find a waiter chasing down the street to throw abuse for a patrons apparent stingyness... On average we give 15-20% and a wee bit more for a wee bit more.???
 
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Joined Feb 1, 2007
15-20% is about standard in the U.S., Bughut. Lately it's been moving more towards the 20% mark.

I still use 15% as the base line, and go up or down from there depending on the quality of the service.
 
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Joined Apr 17, 2010
Sometimes I'm gob-smacked at how generous he is.
 
Bughut... gob-smacked? heeeheeee I love it.

Actually, I think it is a bit dodge tipping in the States. What's it like in the UK, usually? Isn't the tip included in the menu price sometimes?

Sherry
 
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Joined Sep 16, 2009
I usually tip 15% regardless of how the service was(except of course in extreme cases where the staff yells at you etc).  I used to wait tables and its like my way of giving back to the wait staff coz being a waiter can be hard!

When service is really really good then I leave a 20-25% tip. :)
 
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Joined Jan 12, 2010
I dine at three different restaurants at least once a month each for business. At a minimum, I tip 30% and sometimes I’ll tip 100% if I’m at the table for hours conducting business. Once the staff knows you are a good tipper, the service is impeccable; they know your name, they are quick, special orders are never a problem and they make the entire business meeting a great experience.

 

Bad service at a business lunch tends to put everyone in a bad mood. I can’t tell you how many times my clients were impressed and happy and I got deals done because of great service during a business lunch.

 

A few years ago just before Christmas, I landed a major client over lunch. We got there before noon and didn’t leave until after two. The waitress took care of us perfectly. She pampered my client, made him feel special and she even had the kitchen make him something that was not on the menu. I got a new client and the waitress received a $250.00 tip plus a 93 point bottle of 1990 Krug for her to celebrate the New Year.

 

When it comes to business lunches, great service is worth every penny!!!!!
 
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Joined Apr 24, 2010
I used to tip about 15% for average service, half that for poor service, and round-up-to-the-nearest-dollar-for-easy-bookkeeping for bad service. My policy is to NEVER not tip. If services is bad and you don't tip, you're still just stingy. If service is bad and you leave 23 cents, that sends a message.

That being said, I hardly ever actually do that. And the previous paragraph is kind of old for me nowadays.

These days, I typically just do 20% for <i>expected</i> (instead of average) service, which just depends on the place I'm at. That's partially for easy math, and it's partially because over the past several years I've learned how much hard work it can be, and I appreciate at least being taken care of to the expected amount. If it's sub par, these days, they'll still get 15% because, hey, they have to pay the bills. If they suck, it's still the round-up tipping.

So far as overtipping goes, the most I've done (percentage-wise) is about 200%. Granted, that was on a 12 dollar ticket. But I was hanging around late at night for a very long time working on a paper for class, and my waiter was absolutely awesome. When you're eating light and drinking only bottomless coffee, and the guy was as cool as he was, you've got to give 'em something to say, "Thank you."

Now, my bartender on the other hand, he regularly bankrupts me with the tips I give him. /img/vbsmilies/smilies/lol.gif
 
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Joined Jun 16, 2008
My 50th birthday came on formal night while I was at sea on a cruise. I was decked out in a black tuxedo complete with top hat and white gloves. My wife surprised me at dinner by having arranged for the waiter and his assistant to bring a decadent chocolate cake with a candle for the desert course. They joined in singing "Happy Birthday" as did some of the people at the nearby tables. For their participation in this most memorable 50th birthday I tipped each waiter $50 in addition to their tip at the end of the cruise.
 
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Joined Apr 29, 2010
I am in the business and have, over the past few years, noticed that the tipping does start at 20% and will go above if the guest feels we have done a stellar job..something I strive to do with each and every table.
I generally leave each night, after tipping out my coworkers who help me do my job, with 20% of my total sales in my pocket. If I leave with less than 20%, I reevaluate my evening's performance and see what I might have done to earn less than my normal  percentage rate.
 
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Joined Apr 29, 2010
As far as the largest tip I have ever received....it has to be a party of 10 business men, half of whom were Americans and half of whom were Japanese I served in Texas a number of years ago.
They left me $2500.00 on a total bill of $5000.00 PLUS a bottle of Opus One Wine (valued @ $180.) that they had ordered but did not finish. I had not yet opened it, but the host asked to have it placed on the tab and told me he was so overwhelmed with my professional service and it had set the stage for them to successfully land an important contract with the Japanese company.
I have had many 50% + tips over the 25+ years of serving and have been extremely grateful for each and every one of them. Receiving any tip 20% or better lets me know I am a professional at my job and my sincere hospitality is appreciated!

So a HUGE Thank You to those who appreciate stellar service and provide me with more than a verbal thank you tip as I wish them a pleasant evening while they are walking out the door.
 
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Joined Apr 17, 2010
KY Heirloomer, I totally agree that one can never overtip. Has anybody ever tipped more than 200%? What's the most you've ever tipped? For that matter, have you all tipped nothing, or do you leave 23 cents like Joshua sometimes, just to send a message? (Which is a very good way to do that!)
 
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Joined Feb 1, 2007
The problem with leaving no tip is that the server doesn't learn from it. Instead of seeing it as a sign of poor service, he or she concludes that you stiffed them.

For years I've half jokingly threatened to have some RSVP type cards made up. The envelope will say, "a tip for you." The card itself will say, "change your attitude," or, for truly bad service, "consider a career change."

I used to be a server, and couldn't agree more with EloNat's basic contention: A good server doesn't expect a tip; he or she expects to earn one.
 
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Joined May 4, 2010
i've tipped $100 for $5 worth of product before. of course, i had the money to burn at the time, but it was a sincere gesture.
 
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Joined May 17, 2010
the problem with tipping is that it is so subjective. maybe the server is having a bad night. maybe the kitchen screwed up. how are you to know? as a rule, i always tip 20% and more if i have received great service, but never less than 20%.

if you tip 20% nobody will ever recognize you the next time you come in. tip more than 20, you MIGHT be recognized and get great service. if you tip less or not at all, GOOD LUCK.

always tip 20% as a standard. 15% is so 1995. don't treat servers like second hand citizens. they're just trying to make a dollar like you and i, but their dollar relies on you and i. it's part of the bill. get over it or pack a sandwich, you shouldn't be dining out if you don't know the rules.
 
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Joined May 30, 2010
While I don't mind tipping the person who works hard to make a dining experience special.

I find...I'm somewhat annoyed with the ubiquitous tip jars.

I find them everywhere...from sandwich counter to the oil change place.

When does turning around and pouring a cup of coffee deserve a tip...isn't that what one is paid to do?
 
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Joined Aug 1, 2010
Every Christmas I tip someone 100 dollars... I actually missed this last Christmas... I guess I'll have to tip someone 200 this next coming one LOL
 
1,480
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Joined Jan 8, 2008
The other day, the missus and I were driving by it, and she, for some strange reason, likes PF Changs...so I gave in, and we went in. It was beautiful out, and I wanted to sit outside, there were about 4 tables leaving. I asked the two hostesses if we could sit outside and she said, rather rudely, 'no' and then walked to a table inside without me even able to get another question in, or her offering for me to wait.

My back was to the window, when we sat down....4 empty tables...I was fuming, but figured, it's PF Changs, accept it, as I'd had already punished myself by going there.

I guess the server read me pretty well, because he came over and asked if we'd like to sit outside, I said that I didn't wanna be 'that guy' and it was ok, but thanks for offering....for the rest of the lunch, his service was so good, he had saved the meal and while before him, I would have never went back to PF changs, I guess I'll consider it, when the wife begs.

I left him 25$ on a 24$ check. Cash.

The bar/restaurant I go to a few times a week, I tip 50% most always. and always cash.

What bothers me is not knowing if the staff is tip pooling.....I refuse to tip big if I know someone is tip pooling, I don't believe it in, from a customer point of view, and never will, I think it's unfair that restaurant don't notify customers that there is tip/service pooling.   I'd have no problem tipping 'the pool' 20%, as long as I can throw MY server another 20% and know it's going in HIS pocket.

I always, always always tip in cash.
 
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