The tipping thread

Discussion in 'Restaurant Reviews' started by kuan, Feb 7, 2006.

  1. kuan

    kuan Moderator Staff Member

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    My question is why a fixed percentage and since when has 20% become standard?

    Suppose you had a pile of sushi at some generic sushi restaurant - $75

    Suppose you had the prix fixe at Tru - $75

    Suppose you had Tournedos Rossini and Caesar Salad prepared tableside at Fifi's (a hole in the wall restaurant in Toledo, Ohio) - $75

    Would you tip the same?

    (Fifi's is actually less than $75 but le'ts assume $75 for the sake of argument)
     
  2. shroomgirl

    shroomgirl

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    yeah probably or close, but what I would do differently would be to tip the sushi maker as well as the waitstaff. Just divide the 20% into whatever seems equatable at the time.
     
  3. nicko

    nicko Founder of Cheftalk.com Staff Member

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    To tell you the truth I never go off the final amount it is all about the person who is serving. If they went out of their way and really tried to give the best service then I tip heavy. I have been in some very nice restaurants only to leave 0 for the tip because the server was a complete snob. On the flip side Kuan I have been in diners and left a large tip because the service was so good.
     
  4. andrew563

    andrew563

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    Thats how I tip, based on service. I have even had some servers/bartenders say I tipped too much.
     
  5. deltadoc

    deltadoc

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    To me tips are like wages. The more they do for me, and better the quality of what they do for me, equates to the amount of tip I leave.

    It doesn't take a whole lot more work to deliver an expensive steak than a hamburger (in general). Attitude definitely is part of the "work" that they get tipped for. Maybe they may have a great attitude in general, but maybe they "put on the ritz" specifically because it is part of their profession to be gracious and pleasing to the customer.

    doc
     
  6. kuan

    kuan Moderator Staff Member

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    I feel the same way too somewhat, like it's work. You can drop the same amount on dinner at a steakhouse as you would at Gary Danko, so why should we tip based on percentage right?
     
  7. shroomgirl

    shroomgirl

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    OK guys so how do you figure out what your dropping on the waitstaff at the end of dinner?

    Come up with interesting scenerios, everything from diner to fine dining to casual bistro.....some have more staff waiting on you than others.
     
  8. deltadoc

    deltadoc

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    Whether its one server or seven, it matters how much total work and attitude was expended in serving me. Obviously, seven waitpersons would, in general, equate to more "work", therefore more "tip".

    How they split it up amongst themselves is beyond the realm of my business!

    doc
     
  9. someday

    someday

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    I'm gonna stay away from this one lol...
     
  10. andrew563

    andrew563

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    Hey someday, check out the thread I started.
     
  11. gonefishin

    gonefishin

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    I know I'm guilty of just handing out a 20% tip. Everyone starts at 20% and really has to turn in a poor service to move any lower.

    I suppose that's good news for the waitstaff, but I'm (now) thinking that I should rethink my tipping practices.

    Funny thing is, I've been running into some horrible service lately (from both expensive and inexpensive restaurants).

    :smiles:

    dan
     
  12. plongeur

    plongeur

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    There's a standard 15% added to every restaurant bill here in France, and increasingly in the UK (although there it's 10-20% and usually 12.5). You don't HAVE to pay it by law, but most people do so automatically. And generally leave some change on the table too.
     
  13. nick.shu

    nick.shu

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    heh, here in Aus, tipping is a gratuity based on the level of service - but however is not a given. That probably explains Aussies somewhat reticence to tip.

    Personally, i dont work on a percentage, but then again living standards and pay awards are different here

    I suppose cultural views stemming from an eglitarian society - vis a vis "you arent any different to me, you just work in a different industry", in fact to some aussies, it could be misconstrued as an insult, but there you go.
     
  14. mezzaluna

    mezzaluna

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    I waited tables in a small diner in college (as well as working in the kitchen) so I that gave me some perspective.

    I start with 15% and go from there. If it's breakfast at a diner-type place, the price isn't going to be high but the pace of the meal is fast. Breakfast food seems to me to get cold faster, so if my breakfast order is hot, that's a plus. Frequent returns for coffee and timely delivery of the check are important, too. Generally I wind up tipping up to 30% for excellent breakfast service.

    Come to think of it, my expectation of the service is highly influenced by timing. If I'm pressed for time, I inform the service and let them know I appreciate an effort to accommodate my haste. If they comply, I tip more heavily- 20% or more. In my area, 15% is the baseline, so that's a little heavier tip.

    I often meet long-time friends at restaurants so we can catch up with eachother. I realize this means the table won't turn over very quickly, so I make sure to tell the server we'll be lingering and I'll make it worth their trouble. I can't say the percentage boost it'd be, but it's definitely a generous tip.

    But any excellent service, whether it's based on special requests or timing, will be rewarded. Unless the service is REALLY bad, I don't go below 15%.
     
  15. jock

    jock

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    In the SF Bay Area 15% is the norm. Here in the City the tax is 8.5% so I usually just double the amount of tax for a 17% tip. I round up or down from there depending on the level of service. Really good service will get you 20%. Much more than that seems excessive to me and I would never go as high as 30% even if they laid rose petals on the path to my table. I mean, where should it end? If 30% becomes the norm providers of good service will expect 40% and so on. Pretty soon the tip will be more than the bill! All right, maybe that is a bit far fetched but you have to draw the line somewhere.

    Just one diner's opinion.

    Jock
     
  16. jolly roger

    jolly roger Banned

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    Here's my M.O....I give 15% if the service sucked. 15% to me is like saying to the server: "I understand that this is customary and you could have earned 30%, but you choose to not care enough to make my dining experience mediocre at best." Bar staff, I tip a standard 20% if I don't know who my bartender is. If it's friend of mine, I'll throw an extra ten-spot at 'em and I usually get a free drink out it. Some places though servers work 100% on tips, they don't even get the 2.53 an hour that is the standard hourly wage.
     
  17. panini

    panini

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    When tipping a server, I never take into consideration the food.
    I most always adjust the tip based on time and service. I'm a slow diner. I will always tell my server up front. I'll let you know when we're coming to a close. If I figure they might have missed a turn on the table I will always double. I only tip our front server. it is their job to take care of the rest, including the sommelier, but not the Chef. If the kitchen is run without the head chef present, I may sometimes tip the chef preparing the meal.
    The one thing I try not to do is buy good service. I have no respect for a server that will neglect another diner to attend to me because I'm known for good tipping. That might be the only time I have stiffed someone.
     
  18. cook-jetto

    cook-jetto

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    yea you have to tip...I always shoot for 15%-20

    ill give 5 $ if its 20$$ or under( the bill)
     
  19. cook-jetto

    cook-jetto

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    yea you have to tip...I always shoot for 15%-20 you have to

    ill give 5 $ if its 20$$ or under( the bill)
     
  20. blade55440

    blade55440

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    I tend to start at a base of 20% and alter it during the experience. Up/down accordingly.