Tipping screws poor people, women, brown people, restaurateurs, local economies and...you

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Not to mention baking into our culture a grotesque sense of passive-aggressive entitlement


Aside from getting to do away with the mental math at the end of the meal (I typically just slice off a zero from the total for ten percent and then double it for around a twenty percent tip - at least now that I’m a middle class schmuck instead of a lower middle class schmuck or a starving college student), I support this just to get rid of the smugness I’ve seen from rich d-bags who pretend they’re gifting the servers with their tip money after treating them like shit.

Charge a fair price for your food and service and pay your workers a fair wage for their efforts.


yeah, does anyone feel good about tipping? I thought it was universally either hated or accepted as a necessary evil. I tip well, but I don’t like having to - I’d rather pay more and know that the waiters were making a decent wage…but I also know that’s a hard line to pull when other, tipping supported restaurants around would have the illusion of being cheaper.


I do feel good about tipping but I would feel better about it if workers who currently depend on tips didn’t have to. My time in the food service industry, where I was in a position that allowed me to make more than the wait staff in spite of doing less work, convinced me that they should have been making at least as much as me. We both worked at the same restaurant. Tips could then be a customer’s way of saying, “Here’s something extra because you’ve got a shitty job.”

Also an older friend of mine worked at a movie theater when he was a teenager. I didn’t realize the tipping law included a clause for “entertainment venues” which the owner used as an excuse to pay employees wait staff wages. I still think about that and wonder if I should tip the person who tears my ticket.


The practice of tipping as a necessity for certain people to make a living wage needs to end.

However I don’t think that means that an individual choosing to opt out of leaving tips should get to feel all smug about helping society. We may have a broken system for compensating people in the service industry, but if you don’t leave tips OR do anything substantial to change that system then you’re not exactly doing those service workers a favor.


Here’s a good opportunity to read this:


I don’t think anyone enjoys tipping, but as long as servers are paid well below minimum wage, with a significant portion of their income coming from tips, I will continue to tip and tip well. I have no respect for people who took Reservoir Dogs to heart and refuse to tip. Tipping is not a racist practice.


Tipping is a horrible system, but it’s not a system an individual can opt out of. If you don’t tip - and tip well - you’re an asshole. And if you want to fight against tipping in general, patronize restaurants that DON’T rely on tipping, and support local politicians who want to end tipping. Don’t just not tip - that’s not going to make ANYONE’S life easier, and it’s not going to end tipping. It’s not like the food industry is incentivized to pay their employees more just because you don’t tip.


Yeah, they do. It’s a power thing.


Nothing illustrates the idiocy of tipping more than traveling abroad - especially to places like Japan where tipping is actually frowned upon. It’s so nice to just pay for a check and not have to worry about it.

Americans are so conditioned to automatically tipping 20% that we over-tip in situations where it’s not necessary like haircuts, coffee shops, taxis, and take out counters.

The worst are the places where there is not only a service fee already included in the check but an extra “additional tip” line added - like on a room service bill. I know that the tip is already included but it makes me feel like a schmuck if I don’t throw in a few extra bucks.


“You tip the man who delivers your pizza but not the man who delivers your baby.” —Dick Solomon, 3rd Rock from the Sun


Does anyone know how/where/when/why this system came about?

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Charge a fair price for your food and service and pay your workers a fair wage for their efforts.

Absolutely, as long as tipping isn’t discouraged.

Even if my server is well paid, if they deliver good service I’ll still show my appreciation with an appropriate tip.


I wasn’t supposed to?

Shit. 20% of that bill was…a lot.


I think it had something to do with a city in China.


Funny thing is, it was MORE awkward when I traveled to New Zealand; there, tipping isn’t mandatory or customary as servers earn a living wage. Instead, you’re encouraged to tip only for exceptional service. So while nobody will bat an eye if you don’t tip, my waiters would drop little hints: “I hope I’ve given you quite excellent service!” or “If you think my service was exceptional I’d appreciate any acknowledgement at the end of your meal!” and such, or giving us goo-goo eyes as we paid our bill. So we ended up tipping anyway. Instead of needing to tip, it’s a guilt-based system.


I don’t think anyone here is advocating not tipping. (Brainspore annotated himself, in fact he even italicized the same word you did).

But your absolutely right. Its not something individual behavior can really effect. Only patronizing venues that don’t rely on tipping relegates you to a handful of super high end places in venues like New York. As well as fast food and independent take out joints. So for a lot of people to avoid tipped worker establishments means not eating out or eating a lot of junk food. Its too baked into the system. When I run into people who flat out REFUSE to tip on some ideological basis, I explain the basics as laid out here (and else where). Then I tell them if they really don’t want to tip they either need to move to a country that extends basic labor rights to restaurant workers, or support progressive politicians who want to extend those rights here.

Its relatively frustrating watching the current debate on increasing the minimum wage. There’s very little attention paid to the tipped worker exceptions. And that’s not the only exception restaurant workers are subjected to (including sometimes non-tipped workers). We don’t get sick days, we don’t get vacation time, we aren’t eligible for benefits. And even the scant labor protections we’re entitled too go unenforced. Aside from the requirement to make up the difference if tipped wages don’t meet the non-tipped minimum wage almost never being enforced (never seen it happen). Its not uncommon where I am to get paid less than the tipped minimum. Its next to impossible to get follow through about sexual harassment claims (even against an employer), garnishment of tips is common through dozens of excuses, schedules are often manipulated in illegal fashion, and the status of our employment is ridiculously unstable. Among other things.

Its like this weird black hole where none of the labor rights we consider a base line actually apply.

And workers (especially servers, servers are the devil) will tell you how great it is and how they’d hate it if it changed. Because for a handful of days a year they walk out with x number of dollars! But if you actually look at the yearly take home it doesn’t look so hot. For every week or month where you make bank, there are more weeks and months where you head home with gas money or nothing. I’ve had summer months where I walk with 1 grand, cash, as a bartender over the week. But then the winter hits and I’m walking out with whatevers left of my shift pay. This time last year I was making about $100/week (I work someplace better now). Even if the overall wage went down, I’d be better off with more stability. And a $15/h minimum that applied to us would be an improvement for most, particularly if we could get access to that “overtime” concept I hear so much about (some places are required to pay it, and sometimes that’s actually enforced, so they use scumbag tactics to prevent it from happening. Basically at a lot of chain places you get fired if you work enough to qualify).