October 2, 2019

Living in America: Tips For Tipping?

Money left as a tip is expected in the USA. Photo: Public Domain Pictures
Okay, so you're a large party of Brits 'giving it large' (being obnoxious) in a restaurant in the USA, you've eaten a fine meal and the waitress has been very attentive and refilled your drinks after you've taken a sip and asked in a cheery voice "Is there anything else I can get you?!" about twenty thousand times and you've finally asked for the bill, which they've speedily brought you because they want you out of here if you ain't going to order anything else! Make way for another paying customer, sucka!

Now, you may or may not be familiar with America and it's custom of tipping your wait staff. In some parts of the USA, such as New York City, it's customary to tip everyone. The taxi driver, the bellboy, the man that looked at your shoes on the subway and nodded appreciatively at their shine. (Okay, maybe not that last one)

But to tip your wait staff in the US is very common and, yes, even if they didn't give you good service it is still expected to tip. If you're in a large party of perhaps 7 or more people, they don't give you a choice. The tip is automatically added on to the bill (Look for the word 'Gratuity' on your bill to see how much they factored in)

My personal opinion on the subject is they should be paid a fairer wage rather than allowing the restaurant owners to rely on them getting tips to make up their wage packet so they don't have to pay them. I've been told that not tipping is being mean to the employee but I'm not the one who's employing them. The manager is the one who is being mean to the employee by not paying them as much as they deserve.

Then on the other side is this question: If tips were totally abolished and wait staff were paid a fairer wage, would they go above and beyond like many do to earn their keep? Some wait staff need that tip and they are on the ball with their table. If you've taken two sips of that iced tea, they'll be there to refill it. If you're looking around the table for something, they will be asking you what you need. Some of them might even feed you and then burp you but that was one time in Texas Roadhouse and it was very embarrassing due to the language barrier. I ended up paying for that poor waiter's therapy. If you're reading this Bob, I'm very sorry and you'd make an excellent nanny.

So, this is a hot topic among foreigners who've experienced the process and there are valid points on both sides of the argument. So where do you stand on it?

Let me know in the comments below! Also, don't forget to tip for this wonderful service I've provided for you. Thanks.


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