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Gargantuan Tipping

post #1 of 32
Thread Starter 
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?
post #2 of 32
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.
They have taken the oath of the brother in blood, in leavened bread and salt. Rudyard Kipling
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They have taken the oath of the brother in blood, in leavened bread and salt. Rudyard Kipling
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post #3 of 32
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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"If we're not supposed to eat animals, why are they made of meat?" Jo Brand
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post #4 of 32
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.
They have taken the oath of the brother in blood, in leavened bread and salt. Rudyard Kipling
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They have taken the oath of the brother in blood, in leavened bread and salt. Rudyard Kipling
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post #5 of 32
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by bughut View Post

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
post #6 of 32
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. :)
post #7 of 32

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!!!!!

post #8 of 32
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. 
post #9 of 32

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.

post #10 of 32
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.
post #11 of 32

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.

post #12 of 32
Thread Starter 
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!)
post #13 of 32
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.
They have taken the oath of the brother in blood, in leavened bread and salt. Rudyard Kipling
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They have taken the oath of the brother in blood, in leavened bread and salt. Rudyard Kipling
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post #14 of 32
Thread Starter 
I've thought about writing this on a napkin: TIP: MATCHING SOCKS
hahaha
post #15 of 32
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.
post #16 of 32

I usually don't go over 25%, and thats if the service is exceptional.

post #17 of 32

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.

post #18 of 32

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?

"If ya ain't got teamwork...ya ain't got didley" Laverne Di Fozzio
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"If ya ain't got teamwork...ya ain't got didley" Laverne Di Fozzio
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post #19 of 32

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

post #20 of 32

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.

 

 

post #21 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by bagofskittles View Post

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


I usually do something like that as well. Last xmas I met a guy at the bar who was oogling the scotch list and we talked for a while about scotch and what we've tried....joked that some day we'll spring for the 25yr scotch at 145$ a pour.

 

As I was leaving, I had the bartender send him over a pour.

 

I've done that a few times since. paid for a couples whole meal once, we were out for my birthday at Blue Hill stone barns and sat next to a couple who was there for their 60'th anniversary, we chatted a little bit. On the way out we picked up there check. I'm a big fan of the pay it forward.

post #22 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by RPMcMurphy View Post

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.

 

 

PF Changs is one of the few chain restaurants I like to go to.  I had a similar experience, where I wanted a both, and the server said no and ran to a table, I mentioned this to the manager and appetizers were free.

 

I hate tip pooling as well, and when the bad waiter/waitress has a good day, they always seem to not contribute to the pool that day.
 

post #23 of 32

When we go out to eat it is usually as a family. With three young children I unfortunately end up paying $10 for a bowl of mac and cheese, and inevitably, make a huge mess. So I always tip over 20% seeing as these poor people have to clean up after us.

  I agree w/ Agchief those tip jars at McCoffee are ridiculous. You didn't even put the sugar and cream in there, I had to do it myself. If you're lucky the barista (i think that's what they're called) will leave room in the cup for you to put cream/milk.

   As far as the worst tip, that was reserved for the waitress in Chicago airport. We had to wait over an hour for the check, in a completely abandoned restaurant! We only got the check (after asking twice) because started to leave w/out paying. I think we left her lint, I doubt she got the point.

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post #24 of 32

Bill Maher once said about the tip jars at to go counters, "I tip people who are waiting on me, not people I'm waiting on." 

 

BDL

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post #25 of 32

Since I've never had an extra $100 or so to burn, I've never dropped a massive tip like that.  What I usually do is 20%, just because it's easier to calculate.  Then I'll round up or down to the nearest dollar depending on the service.  I also tip strictly on service & not on the quality of the food.  If the food is bland or overcooked, that's not the server's fault.  On the other hand, if I have to wait forever to get my drink refilled or they don't bring out the correct condiments for me, I'm going to be ticked off.

post #26 of 32

The $100 tip reminds me of a story about Frank Sinatra.  He was a notoriously generous tipper.  The story has several variations but the one that I looked up goes like this:

 

 

Frank is in the parking lot of a top Las Vegas hotel and he says to the admiring attendant ......

"hey kid what is the biggest tip you've ever been given ?".

The kid replies "$100 Mr Sinatra"

Frank replies "wow - well here's $200 and when people ask next time you tell em Frank Sinatra gave it to you"

Curiously Frank then asks the kid - by the way who gave that big tip ?

The kid smiles and replies - "you did" !

 

+D.

post #27 of 32
Quote:
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."

 

This is so funny! I've found that the restaurants that send you a feedback form with the check are usually the ones that would earn good feedback anyway. Sometimes I do want to leave tips like this. Especially at a Korean restaurant, with a Korean menu, where the server doesn't know what the dishes are even made of, let alone what they taste like. It's happened!

post #28 of 32

Service in Asian restaurants with a primarily Asian clientele can be a little different, and might seem rude to those not to used to it.  A waiter's first priority is going to be the owner and not the customer.  When your server ignores your desparate pleas for water in order to clean five empty tables for which there's no demand -- that's why.    

 

I find that approaching the situation with good will, patience and charm works wonders. If you're into finding out what an Asian cuisine is all about, you also need to bring enough stubborn sincerity to convince the server that you want to try the real thing and won't panic if it comes from an "icky" part of the animal.  I also find that asking for an ingredient list with a dish descpription doesn't work when the server not only can't tranlsate her names for the ingredients into your language, but has little familiarity with the food of your culture. No matter how much frustration you muster, it won't help.  What will help is a few words of the language.  You'd be surprised at how far "please," "thank you," "delicious," and "check" can take you. 

 

That means that if your kimchee is too spicy for you to bear, or has a bunch of oysters in it which you did not expect -- you don't get to complain or send it back. 

 

With regard to Korean food specifically:  "What's in it?"  Chili, garlic, and something fermented.  If you don't like chili, garlic, and something fermented your safe with jiapjae.  They're yam noodle "comfort food" and you will like them. Bibimbap (vegetables on rice with a fried egg, sometimes with beef), bulgogi and galbi also rate high on the safety scale. 

 

BDL

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post #29 of 32

My band and I once played a gig at a crumby little club where drinks were half off for the band, but I had thought that they were free.  So I ordered a drink and had to pay it in change, and I didn't have any left for a tip.  The bartender was pretty fuming so maybe I should've dedicated a song to her that night but instead I avoided her like the plague...

post #30 of 32

haha, that happens ... honest mistake!

 

I have tipped close to the same amount of the bill at times, especially if the server does a great job. I eat out and go to bars a lot with friends and family and if the server pays attention to us, interacts with us and is attentive, I usually always tip well.

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