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Old 02-24-2015, 10:28 AM   #101
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Many places are debating to raise the minimum wages. Why don't they pass a law to do away with the tipping and mandate the minimum wages to be paid as salaries?
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Old 02-24-2015, 10:46 AM   #102
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Originally Posted by Midpack View Post
Maybe they make more than minimum wage now with tips. No one can produce the accounting, but wouldn't you think they'd get a minimum wage job if they weren't already making as much or more?

Many servers make a lot more than minimum wage now, and most restaurants (low, med & high end) I know of seem to have the same regular tipped wage servers for years. Turnover is far worse at fast food restaurants, where they are paid minimum wage, and there is no service - isn't that interesting?
The law guarantees that all workers are paid at least the minimum wage. However, with $2.50 a hour and tips into the equation, there is no GUARANTEE that the waiters be paid minimum wages. Does that break the law? Even if a waiter does not do well in a day, he is still guaranteed to get the minimum wage no matter what.
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Old 02-24-2015, 10:54 AM   #103
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Agreed! Now you can't even get away from the tipping option when ordering carry out. I only enjoy eating out when we go to a place that serves food we will never cook at home.
Says you, there's no way I'm tipping for a carry-out. Do you tip the cashier now for ringing up your bill at restaurants that have you pay at the register?

Carry-out is part of the job, there's no extra service being provided same as if you buy a hamburger at McDonald's.
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Old 02-24-2015, 11:00 AM   #104
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Oh the unfairness of it all.

I go to a restaurant for a $50 meal, tip is $10 for good service.

I go where its $250 meal and the service is good (the same good, after all how good can you carry a tray and ask "will there be anything else"?) and the tip is $50
I have a hard time with this too.
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Old 02-24-2015, 11:07 AM   #105
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One thing about tipping discussions is that we need to know the state laws governing minimum wage. In some states, tips can be used to bring the servers earnings up to the minimum wage. In other states tips are on top of the minimum wage. This makes a difference, IMHO.
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Old 02-24-2015, 11:10 AM   #106
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.... Why does the baggage handler at the airport need financial incentive to place my bag nicely on the conveyor belt or not put it on the wrong belt and send it to the wrong city?....
I'm sorry, this just made me laugh--a baggage carrier placing a bag nicely on a conveyor belt
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Old 02-24-2015, 11:13 AM   #107
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I think there is almost zero correlation between tip and service in most cases.

It could be different in a business where you see the same person time and time again (like a hair stylist for some people?), and have an actual 'relationship' - there the tip might mean something. Even there I'm curious - what would a hair stylist do (assuming you make an appointment with a specific person each time, like DW does), if you gave a 10% tip versus a 25% tip (I'm assuming 15-20% is typical?)? Would you get better/worse service the next time?

Funny thing is, the people that I have that sort of 'relationship' with, are places that don't traditionally accept tips (AFAIK). My dental assistant (they can certainly make a difference in your experience if they are careful and take time when they need to, and learn where you are sensitive or need special care), and car mechanics.
I realize that you can get good service from people without tipping. But to offer a different perspective with your statement above on how often you see the same person vs never seeing them again - that's a great reason why restaurants DO have tipping.

It's impossible for a restaurant manager to know how every employee is doing. Furthermore, would you want a restaurant manager following around employees non-stop while they're taking orders, serving food, filling your iced tea, etc., to see if they are polite and doing a good job? The managers (and the owners) have no idea, on average, how each waiter is doing and treating the customers. And since hardly anyone ever sees the same waitperson again (even if you go to the same restaurant), 98%+ of tips left by someone will never be associated with that same waiter/waitress or same patron again. (yes, some of you know a few waiters - but think about the sheer magnitude of restaurant tables filled every day across the US, and how many of those people ever see the same waitperson again).

Because of this, tipping is a good way for restaurant owners to ensure that the employees are doing their best to interact with customers in a polite, friendly manner, and do a good job in having them order exactly what they want (and hopefully more) - which directly benefits the waitperson through more tips. If a waitperson is really bad, they will suffer through poor compensation. There isn't much other way for the manager or owner to know exactly how good of a server they have working for them (other than to put hidden cameras/microphones all over - but even then, it would take hours every day to review the various footage).

And yes, if you have a hair stylist you go to every time, or some other service provider, then it could be a good idea to tip fairly (assuming tipping is built into the employment model).

As far as comparing to other countries without tipping? I haven't traveled a great deal out of the US, but my memories of it in 'average' restaurants are of an average service level that was truly below that of the average American waitperson. I'm sure there are many restaurants in other countries that have good service without tips, just as there are many waitstaff that would work just as crappily if they had a flat wage or depended on tips - but I wouldn't automatically assume "service in American restaurants is the same as anywhere else in the world".
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Old 02-24-2015, 11:13 AM   #108
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The law guarantees that all workers are paid at least the minimum wage. However, with $2.50 a hour and tips into the equation, there is no GUARANTEE that the waiters be paid minimum wages. Does that break the law? Even if a waiter does not do well in a day, he is still guaranteed to get the minimum wage no matter what.
If the employee doesn't get enough in tips to make the "regular" minimum wage (including the $2.50 from the employer), then the employer must make up the difference. That's the official guarantee.
This assumes the tipped employee is reporting all tips to the employer. Many do not report these tips to their employer (so that they can avoid paying payroll taxes and income taxes on that amount).
If an employee (maybe with the tacit approval of the employer) is conducting their affairs so they can avoid paying taxes due under the law, then I think it is safe to assume they are doing it for their financial benefit (i.e. they are making more take-home pay by avoiding reporting their tips than if they reported them and got the "make up" pay to match minimum wage). Discouraging this is good for everyone (except cheaters).
So, if you care about assuring tipped employees are actually making the mandated minimum wage, don't leave a cash tip on the table, put it on a credit card with the rest of the bill. That way it does get reported to the business, and they count it as compensation received by the employee. Also, this assures people pay taxes on the income they earn, including taxes needed to support the Social Security system. For low-income employees, SS is a tremendously good deal, and getting these tips on their SS record may actually do them so good a few decades down the road.
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Old 02-24-2015, 11:15 AM   #109
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It's impossible for a restaurant manager to know how every employee is doing. Furthermore, would you want a restaurant manager following around employees non-stop while they're taking orders, serving food, filling your iced tea, etc., to see if they are polite and doing a good job? The managers (and the owners) have no idea, on average, how each waiter is doing and treating the customers.
Really?

Surely, they have an idea of the number of customer complaints, improperly taken orders, conflicts with other employees, etc. of their employees.
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Old 02-24-2015, 11:18 AM   #110
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Many places are debating to raise the minimum wages. Why don't they pass a law to do away with the tipping and mandate the minimum wages to be paid as salaries?
You want a law to forbid one person from voluntarily giving money to another person? Maybe this is something that can be solved without the police power of the state.
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Old 02-24-2015, 11:39 AM   #111
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You want a law to forbid one person from voluntarily giving money to another person? Maybe this is something that can be solved without the police power of the state.
The problem is that tipping is not voluntary.
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Old 02-24-2015, 11:45 AM   #112
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Why don't they pass a law to do away with the tipping and mandate the minimum wages to be paid as salaries?
because more laws are generally bad - we need less laws in this country, not more

I prefer to reward good service on a voluntary basis
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Old 02-24-2015, 11:52 AM   #113
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Maybe it's just me. I gave the guy who replaced my windshield $20. When someone makes a big delivery at home (furniture, TV, something heavy, etc) I'll give each person a $20.

Just my way of saying "thanks for your help". No one ever looked uncomfortable, embarrassed, offended or ...ever refused.
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Old 02-24-2015, 11:58 AM   #114
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Maybe it's just me. I gave the guy who replaced my windshield $20. When someone makes a big delivery at home (furniture, TV, something heavy, etc) I'll give each person a $20.

Just my way of saying "thanks for your help". No one ever looked uncomfortable, embarrassed, offended or ...ever refused.
agreed - last time we moved I think we tipped the movers about $80 a piece - (an additional $10 an hour)
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Old 02-24-2015, 12:08 PM   #115
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Originally Posted by MooreBonds View Post

It's impossible for a restaurant manager to know how every employee is doing. Furthermore, would you want a restaurant manager following around employees non-stop while they're taking orders, serving food, filling your iced tea, etc., to see if they are polite and doing a good job? The managers (and the owners) have no idea, on average, how each waiter is doing and treating the customers.
Really?

Surely, they have an idea of the number of customer complaints, improperly taken orders, conflicts with other employees, etc. of their employees.
Agree with Chuckanut on this. That is the definition of the word 'manager'.

Does the manager monitor the tips to monitor performance? Or just let it follow that the tips will select good staff and motivate them?

I'd bet some lazy types would be OK with doing sub par work and getting occasional 10% tips instead of occasional 20% tips (I think most people just go with 15% regardless of the service, unless it was out of the ordinary one way or the other).

As manager at Mega-Corp, I was expected to know how my employees were performing and interacting with others, even though I spent 80% of my day in stupid-%#^&^%@((&^%@&^%@&^%^@% meetings!

It can, and should be done.


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Old 02-24-2015, 01:34 PM   #116
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The problem is that tipping is not voluntary.
It certainly is. Tips are, by convention and now by US govt guidance, entirely voluntary and entirely at the discretion of the "tipper".

If a "tip" is part of the bill (e.g. at Big Hitter's golf club, or at restaurants that automatically add a mandatory 15% "gratuity" for parties of 6 or more), then it's not a tip at all, according to the US government. (see more at this site)

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Rev. Rul. 2012-18 reclassifies automatic gratuities as non-tip wages, or service charge income, taxable as regular wages. It defines tips as something given without compulsion and with an unrestricted right to determine the amount, which excludes automatic gratuities.
On another note: I wonder if tipping is one reason fast food is so popular in the US compared to many other countries, relative to sit-down restaurants? I doubt it's a huge factor, but it probably plays into things a bit. Apparently many customers are uncomfortable with the whole idea of tipping. That--plus "the price on the menu is what you'll pay" factor, may influence some people to go to a fast food spot rather than being served. Maybe there's a market niche for a moderately-priced sit down restaurant with a well-publicized "no tipping, please" policy. I'd go there.
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Old 02-24-2015, 02:00 PM   #117
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It certainly is. Tips are, by convention and now by US govt guidance, entirely voluntary and entirely at the discretion of the "tipper".
The word that fits here is "hegemony."

Could you behave like the above mentioned movie star and not allow a Tip be given at a table in a fancy restaurant (any definition of "fancy" will do)... even a single time to prove you could do it? I suspect the cultural pressures would be much to great.
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Old 02-24-2015, 06:37 PM   #118
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The word that fits here is "hegemony."

Could you behave like the above mentioned movie star and not allow a Tip be given at a table in a fancy restaurant (any definition of "fancy" will do)... even a single time to prove you could do it? I suspect the cultural pressures would be much to great.
Maybe so, but the proffered solution was to make tipping against the law. That is, in plain terms, to take away my freedom (jail) or take away the results of hours of my labor (a fine) if I voluntarily decide to give a person a tip. That's a far heavier "club" than the scowls of fellow diners or the howls of protest from a "shorted" waiter. If people get bullied into things they judge to be inappropriate due to social pressure--they need to examine their priorities (see my sig block!).

Tipping is "customary," not mandatory. I'm sure most of us have left little or nothing in the case of very rude service (don't want to leave nothing--they might think you just forgot).

Given the rules of the game, I tip. On a small tab at a diner with good, attentive service, it's often well over 25%. If there's a "mandatory gratuity" of 15%, then I will never pay a cent more than that--if I'm paying cash, I'll wait for exact change back.
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Old 02-24-2015, 09:15 PM   #119
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Maybe so, but the proffered solution was to make tipping against the law. That is, in plain terms, to take away my freedom (jail) or take away the results of hours of my labor (a fine) if I voluntarily decide to give a person a tip. That's a far heavier "club" than the scowls of fellow diners or the howls of protest from a "shorted" waiter. If people get bullied into things they judge to be inappropriate due to social pressure--they need to examine their priorities (see my sig block!).

Tipping is "customary," not mandatory. I'm sure most of us have left little or nothing in the case of very rude service (don't want to leave nothing--they might think you just forgot).

Given the rules of the game, I tip. On a small tab at a diner with good, attentive service, it's often well over 25%. If there's a "mandatory gratuity" of 15%, then I will never pay a cent more than that--if I'm paying cash, I'll wait for exact change back.

Yep, if they give bad service you need to leave something to show it...

This was a long time ago... but we were eating lunch and the waiter spilled a glass of water on my boss... waiter said very little and mgmt did nothing... his tip was $1... but he put it in a glass of water and turned it upside down on the table...

The worst I have done was walk on a check... we told the waitress 3 times to get our bill... she kept serving her other tables and ignored us... so we got up and walk toward the door and waited... she came walking by and we asked a 4th time for our bill... she looked at us and walked away... we thought she was getting our bill, but no... she brought out someone else food... see ya.....
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Old 02-25-2015, 07:36 AM   #120
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Yep, if they give bad service you need to leave something to show it...

This was a long time ago... but we were eating lunch and the waiter spilled a glass of water on my boss... waiter said very little and mgmt did nothing... his tip was $1... but he put it in a glass of water and turned it upside down on the table...
good one!
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