Another Reason to Abandon the Tipping System: Young People are Bad Tippers

Categories: Food News

Waiter Flickr.jpg
Zoetnet
This guy's got another reason to be fed up with tipping.
The advent of using tips to compensate front-end employees at restaurants has come under a lot of fire recently, as it has been proven to be unfair and inefficient. For one, customers rarely tip based on the quality of service they receive, using a default tip amount based on their own perceptions more often than not, and bigger tippers seldom get better service. Not to mention some racial groups are stereotyped as bad tippers, potentially hurting their service before their water glasses land.

Now a new Harris poll further questions the system's future viability: Young diners, it turns out, tip like shit.

See Also: Maybe We Should Quit Tipping Our Front-End Staff Altogether

The survey asked 2,000 participants about their tipping habits, and found that 30 percent of Americans aged 18-34 most often tip less than 15 percent when they consider their service to be good. The national average is an 18 percent gratuity for good service, and older people stiff the wait staff far less often.

Maybe it's cultural, and maybe it's financial: High student loan balances and high rates of unemployment have weighed significantly on the finances of millennials, and now there's evidence that the pressure could affect wait staff compensation.

The poll found some regional differences as well, with southerners tipping less than their Yankee counterparts, on average. So, if you've been thinking you consistently get lethargic service when you dine out and you recently graduated from Alabama, your paranoia just may be founded.

Of course, there's a solution to all this: abandoning the tipping systems in favor of a compensation system that's more in line with other vocations. Europeans, who started the whole tipping system, have abandoned it in favor of paying wait staff a living wage.


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109 comments
BoyHell
BoyHell

American business is addicted to non-living wages and slave labor.

Business owners feel entitled to have the cheapest most exploited labor in the western hemisphere and it's all by design. 

marcy
marcy

I just had a nice person ring up a cart load of groceries for me, should I be tipping 20% or 18%?


Then I went down to the mall and had a lady show me 12 different pairs of shoes and I finally selected a nice pair of pumps.  I forget, is that a 15% tip or 25% tip?


Thanks for bringing me the food I paid for, now I'm not giving you $10 for walking my plate over to me.  Thanks for pouring that $45 glass of wine, no I'm not paying you $9 for uncorking a bottle and pouring a glass.  Get a medical degree and become a brain surgeon if you want to get paid a lot of money for a few minutes of work.

marcy
marcy

You say "bad tippers", I say they have no interest in tipping.  That's bad for servers but good for the future.  Tipping is a nutty combination of some people trying to feel better about themselves by giving someone a handout and people thinking they should be compensated for filling water glasses and bringing a plate of food to the table by the people doing the eating.


The best thing that could happen would be for more people to just say no to tipping.  Not just be "bad tippers", don't tip at all.

buff1999
buff1999

Get rid of the tipping system altogether. Restaurants should pay the wait staff a higher wage, and increase menu prices on everything by 20% and just do away with the whole silly custom.

lovely778
lovely778

I loved being a waitress back in day.  It's almost a sport especially when you get busy.  I also remember the days when I had to bus my own tables and scrap up the pennies that table would leave as a tip.  Now, older I realize we all have to eat and not all of us can cook.  Therefore, we have to go out and eat.  To be young, and wanting good food but not wanting to add and additional 15 to 20% amount to the tab is hard.  So, maybe just appreciating what can be given as a token of their appreciation, as long as its not pennies, and its something meaningful it should be considered okay...remember tip stands for "to improve performance" so next time remember that.

daisynwilliams
daisynwilliams

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whateveryousay
whateveryousay topcommenter

I've got a great tip for everybody.  Don't be a waiter or waitress.  It will kill your soul.

teknik
teknik topcommenter

tipping is a great system, never treat anyone like they'll tip bad and big tips do yield better service especially when dealing with regulars.


It all balances out and I don't think wait staff would ever be paid well by the restaurant.  


I walked with %25-30 every night and was one of the best tipped servers in the bar I stayed at for a decade .. and I'm not a girl..

Montemalone
Montemalone topcommenter

These comments are hilarious, as per usual.

A story about the self-important whiner-baby facespace generation being too cheap to tip even though they feel entitled to go out and have someone serve them and a bunch of comments blaming this on Obama.

Of course, everybody thinks they deserve every penny on their paychecks, and should be getting 3 times more, and shouldn't have to pay all those fucking taxes, and why doesn't the government fix everything. 

This, of course, leads to more people drinking, and the circle of life continues.

DMacaoidhSelim
DMacaoidhSelim

So it basic courtesy gone, or what? People should be embarrassed to tip badly, but no. More and more often, people are actually PROUD of it, like they are "so good with money in these uncertain times" or something. Has anyone seen any pics of customers brazenly writing "0" on the bill with some kind of weird explanation as to why, like they're taking a stand against injustice? BIZARRE.

ROFLCopter
ROFLCopter

Will the crying of the generation me that voted for Obama and now totally regrets the decision ever stop?

TheCredibleHulk
TheCredibleHulk topcommenter

Waiters love it when you say this: "You want a good tip? Plant your corn early."

paulpsycho78
paulpsycho78

no the bad tippers are those who live in 600k+ houses drive porsches and hummers the wives have fake tits, live in nannies, and drinking/pill problems...The husbands have beer bellies, cocaine habits, & like to push sports on their kids until the kids go into rehab at age 18.  No wonder they have no money left over for tipping.

jackya501
jackya501

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Leshabs77
Leshabs77

In regards to them paying Service Industry people more in Europe and therefore no one tips; have you ever eaten at a restaurant in Europe? The vast majority of time the service sucks in Europe. So, while I think it stinks that restaurants pay wait staff / bartenders $2.35, maybe the tipping system does lead to better service. 

Sotiredofitall
Sotiredofitall topcommenter

The tip comes at the end of the meal  bad service = bad tip  good service = good tip   Not that complicated   Good waiters and waitresses earn it.

halldecker
halldecker

I had a version of this discussion last night with the manager of one of the best-rated (and most successful) all kinds of food Dallas restaurant.


"You wouldn't believe what customers want.  Some will do anything for a free meal,  or at least a free dessert.  One woman insisted she wanted lemon juice in her custard.  I told her,  it'll make the custard inedible,  it'll become lumps."  "I don't care,  that's how I want it."  Refused to eat it,  refused to pay for it,  "Chef didn't make it the right way,  my friend makes it all the time,  it's perfect."


New website in Australia,  available only to restaurants,  rates diners ... they can check it when somebody calls for a reservation,  their history at other places,  tips,  etc.  That info probably determines whether there's space available.


Kinda like the things people do in chat rooms 'cause they're anonymous.  They spew things at waiters 'cause they're waiting on them.


Manager says he wishes everybody had to wait tables for a week,  they'd be a lot easier to deal with afterward.


ScottsMerkin
ScottsMerkin topcommenter

Young people tip worse these days?  Well they certainly give shittier service too, and feel entitled to a tip of at least 18%.  I was sitting at my local hole the other day and over heard a young (in the industry less than a year, early 20's) bartender from another bar talking about how she expects 20% no matter what and doesnt understand why people would tip any less.  THis certainly is not the only time Ive heard this either.  I asked her how she treated customers that tip less than that and return and she said she would not give them good service.  I said dont you think that is a vicious cycle that only hurts your income and her exact words were, why should I give good service to someone who isnt willing to tip me 20% knowing I make $2.35 an hour. 

bstewart1987
bstewart1987

Why is this waiter licking his lips as he walks towards me......

WatchingSouthDetroit
WatchingSouthDetroit

In other words, get rid of tipping because the lazy and entiltled want to give bad service and still make the same money.  I know when I get good or bad service and I tip accordingly.  I have no problem at all tipping 30% for great service.  I also have no problem going 10% (or less)  if it appears that the server went on vacation during my meal.

NO SOCIALISM WHEN EATING OUT - SURVIVAL OF THE FITTEST (OR BEST)!!!

whateveryousay
whateveryousay topcommenter

@DavidRoot You're kind of saying that black people don't tip...and that's pretty racist.  


marcy
marcy

@Montemalone

People with their hands out love to characterize people who don't give them a handout as being "cheap".  


Yes, I am absolutely entitled to go out to eat, be handed a menu with prices, order and pay.   I shouldn't have to dance a jib afterwards, wash your car or give the busboy a blow job.


Your employer should pay you.

marcy
marcy

@DMacaoidhSelim

People who want to feel better about themselves use tips to compensate.


Begging for handouts is idiotic.  Do your job, get paid by the hour or week and stop expecting someone to pay you extra for doing your job.


I don't tip the butcher, the baker or my candlestick maker either.  When I take a trip on a plane I don't tip the ticket agent, the baggage handler, the flight attendant and I don't slip 15% of my fare into the hand of the pilot after the flight either.



marcy
marcy

@Leshabs77

I eat out many times a week outside the United States, the country I'm currently in makes tips an optional and fixed portion of the bill.  8%


What is service like?  Unbelievably good.


Tipping leads to surly people who come to think of their handouts as an entitlement.

ghkyluhhje
ghkyluhhje

@Leshabs77  "...have you ever eaten at a restaurant in Europe? The vast majority of time the service sucks in Europe."


Glad you asked. I have. And the service was top notch. It's no coincidence that Europe is world class for its food service. Methinks you've never been to that continent.

marcy
marcy

@Sotiredofitall

Good waiters quickly learn that bad waiters get tips that are just as good

TheCredibleHulk
TheCredibleHulk topcommenter

@ColonelAngus

They are also extremely rude.

We've been letting them ride this "nice-guy" thing for far too long now.

marcy
marcy

@WatchingSouthDetroit

Big tippers want to feel good about themselves.


Service is the least important part of the meal.  


Yet we tip people who take an order, cart plates around and fill water glasses and not the people who actually make and plate the food.


idiotic

ghkyluhhje
ghkyluhhje

@WatchingSouthDetroit  "NO SOCIALISM WHEN EATING OUT..."


Besides the fact that all caps is the sign of a small brain and penis, there are three other basic flaws in your argument:


1. Private businesses charging money in place of tips isn't socialism, because if that were the case then...


2....because #1 above any case of charging anything for anything would socialism.


3. Regardless of your tipping behavior, research shows most patrons undertip, and how much is almost never related to the quality of the service.

DMacaoidhSelim
DMacaoidhSelim

@CitizenKane @paulpsycho78 The whole article is rife with it. I've never tipped any less than 20%, more if I got something really cheap, and I do NOT have money to speak of. There is no excuse for ripping off waiters (that's what I consider it to be, anyway). Who else is going to make sure they have enough money to live on? The US government? HA!

marcy
marcy

@paulpsycho78 @bvckvs

If you tip at least 25% you are wonderful person who should be admired and have sex with 70 virgins.


Not really, tipping is just about making you feel good about giving someone a handout.

marcy
marcy

@Sotiredofitall @bvckvs

You tip people so they think you are a really nice guy.


I look forward to robotic waiters, having someone pander to me for tips is so plantation.

Tipster1908
Tipster1908

@ghkyluhhje @Leshabs77 The service is what customers over there expect. It's just not what Americans (myself included) expect or are used to. In Europe the pace of dining is more leisurely. It's considered rude for the wait staff to quickly bring your check as if they expect you to vacate the table as soon as the last bite hits your belly. It's not a question of being good or bad at their jobs but at the cultural expectations.

marcy
marcy

@ghkyluhhje

If most people are doing something they aren't under-ing it.


The silliest part of % tipping is nobody is doing a lick more or less work because you had a $45 glass of wine vs a $25 glass of wine.


Take my order, bring my plate, fill my water glass.  That's worth about $3.

NakedTuna
NakedTuna

@ghkyluhhje "Under tip" according to what, exactly? Why is the "average" 18%? Who makes that decision? Maybe, in the patrons mind, 10% does equal good service. If you follow any social research, you will see perception is everything; it doesn't make it wrong.

marcy
marcy

@DMacaoidhSelim @CitizenKane @paulpsycho78

Wow.


How much do you tip the airline pilot who flies you around?


You are clearly another person who believes being a big tipper makes him look important in the eyes of people he tips.  Thank you massa for giving me a nice tip.


Sheesh

muhutdafuga
muhutdafuga topcommenter

@bvckvs @Sotiredofitall A superior attitude isn't about actual superiority, it's about delusions of grandeur.  I hope that correction helps you stop being such an ass.

ghkyluhhje
ghkyluhhje

@NakedTuna I'm not sure I follow. Please be sure to form a cogent argument next time.

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