Do you tip?

We had lunch in that London yesterday, and it was very good.  Apart from the waitress being a little surly, and taking our meal to the wrong table.

When the bill came it had a £7.80 service charge included.  I asked the waitress to take it off and she said she would have to ask her manager.  She duly came back with a fresh bill, and asked if what was my  problem with the service.  I explained that I often leave a tip, but I didn't like the way they'd added it to my bill without asking. 

If someone goes out of their way to make you feel welcome and enjoy your meal, then they deserve a tip, but for restaurants to add it on is just a racket surely?

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Comments

  • Yep, it's a racket and very little of that money will go to the waitress. It's always best to leave cash as a tip, then it's up to the waiting staff whether or not they share with other folk in the restaurant.

    I tip a lot; hairdressers, cabbies, waiting staff. I've waited tables and really appreciated tips.
  • I only tip if the service is good - never if they ask for it or include it on the bill.
  • Tips in cash I do having worked in bars for years through college & uni. Never worked anywhere that they add the charge to your bill but dont like that as heard too many stories of the company keeping 50% etc.
  • NessieNessie ✭✭✭

    Strictly speaking, if it's added to the bill, or if the company collects all the tips and shares them out amongst the staff, the company has to treat it as income and include it in their profits (and so pay tax on it).  A lot of companies then use this to subsidise their wage bill, so in effect none of it goes to the waiting/kitchen staff as an extra.

    I tip in cash, and I'm quite happy if there's a sharing system whereby the other waiting staff/kitchen staff get a share.

  • You have to do an exceptional job for me to tip, and i've worked in bars and been a waitress so i know what it's like.
    I always take off the extra on the bill. I don't see why people expect to get it just because they work in certain industries and i certainly won't tip surly staff no way no how, however if i get brilliant service then i'll often go above 10%, not loads but you know if people have made my experience better then i'm happy to show my appreciation.

    Grinds my gears when it's expected and I'll quite happily tell managers/staff themselves why i'm not including a tip.

  • I've never quite understood the concept of automatic tipping. It often gets said that you should always tip hotel/restaurant staff because they are low paid - Which no doubt they are.
    But they're are plenty of other low paid jobs when the default isn't to tip, so I'm not too sure what makes them special, or the other people not worthy.

    /edit too late. JWrun beat me too it!
  • ChimneyChimney ✭✭✭
    If it's included and I've had good service I pay the bill on card and leave the tip in cash. If it's included and the service is standard or worse then it gets taken off and I say why. I did have a restaurant in London try to stop me from leaving because I had paid the bill short. They even threatened to call the police. I suggested they do just that and I'll sue them for false imprisonment. Strangely enough they let me go at that point!
    If reality matched intention I'd know I was dreaming
  • Generally I do tip.  I don't like the auto tip thing though for the same reasons everyone has said.  If I'm paying by card, I ask the waiting staff if they get it and if they don't, I don't add it to the card.

    I don't quite understand the 10% thing either.  I usually go for that but what if you had an expensive bottle of wine, rather than house.  Is there any more service involved in opening that and serving it than there is a bottle of water?  

    I went to a bar in central London once that added a service to charge to drinks at the bar!  That was taking the piss.

  • I don't tip as a rule, however if I am paying cash then I will often round it up to the nearest pound, or maybe the nearest fiver because once I have decided that I want to go then I don't want to hang around waiting to pay.

    But I will tip good service or if the waitress was particualrly friendly.

    I used to work in a cafe and all the tips were put in a pot and divided up at Christmas based on the number of hours you had worked.  The most I got was £25, so hardly worth it.  I resented that as I worked hard and was the one that most of the tips were given to, but I had to share it with the slackers.

  • I always tip but I hate cover charges and service charges.

    In Russia and Brazil they frequently scrawl "+10%" on the bottom of the bill to chisel a few roubles more out of Johnny Westerner in the hope he's on exes and won't mind paying.

    A colleague I was with kicked off every time they did...image

  • Actually i don't always tip - if the service is rubbish I wouldn't leave a cent.
  • I love how we tip in this country - but only because I have spent so much time in the US and I get very very annoyed about how it works over there.

    Just pay people a decent wage you a**holes.
  • SC - you've just described the fundamental problem with the communist system...image
  • Mr PuffyMr Puffy ✭✭✭

    We were in Greece last week, and I tipped my head off, all the waiters said that the tips were shared out among everyone, including the Chefs so I was happy to do it.

    And we usually leave a tip for the cleaner in the room if we've been messy.

  • I always leave the same tip...Red Rum...3.30 Aintreeimage
  • It's 20% now in the US FFS

  • I always tip in restaurants (unless the service is really bad) around 10% but when I am occasionally on expenses from work then I tend to become a lot more generous than normal!

    The one thing about tipping that drives me insane though, is when you arrive at a hotel and someone insists on carrying your bag for you whether you want them to or not and then expects a tip. Or worse still they show you around your room and expect a tip – “Yes, I know how to open curtains and turn on the TV, and the room is not that big I'm sure I'll find everything in it soon enough."

  • I'll tip if I'm happy with the service and will normally round it up to the next whole £10, then do a quick calculation of the percentage and if its a bit on the low side chuck another couple of quid down.  If however the service has been poor then I pay to the penny and I mean the penny.

    20% in America now???  Blimey, better take some more money with me.

  • Stevie  GStevie G ✭✭✭

    20% tip in america? You have to do that? What if you don't?

    I see you lot are obviously all plush with cash! Going out to the type of fancy places where a tip is expected! The types of places I'd go for a drink or food certainly would look odd tipping!

    I had the annoyance once of being in a group of people at some restaurant, we all covered the birthday girl's fee which was fair enough.

    Then when one girl decided that we'd divide the bill equally (despite them eating like horses, and having booze and me eating lightly), AND then round the amount up to give a generous tip.

    Well that was beyond too much image

  • SlugstaSlugsta ✭✭✭

    I also tip only if I have received particularly good service. It might be more or less than 10%, depending on how much we have spent and how much work we caused.

    I have never tipped a 'chambermaid' and don't see why that is expected, we don't do anything that would require them to go the extra mile.

    Cabbies I will tip if they have done something extra like carrying my luggage to the front door. Mind you, the situation, in our home town at least, is a bit different cos Mr S is a cabbie - so the cabbie is intent on knocking a bit off the bill for us and we are intent on given a tip image.

    The situation in the USa is farcical - 20% if you get good service and 105 if the service was bad! No way - it is 0% if the service was bad  image

  • The thing with the US though ( as my american relatives keep saying to me) is that the folks doing these jobs are extremely poorly paid and in some case NOT paid at all - so that the tips are really what they live on.

    That's why I said before - the a**holes need to sort themselves out and pay their staff a decent wage.

  • If it's added on automatically then it defeats the object of a tip. I agree with GA - pay people a decent wage and then tips can be given as their intended purpose (i.e. the acknowledgement that someone has gone beyond what is expected in their role), and not a necessity to supplement crap wages.

    The one that gets me is hairdressers. I already get charged extra because I have long hair, and it seems now that you can't just get it cut - there have to be all sorts of extras, all at a cost. I can't afford to go often, let alone tip... plus there are places I have to avoid now because I'm fed up of the staff trying to sell me 'treatments' and expensive products, because high street stuff is 'proven' to be really bad for the hair. I'm covered in tattoos - even if I believed them, hair is temporary so I really don't care!

  • My bugbear is that service tends to be worse in places that automatically at 10% or whatever to the bill because there's no incentive to give good service. I will refuse to pay it if it's been really bad, but mostly will.

    I was a waitress in a large chain for a long while. Our total tip box generally came to about 5% of the evenings takings.

  • when i go to the barbers i usually tip an extra quid, for a £10 haircut

    occasionally round a cabfare up to the nearest quid.

    don't really agree with it in restaurants but would always leave a cash tip so it goes into the tronc

  • Mr PuffyMr Puffy ✭✭✭
    I don't tip the barber, precisely because he does charge a tenner.  The girls down the market, who charge £3.80 for a number 2 all over get the tip.
  • Stevie  GStevie G ✭✭✭
    Surely tipping a quid is just embarrasment all round?! For them because they have to be grateful, and you for offering such a low tip!
  • 10% tip? what more do you want!

    i usually do my hair myself but go to the barbers ahead of job interviews and weddings
  • Mr PuffyMr Puffy ✭✭✭
    *unemployed polygamist seeks new barber*
  • Last time we were in USA we tipped the hotel staff. We then found out when we paid the bill at the end of our stay that tips were added on to your bill so you were not expected to tip any of their staff at all. We were not happy when we discovered that we had tipped twice!
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