Comments about ‘Letters: Leaving a tip’

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Published: Wednesday, Sept. 11 2013 12:00 a.m. MDT

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Salt Lake City, UT

Tipping is a scam devised by restaurateurs and the like as a means of getting out of having to pay their own people a fair wage.

Kearns, UT

If you can't afford the 15% to 20% tip, you shouldn't be eating out. The people who constantly complain about poor service should also taking a long, truthful review of what they do that attracts the disappointing service.

Mike Richards
South Jordan, Utah

If a person works for a restaurant, he should be paid a fair wage for his/her services. If the customer thinks that extra effort has been given, then that customer should leave a tip.

The minimum wage law should apply to everyone. Of course paying minimum wage to all workers would make it cost more to go to a restaurant. The prices would have to rise to pay the wages, but tips would be optional, so prices could rise by 15% to 20% without changing the actual cost of the meal.

Until that changes, we will leave a generous tip for good service because we know that the entire staff depends on those tips. We've had several children who worked in restaurants who told us how discouraging it is to work eight hours and get only $10 in tips for those ten hours.


That may be the case, but yet those folks still earn $2/hour. If you don't want to pay a tip, don't eat at places that have servers, eat somewhere you server yourself, its that simple.

LDS Liberal
Farmington, UT

How about we "tip" CEOs for good serve and stiff them for bad?

I get upset when a CEO runs a company into the ground,
yet STILL gets a $50 million golden parachute for ruining the company.

Thinkin\' Man
Rexburg, ID

Let's make tipping completely optional for exceptional service, and change laws in favor of fair wages. Tipping should NOT be routine or expected, it should ONLY be for service above and beyond.

Happy Valley Heretic
Orem, UT

Record this moment.
I completely agree with Mike Richards.

2 bits
Cottonwood Heights, UT

What happened to minimum wage?

What respectable employer would pay a valued employee $2.00/hour in this day and age? Or expect their customers to pay their employees for them?

I agree that tips should be a way for customers to show their appreciation for exemplary service... not an expectation regardless of service.

I follow the tipping rules, but IMO America should be more like Europe on pay (living wage) and tipping (not expected).

Salt Lake City, UT

re: Mike Richards

Complaining about the Free Market? Interesting. Surely, your progeny knew what they were getting into. Something similar to Caveat Emptor applies.

That said, I divide the total bill by 6 (approx 16%) & work my way up.

re: LDS Liberal

I read a story recently where 40% of CEO'sS were awful in terms of performance, etc... Any wagers on most of these being the too big to fails/Wall St?

Sandy, UT

I have seldom left more than a 10% tip. I'm going with "Thinkin\' Man" on this one. Restaurants should not hide the cost of meals through "expected" behavior. Should we leave a tip for the cashier in the grocery store? Reams used to say "we add only 10% to these prices" but people started seeing through the ramifications of "only 10%". Imagine if a restaurant said "we add only 18% to these prices". They would be run out of town.

The Real Maverick
Orem, UT

"I have seldom left more than a 10% tip. I'm going with "Thinkin\' Man" on this one. Restaurants should not hide the cost of meals through "expected" behavior."

You're not hurting the restaurant here. By going out to eat, paying for your meal, and then stiffing your server you are ONLY hurting the server. The restaurant got your money, and that's all they care about. You're not forcing any changes to our tipping system. All you're doing is being a cheapskate and hurting some college student.

I have some advice: What would you do if this server was your child?

"Should we leave a tip for the cashier in the grocery store?"

Servers don't do more than a Reams cashier? Are Reams cashiers paid $2.13 per hr?

"Imagine if a restaurant said "we add only 18% to these prices". They would be run out of town."

I have worked at several busy restaurants that added an 18 percent gratuity to tables of 6+. I never had a problem with people refusing to pay this or not coming back. I guess only selfish people would see an 18 percent auto-gratuity as some sort of "injustice" or "gouging."

Smart Cookie
Kissimmee, FL

Let us get the tipped; employees don’t make minimum wage fallacy out of the way. All tipped position make at least minimum wage. They make 2.13 per hour plus tips. If the amount they make in tips + their hourly wage of 2.13 per hour does not add up to the federal minimum wage the restaurant is required to make up the difference. If the restaurant is not making up the difference the wait staff should contact the appropriate governmental regulatory agency, or an employment lawyer. I normally tip 20% or more however if I get awful service I will make that less. I know the wait staff will at least get minimum wage.

I always pay the tip by credit card. If you pay tips with cash, odds are the amount tipped will go underreported for tax purposes. Which means even the wait staff makes the same as someone else who doesn’t get tips, the take home pay could be much higher.

The Real Maverick
Orem, UT

"Tipping is a scam devised by restaurateurs and the like as a means of getting out of having to pay their own people a fair wage."

You're correct.

So are you now suggesting that the free market doesn't necessarily resolve to make things better for the worker? That *gasp* government intervention might be needed to make up for the shortcomings and injustices of the free market?

Wow! What a crazy day! The free market folks today are agreeing that the free market has failed in the restaurant agency and that government intervention is necessary! It's probably because they've actually had children work in this sector!

Now if only we could have a few of these folks denied health insurance because of pre-existing conditions and they'd suddenly become huge supporters of Obamacare!

Clearfield, UT

Should we feel as good about providing tax funded social services for underpaid Wal-Mart workers as we feel about tipping underpaid restaurant employees?
Seems like the CEO's do pretty well for themselves in both of these situations at our expense. That, lost in DC, is why it's relevant.

george of the jungle
goshen, UT

I sympathize with the writer, Compassion is all they want Show it with some gratuity.

2 bits
Cottonwood Heights, UT

How did the topic swing to CEO bashing and Free Market bashing? Must EVERY topic come back to this?

Brigham City, UT

From the letter: "Waiters and waitresses cannot make a living off 10 percent tips."

People can't make a living off the minimum wage, either, and yet critics of a raise maintain that the minimum wage is already high enough, or that there shouldn't be a minimum wage at all, but that an employer should be allowed to pay as little as he thinks the job is worth - and if you want higher pay, find another job.

Suppose a waitress serves four tables an hour, that every table has a $20 bill, and that she receives a 10% ($2) tip from each. Added to her wages, that would make $10.13 an hour, almost $3 more than the minimum wage.

If, according to the critics, the present minimum wage is high enough for workers at a fast-food restaurant, jobs requiring no special skill, why isn't $10 or $12 dollars an hour adequate pay for waitresses, another job requiring no special skill?

And if people agree that $10 an hour is too little for a waitress, why do those same people think that $7.25 an hour is enough, or more than enough, for a fast-food worker?

one old man
Ogden, UT

If I remember correctly, when my daughters were in college and working as servers, the IRS taxed them for 15% of the total of the sales tickets with their server number on them. Thus, servers were being taxed for 15% whether or not their customers left a tip.

Is that still the case?

2 bits
Cottonwood Heights, UT

I can't remember the last time I got a tip just for doing my job. But then my employer pays me what my job is worth (to him).

Why don't restaurant owners just pay their people what he thinks their work is worth (to him)? I mean without THEM... he doesn't make very much money.

Seems like he should factor their wages into the price of the food and just pay his employees.

To me it makes no sense for the employer to expect his customers to pay his employees salary.

The only angle I can find where it makes sense is IF the restaurant owner sees the waitresses as freelancers working for the the customer (and not for him). Then it would make sense for the customer to determine what the waitress gets paid, because they work for him (not the restaurant). But that's kind of a stretch.

IMO they should include the full wage into the price of the meal and pay the waitress from proceeds.

Some waitresses prefer tips instead of salary because they can earn more IF they serve a lot of tables and work hard.

GK Willington
Salt Lake City, UT

to 2 bits 11:16 a.m. Sept. 11

"How did the topic swing to CEO bashing and Free Market bashing? Must EVERY topic come back to this?"

You forgot Option 3... Mendenhall or Whittingham (depending on allegiance) is the devil incarnate.

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