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Friday, April 10, 2009

What is your criterion in tipping?

    It is sometimes very difficult to decide how much to leave when I am dining out. Sometimes I ask why I can’t just leave what I feel the service was worth. After all I came to the restaurant to pay for someone else to cook for me. I agreed to pay for the price for the food, but why should I pay for the service? Isn't that part of the cost of the package? Can't I just go in the kitchen pick up counter and get my own food after it's cooked?

    There is basically two rules which I use to decide whether or not to leave a tip and how much. This was decide after much thinking and I think it is a good method which anyone can use. I will leave a tip for table service that is friendly and I can see that the waiter and waitress have been doing their job really well. If they did a really great job and went over and above the service I expected, then I will definitely give them a great tip that is over and above what they expected.

    The other kind of waiters and waitresses that I really detest are the ones that feel like I owe them a tip despite the fact that they took my meal order with a bad attitude, saw that my food was ready at the kitchen's pick-up counter and continued to talk to their co-workers and then disappear for hours when I need a utensil or a condiment at my table, I will give them very little tip and a piece of my mind in this case. Maybe a talk with the manager will be in order. In such cases, I have noticed that after the complaint, either the offending waiter/waitress has improved their service or sent to some other area. But in the worst case, the service remains the same and I tend to avoid the place.

    But do keep in mind that tipping is extremely important because usually waiter and waitresses only make there money on tips and at times get no regular or very little salary. Most restaurant waiter/waitress are paid less than the standard minimum wage as it is customary that the other part of their income is supplement by tips. So for that reason alone they do expect and should get a tip for minimal service. You will find the occasional person that has an attitude and just should be left a smaller tip.

    Finally, when I go to some place to eat, I expect good service. I don't expect perfection but I do expect to be treated decently, fairly and given prompt service by the staff. I like my food and service to be good. If it is not up to the mark, then I send the food back or tell them about it when they ask if everything was o.k. I don't mind telling them that it was not up to the mark as I am not shy about it when I encounter sloppy service. I guess the best method to completely avoid the tipping system, depending if the place allows it is to use carry out service or go to a drive-thru.