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Thu Jul 11, 2019, 11:23 AM

Have we had a good knockdown drag-out about restaurant tipping lately?

Here's a cute one from a restaurant near me. I took this photo, because it was a jaw-dropper for me.

On the left is the "merchant copy" receipt for the customer to sign. On the right is the detailed bill:



Some additional facts to chew on:

This was a party of two, and there is no sign, note in the menu, or any other notice of the automatic service charge. Also, these sorts of charges are extremely unusual in restaurants in my area.

What I love about the merchant-copy is that it calculates the tip based on the total amount - including the already-added service charge.

Normally, I tip 20%, but if someone charges me 15% without even telling me about it up front, that's all they get. But deceptively throwing in check boxes for up to 20% on top of 15% is pretty ballsy.

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Arrow 22 replies Author Time Post
Reply Have we had a good knockdown drag-out about restaurant tipping lately? (Original post)
jberryhill Jul 11 OP
maxsolomon Jul 11 #1
PoliticAverse Jul 11 #2
jberryhill Jul 11 #3
PoliticAverse Jul 11 #10
Sneederbunk Jul 11 #5
jberryhill Jul 11 #13
Shrike47 Jul 11 #4
jberryhill Jul 11 #6
PoindexterOglethorpe Jul 11 #7
spanone Jul 11 #8
Bettie Jul 11 #9
gopiscrap Jul 11 #11
miyazaki Jul 11 #12
jberryhill Jul 11 #14
miyazaki Jul 11 #15
jberryhill Jul 11 #16
demmiblue Jul 11 #17
miyazaki Jul 11 #18
jberryhill Jul 11 #19
Ms. Toad Jul 11 #20
customerserviceguy Jul 11 #21
GeorgeGist Jul 11 #22

Response to jberryhill (Original post)

Thu Jul 11, 2019, 11:31 AM

1. IDK where you are, but the bills in Seattle are pretty transparent.

it will say "additional tip" instead of "tip" if there's a service charge - which is typically 18%.

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Response to jberryhill (Original post)

Thu Jul 11, 2019, 11:31 AM

2. What state ? n/t

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Response to PoliticAverse (Reply #2)

Thu Jul 11, 2019, 11:33 AM

3. Delaware

Oddly, the Delaware labor rules on this - in terms of who is presumed entitled to the money - differ from the recent IRS rules on how these are treated (in terms of how it is taxed).

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Response to jberryhill (Reply #3)

Thu Jul 11, 2019, 11:44 AM

10. In New York there was a big 2008 ruling that a "service charge" counted as tips

and had to be given to employees.

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Response to PoliticAverse (Reply #2)

Thu Jul 11, 2019, 11:34 AM

5. A state without tax.

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Response to Sneederbunk (Reply #5)

Thu Jul 11, 2019, 12:06 PM

13. There is no sales tax, correct


The income tax and property tax tend to be a little higher.

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Response to jberryhill (Original post)

Thu Jul 11, 2019, 11:33 AM

4. Did you ask what the 15% service charge is meant to cover? I want to know.

Although I am an enthusiastic tipper, I have a very negative reaction to this approach.

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Response to Shrike47 (Reply #4)

Thu Jul 11, 2019, 11:35 AM

6. No

I'm simply sending it off to the state labor department to suggest they have a look-see, since I have a pretty good idea who's getting the money, and there are some relevant regulations.

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Response to jberryhill (Original post)

Thu Jul 11, 2019, 11:39 AM

7. Lately I've noticed that almost every check I get at a restaurant

has that nifty little suggested tip thing. I really don't like it. What I do like is to tip well.

It may be that we are moving in the direction of much of Europe where the service charge is automatically figured and no additional is expected.

However, even when I'm paying with a credit card I prefer to tip in cash. That way I know for sure the server gets it. I've heard too many stories of restaurants withholding the tip from the server if it's paid with a card.

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Response to jberryhill (Original post)

Thu Jul 11, 2019, 11:42 AM

8. what constitutes a 'service charge'?

never seen that on a restaurant bill before?

sounds like the tip to me?

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Response to jberryhill (Original post)

Thu Jul 11, 2019, 11:42 AM

9. If they've already added in a service charge

I'd be asking if that is a tip for the server or, if not, what it is.

If it isn't for the server, I'd stop going to that place and hand the server a cash tip personally.

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Response to jberryhill (Original post)

Thu Jul 11, 2019, 11:56 AM

11. should be 15% when service iis standard

18% when good and 20% when very good and sometimes if it is outstanding I will tip 25%

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Response to gopiscrap (Reply #11)

Thu Jul 11, 2019, 12:00 PM

12. Plenty of peeps complaining on Yelp about this place,

being forced to pay the 15 percent even when the service is substandard.

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Response to miyazaki (Reply #12)

Thu Jul 11, 2019, 12:08 PM

14. I was aware of it going in from the Yelp reviews, but...

I'm curious as to how you identified the place.

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Response to jberryhill (Reply #14)

Thu Jul 11, 2019, 12:13 PM

15. My uncle owns the place.

-just kidding

Was the state, the Chinese Kanji, the lamb entree and it's price.

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Response to miyazaki (Reply #15)

Thu Jul 11, 2019, 12:15 PM

16. ah

Google reverse image search was my guess.

The lamb was pretty good. The ma-po tofu was on the better side of okay.

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Response to jberryhill (Reply #16)

Thu Jul 11, 2019, 12:20 PM

17. View image info, cut/paste and do a simple Google search is how I got it. n/t

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Response to jberryhill (Reply #16)

Thu Jul 11, 2019, 12:21 PM

18. Ah. Well if you forget where you live, just ask me.



kidding again.

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Response to miyazaki (Reply #18)

Thu Jul 11, 2019, 12:21 PM

19. My wife put a tag in all of my shirts with my name and address

So, I'm good.

Apparently, I'm Ralph Lauren and I was made in Thailand.

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Response to jberryhill (Original post)

Thu Jul 11, 2019, 12:53 PM

20. If it wasn't posted somplace so I had notice before I incurred the expense

I'd refuse to pay it (and hand the servers a cash tip).

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Response to jberryhill (Original post)

Thu Jul 11, 2019, 01:26 PM

21. What I notice

is that the tip suggestion is based on the amount charged AFTER the bogus service charge.

No way in hell I'd ever give another dollar of my money to a business run like that, no matter how good their food was.

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Response to jberryhill (Original post)

Thu Jul 11, 2019, 01:33 PM

22. Greed is a helluva disease.

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