OT - Do you tip at carry out places?

Submitted by Blue_Bull_Run on July 10th, 2010 at 6:24 PM

Some of the carry out places I frequent have tip jars, and the credit card receipt has a line to write in a tip. I always feel awkward when the guy at the register looks at my receipt and I didn't tip. But I don't see why I should be tipping - I walked my ass over to pick up my own food. Any work they did should be included in the price of my order, no?



July 12th, 2010 at 1:25 AM ^

First of all, I'm talking about tipping 20% and only taking off $1 when the tip exceeds $10, so the bill was >$50. If they only get 10 tables in a 3-table section over 8 hours, that sounds like a personal problem to me.

Second, I don't care how they have to split it out. That's part of the job and they accept it when they take on the work.

Third, almost $9/hour + $2/hour is about the max of what I feel they should be making.

Fourth, the 20% is a general purpose baseline. If the service is beyond horrible (mess up orders, forget about us, etc) I'll use 15% as the baseline. If we have a 8+ people or a special order, then I might jump to 25%.

Fifth, if their tips and hourly wage do not surpass the minimum wage ($7ish, whatever it is now), the employer is responsible for paying the difference so that the waitress makes minimum wage. So, even if they provide the worst service and no one tips them, they are making $7-8/hour until they get fired.


July 11th, 2010 at 12:52 AM ^

For anyone who doesn't like to tip, try overtipping by a dollar or two (or five, or ten, or twenty, depending on what kind of restaurant you are in and how much you normally spend) on a regular basis.  Get to know a person or two by name.  You might even want to talk a bit, offering a few personal details but not enough to make anyone think you want to get "too close."   You will soon get a reputation as a "great customer."  The old saw/acronym "To Insure Prompt Service" doesn't work as a single transaction; it works much better as a pattern.

You won't believe how much better you will be treated after the staff picks up on your generosity.  I have been on "both sides of the counter," and I can state with utter conviction that being treated like royalty and having the staff look forward to your visits is well worth the extra dollars you spend. 

Conversely, if you get a reputation as a PITA, don't even bother eating anything they make for you once they know you.  You don't want to know why.


July 11th, 2010 at 1:14 AM ^

Carry out is just like the bar: about 10%, but never less than a buck at a time.  It's an extra dollar or three to me, but it means a lot more to them.  


July 11th, 2010 at 2:51 AM ^

if any of you all have worked at a restaurant you know how to tip. Listen people its not based on min wage even if there carry out person gets min wage. theres more effort that goes into your carry out order then your order at the place of business. ill happily walk you through this if you need it. stop being stingy i up charge ppl where i work to cover the cost of carry out just because ppl like you all dont tip. Service in the dinning room is different if you have a problem then it can be fixed but, your interaction with a togo person is simple. a lot of peoples expecations are not able to be met. Tip min tip isnt  dollar its 20% not a $1. even if they suck theres a lot more work than you understand that goes into making ur night than just a dollar. and if you "get to know" someone everyone tries it be orig. grow a pair you went to michigan not ohio state act like it stop being cheep.


July 11th, 2010 at 2:55 AM ^

 stop being stingy i up charge ppl where i work to cover the cost of carry out just because ppl like you all dont tip.


what if someone is down on their luck and can barely afford the meal? you are gonna take more out of the shallow pocket? Just because YOU are not getting a tip?


July 11th, 2010 at 3:12 AM ^

if there doing TOGO at a 4 star place clearly they can afford it princess. How bout my boxes my togo person cost me more cause ppl like you dont tip so i upcharge to cover the cost boxes wax paper other contianers and my togo person they do more work then my servers but, you wouldnt know that. whats your point now? i dont need a food runner either or essay cause my servers work harder than you i bet and they go on to be awesome people i wont say who they are but, most of my servers make more then you i bet and work twice as hard which is most likely why you eat at outback i guess. you dont have one i win every fucking time this shit pisses me off my fucking servers get jacked by people like you becuase you all think you understand whats going on. I fly airplanes and own places to eat all sorts of places but, i don't ever try to act like i know everything. Let me guess your the person who can coach michigan to a nat'l title. ya jerk. why dont you stop being stingy.


July 11th, 2010 at 3:20 AM ^

so you feel your making a difference in the lives of you're co-workers. Do you want a cookie?

Every once in awhile people need to treat themselves to a "special" night. If they cant afford a tip, they shouldnt be penalized. You may work at a "4 Star" restaurant, but eventually the patrons will become aware and may stop coming. Then your argument is moot, you may want to consider this. If the other major chains are doing this, or are about to do this. I think they will be in for a rude awakening.

Just and FYI. Whenever I go to a sit down style restaurant, i sit down. If my service is above par and my drink is always full. Then the server gets 15 to 20 percent, if the service is poor they get paird accordingly. So i would recommend you do not stereotype a man you don't even know. As it may reveal some ignorance in you.


July 11th, 2010 at 3:24 AM ^

i dont work i own and you most likely get poor service because of that your food might come out right but your service might suck. how bout you cook for yourself i can tell you how to make what ever dish you'd enjoy. Im just informing you step into a city that has good high class places to eat where people go a lot they dont tip 20%.


July 11th, 2010 at 3:28 AM ^

...but if you are "down on  your luck" and can "barely afford the meal"...then what the hell are you doing eating out? Yes I know it's a nice thing to do every once in a while..but if you are down on your luck that much...maybe you should stay home and get your finances in order before going out to eat. If you can't tip, you shouldn't be eating out. B/c some people depend on your tips to care for their family.

There is nothing worse than getting stiffed on an incredibly large bill (especially if the service was flawless, and unfortunately it happens more than you think)...b/c in reality..the server ends up having to pay for you to eat there. If your bill is $100+ then that is an extra dollar the server has to tip out to the busser, food runner, and bartender. Incredibly frustrating.


July 11th, 2010 at 3:10 AM ^

Tipping is actually 15%...but we like to tip 20% for people we like and that don't "up charge" us. Though if you have the authority for that where you work, why don't you just pay them more? Because otherwise I think you're commuting fraud... And stop screwing up your carry out services so often and maybe it will be a lot easier for you. It's placing the order and putting it in a bag. Not brain surgery. And I know lots of people who run restaurants. And can still write in English. "I am the Leaders and Best" my ass.


July 11th, 2010 at 3:17 AM ^

oh im sorry im at 44,000 feet im on my phone im bored and thought id chime in. no its not fraud its on the menu at my 10% upcharge but my food is so good people want it. 20% is normal not 15% eat out at good places please i cover carry out fine.  now its more my severs cause people like you who go to outback ot chain places tip shit because thats all they know. would you like for me to teach you how to play hockey, fly and cook. im sorry i didnt know mgoblog needed to be an english class. you clearly understood what i said so why comment on my writting skills. i know im aweful at writing but, i can most likely do your job better then you. thats whats sad.


July 11th, 2010 at 3:41 AM ^

And why?  Because punctuation, capitalization, and sentence structure is how we communicate.  I've seen drunk posting before...frankly, that would have been a better excuse for you.  I mean, if you could do all those other things, and are doing so well...you could just pay your people more.  And buy a better phone.  I mean, I don't think you could teach me much of anything.  But I know I could teach you how to write. Because you couldn't do any worse with it. (And my job requires writing...so I doubt you could do that better either...).


July 11th, 2010 at 3:29 AM ^

I start at 20%, work my way down to 15% for lackluster but not horrid, up it for good, and downgrade it for rude. (Some of the best tips can come from screwed up orders that are the kitchen's fault but the server handles really well). I've left 100% tips on $100 tabs. I just don't want the standard rewritten by someone on a posting board.


July 11th, 2010 at 3:37 AM ^

I think that is perfectly acceptable. Waiting tables isn't hard...but it's definitely something that you either HAVE...or you don't. The problem are the people who you take care of perfectly...and then they leave you $4 on $82. And sadly these people are either incredibly cheap..or they just don't know any better and they think to themselves "leaving this kid $4 is such a good thing for me to do". Like they are doing you a favor, sadly people just don't understand how to tip.


July 11th, 2010 at 3:44 AM ^

In the state i live in, I believe they are required to claim 8% tips on each day, even if they don't get that much.(or so i have been told). Knowing this, i could never leave less then 15%(Usually more if excellent service is rendered) if the service was given to the standards i desire. Only time i have left less is when the waiter or waitress was horrible and my table was neglected.


July 11th, 2010 at 3:45 AM ^

And frankly, it's just as hard or harder where people are not getting $100 tabs regularly.  But of course, in take out in those places, they're not usually tipping bus boys or non-existent bartenders (because there's no bar), or whatever.  I've been friends with restaurant managers, owners, and waitresses.  I have a lot of respect for what they do. And I hear all the stories. At places I frequent, I like and definitely am one of Tater's "VIP". It's nice. Yes, it doesn't take a brain surgeon degree, so yes, it probably shouldn't pay $30 an hour.  But it should be a living wage. 


July 11th, 2010 at 9:36 AM ^

We've actually gotten him to go from a standard tip of $1 to a standard tip of $5. My wife and I used to make sure to bring some small bills for the tip and sneak it to the table or the waiter when we're leaving. Now we just pay the whole thing, which is much easier.

To be fair, a dollar used to be a good tip. In the fifities. He's just never adjusted.

Fortunately he doesn't go to places where he's going to get an $82 bill without his children or his wife.


July 11th, 2010 at 3:05 AM ^

btw a lot of places like outback applebees o'charleys will start upcharing for togo costs in the furture there not far behind the airlines in charing to cover there own costs.


July 11th, 2010 at 3:20 AM ^

i cant upvote myself from my phone i dont need votes im not hammered im watching my co-pilot fly im not going to edit my posts the plane is on AP but, i still dont trust it.


July 11th, 2010 at 3:52 AM ^

Drunk flying? Or posting while flying?  And the states thought texting was bad...

I hope you're not flying over me.  Assuming you're really in a plane and not riding a this....

But, ad nauseam....if you have your own plane, really....and you feel for your employees so much...why not sell the plane, and just pay them more? Give them a better wage not dependent on tip money for your carry out people? (And servers and everyone too). If it sounds like anyone is fucking them...it's you flying in your planes, while hoping poor customer will throw more money their direction.


July 11th, 2010 at 6:48 AM ^

is when they want a double cut filet cooked well, and maybe you had better butterfly that just to make absolutely sure that you eliminate every ounce of tenderness and juiciness that was in that delicious cut of beef initially.  And, by the way, do you have any steak sauce?


July 11th, 2010 at 12:32 PM ^

I've worked a number of jobs where my income was primarily based on gratuities, so karma dictates that I leave a buck here or there for things that I wouldn't normally think deserve a tip. But in general I don't think it's a really big deal.


July 11th, 2010 at 12:46 PM ^

I never tip at carry out places and I don't feel awkward or guilty about it. I also don't tip at buffets. Why should I? I'm the one getting up and getting my own food. If I go in and dine at a restaurant I tip 15% of the bill. For pizza delivery I tip $2-$5 dollars, depending on my total bill. I don't tip my newspaper delivery driver. I tip my barber $2 dollars. The rule of thumb I use is they have to be going out of their way to wait on me while I'm present.

Blue in Yarmouth

July 12th, 2010 at 2:49 PM ^

This is something that bothers me a bit. I get the same feeling as the OP when I don't leave a tip at a buffet, but what the hell am I tipping someone for? IMHE a tip is given because you were given service that went above what you would expect. I don't think it is something that should just be given because you were served. They are in the service industry, it is their job.

I have heard the arguements that waiters/waitresses don't get paid much and all that goes along with that, but why should it be up to the customers to make up the difference? I don't see why an employer not paying an employee enough should be the customers problem.

I think that a tip is something that should be given after you have received exceptional service and I have yet to figure out at what point it changed from that to being something that is expected each time you are served.

To conclude I will say that I am a hypocrite because I can't handle the shame of not leaving a good tip when I go out, but I really don't understand why it has gotten to this point.


July 12th, 2010 at 3:17 PM ^

I was going to type up a response to this post, but you expressed everything I wanted to say perfectly.

Why is the food service industry the only one which can get away with regularly shifting the cost of employees from the owner to the customer? Quality of service is largely irrelevent at this point, a waiter can do a crappy job trying to service 15 tables at a time and will still undoubtedly get 10-15% tips from each table due to "beveled guilt." I wouldn't mind getting a 10-15% tip at my office job every time I come out with a subpar report or a 20-30% tip if I actually do my job competently.


July 12th, 2010 at 3:48 PM ^

Tipping at carry out places is really stupid.  I don't do it.

Seriously, why should you pay someone more to do the job thier employer is already paying them to do?  And if their employer is not paying them enough, that's a problem they need to sort out with their employer, it's not my concern. 

MGoDC is (posted above me) is totally on point about how ridiculous that the food service industry gets away with passing employment costs onto the customers, over and above what the customer pays for the meal.

I would much rather food service workers be paid minimum wage, and have that cost passed on to me in a straightfoward and upfront way (through increased price in meals) than through the institution of compulsory tipping.