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Old 11-17-2012, 10:27 PM   #21
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Re: Is more than 18% gratuity expected? Im confused...

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Originally Posted by mom1mg View Post
Sorry a little OT but why do big parties have mandatory tips? We have 5 kids and get hit all the time with this. I would tip anyway so I don't care but I dont understand why it is required in most places either.

Op I'm glad you said something that was terrible for them to say something within hearing of customers.
I'm sure there are a multitude of reasons, but off hand:
a. Servers can generally overcome a bad tip here and there by one or two tables in their 3-5 table section. Large parties, otoh, can be their only table, or half their section in some cases, and can generally ruin their night if by chance the person paying the bill thinks 20% of a $500 tab is entirely too much for someone for 2-3 hours of work.

b. Large parties generally can require more attention of a server because, inevitably, different people in the party always want different things at all different times. This can cause a server to constantly run back & forth to attend to a table's needs because people at the table aren't aware enough to ask for things in a more convenient fashion. This can lead to a server who has other tables, not being able to get to the other tables as timely as possible.

c. The general anxiety that comes from a. in which a really large table may be their only table of the night in some situations. I've had this happen many times. A huge party makes a reservation for an inconvenient time like 7pm in which early diners can't be sat because they may not be up in time. Late diners won't be sat because large parties never dine in a timely fashion. That 7pm reservation for 20 results in 4 people showing up @ 7 with the rest of the party straggling in over the next 45 minutes and not actually ordering until after 8pm. Pile on separate checks, and the risk of some people being cheap and wanting to skimp on the tip because there's so many other people in the party they think it doesn't matter, or because they didn't get their 6th Diet Coke refill quick enough.
Many establishments protect their staff by including gratuity so as not to have a server's entire night's wages shot by an inconsiderate group of amateur diners.

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Old 11-17-2012, 10:34 PM   #22
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Re: Is more than 18% gratuity expected? Im confused...

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Originally Posted by mom1mg View Post
Sorry a little OT but why do big parties have mandatory tips? We have 5 kids and get hit all the time with this. I would tip anyway so I don't care but I dont understand why it is required in most places either.

Op I'm glad you said something that was terrible for them to say something within hearing of customers.
I hate it when we get an automatic tip added for our brood (parents and kids=8) Many servers in our area seem pretty lazy and inattentive when they get a big group mostly kids. We don't go out as a family too often and I am pretty picky where we go because of this.
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Old 11-17-2012, 10:46 PM   #23
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Re: Is more than 18% gratuity expected? Im confused...

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I absolutely hate when there is a required gratuity. We are a big family and most times the service is not worth the gratuity because they know they will get it no matter how they wait on us. If the service is really bad I will even argue with management to have it taken off and if they refuse then I let them know we will not return. We at out on our daughters birthday and they counted our infant as a person just so they could get the gratuity .. Yeah that didn't fly with us and we refused it. She would have gotten a better tip if she had just waited on us properly instead of counting on it. She was not a good waitress to us.

I do not think you should have tipped more than 18%. I feel that is more than sufficient if there was nothing exceptional about the service. If the server goes above and beyond we might tip 20% but no more than that. I would let the manager know she was complaining about it. That could really turn off future business and he would not want that either.
To the bolded - We had that happen when DS was about 6 months old. We went to a buffet with a big group of DH's friends, and I got ONE slice of peach, and a few peas for DS to eat since he was learning to self feed. They charged us a full buffet price for DS "since he ate". Yeah...needless to say, that didn't happen, and in addition to really bad service, the person that should have received a HUGE tip from our table received nothing.

If 18% was automatically included, we wouldn't have added any additional tip, especially just for "okay" service.
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Old 11-17-2012, 10:53 PM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by addicteddad

I'm sure there are a multitude of reasons, but off hand:
a. Servers can generally overcome a bad tip here and there by one or two tables in their 3-5 table section. Large parties, otoh, can be their only table, or half their section in some cases, and can generally ruin their night if by chance the person paying the bill thinks 20% of a $500 tab is entirely too much for someone for 2-3 hours of work.

b. Large parties generally can require more attention of a server because, inevitably, different people in the party always want different things at all different times. This can cause a server to constantly run back & forth to attend to a table's needs because people at the table aren't aware enough to ask for things in a more convenient fashion. This can lead to a server who has other tables, not being able to get to the other tables as timely as possible.

c. The general anxiety that comes from a. in which a really large table may be their only table of the night in some situations. I've had this happen many times. A huge party makes a reservation for an inconvenient time like 7pm in which early diners can't be sat because they may not be up in time. Late diners won't be sat because large parties never dine in a timely fashion. That 7pm reservation for 20 results in 4 people showing up @ 7 with the rest of the party straggling in over the next 45 minutes and not actually ordering until after 8pm. Pile on separate checks, and the risk of some people being cheap and wanting to skimp on the tip because there's so many other people in the party they think it doesn't matter, or because they didn't get their 6th Diet Coke refill quick enough.
Many establishments protect their staff by including gratuity so as not to have a server's entire night's wages shot by an inconsiderate group of amateur diners.
This. Big parties are a whole different ball game. Most places have these policies in place meant for parties of adults, but usually the register system automatically adds the tip. Once the server enters in 6 or more guests, the tip is on there, although it could be overridden by a manager.
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Old 11-17-2012, 10:53 PM   #25
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This probably isn't going to end pretty..the thread.

For me I tip a min of 20% unless horrible service. So normal to good gets 20% maybe a bit more, I round up. Excellent gets anything from 23% to 30% Depends on how excellent. One thing or whole time.

My idea of horrible service is very bad. I am a former server and am very forgiving and relaxed as a customer.

Alisha I know how to spell my Samsung Galaxy S2 does not.
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Old 11-17-2012, 11:40 PM   #26
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Re: Is more than 18% gratuity expected? Im confused...

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Originally Posted by mommy2kaitlyn View Post
This probably isn't going to end pretty..the thread.

For me I tip a min of 20% unless horrible service. So normal to good gets 20% maybe a bit more, I round up. Excellent gets anything from 23% to 30% Depends on how excellent. One thing or whole time.

My idea of horrible service is very bad. I am a former server and am very forgiving and relaxed as a customer.

Alisha I know how to spell my Samsung Galaxy S2 does not.
Same. I'll always tip 20% unless service is abominable. I can't think of a time I've ever had bad service though. I think it's dumb when restaurants include tip because odds are I would have tipped more had they not.

I've never worked food service, but I can ony imagine it's less than enjoyable at times.
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Old 11-18-2012, 12:19 AM   #27
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Re: Is more than 18% gratuity expected? Im confused...

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To the bolded - We had that happen when DS was about 6 months old. We went to a buffet with a big group of DH's friends, and I got ONE slice of peach, and a few peas for DS to eat since he was learning to self feed. They charged us a full buffet price for DS "since he ate". Yeah...needless to say, that didn't happen, and in addition to really bad service, the person that should have received a HUGE tip from our table received nothing.

If 18% was automatically included, we wouldn't have added any additional tip, especially just for "okay" service.
My local buffet allows children under 2 to eat free. They charge a discount kid's price from 2 to 12. That is crazy to charge for a full price when the child is basically eating off Mom or Dad's plate.
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Old 11-18-2012, 12:45 AM   #28
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Re: Is more than 18% gratuity expected? Im confused...

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Originally Posted by mommy2kaitlyn View Post
This probably isn't going to end pretty..the thread.

For me I tip a min of 20% unless horrible service. So normal to good gets 20% maybe a bit more, I round up. Excellent gets anything from 23% to 30% Depends on how excellent. One thing or whole time.

My idea of horrible service is very bad. I am a former server and am very forgiving and relaxed as a customer.

Alisha I know how to spell my Samsung Galaxy S2 does not.
Same here. We usually tip at least 20%, but we are very relaxed and forgiving customers like you. I understand when someone is just having a bad day and that mistakes happen, but most people can tell a difference between that and when someone is just a jerk, and I adjust accordingly. I'm usually more generous than not, but I have no problem cutting that generous tip if they are just bad servers.

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My local buffet allows children under 2 to eat free. They charge a discount kid's price from 2 to 12. That is crazy to charge for a full price when the child is basically eating off Mom or Dad's plate.
Yeah, he was only 6 months old, he wasn't even regularly eating solid food yet, let alone enough to pay for an entire meal. All I did was grab some peaches and peas for me to eat, and gave him one slice of mashed up peach (which he at maybe half of) and maybe 4 or 5 individual peas off my plate. I would understand even if he was maybe a year old or so, and we actually got him his own plate, then I wouldn't mind paying for it, but that isn't what we did.
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Old 11-18-2012, 06:12 AM   #29
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Re: Is more than 18% gratuity expected? Im confused...

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Originally Posted by mommy2kaitlyn View Post
This probably isn't going to end pretty..the thread.

For me I tip a min of 20% unless horrible service. So normal to good gets 20% maybe a bit more, I round up. Excellent gets anything from 23% to 30% Depends on how excellent. One thing or whole time.

My idea of horrible service is very bad. I am a former server and am very forgiving and relaxed as a customer.

Alisha I know how to spell my Samsung Galaxy S2 does not.
This is us too. I also think ppl who tip 15"% or less for fair to good service have probably never worked as a server. And, personally speaking, waiting on a table with kids is much more work than adults (and kid meals are a lot cheaper, so if you have a table of four kids, that is more work for less money, generally speaking, servers do not love waiting on kids), and a lot of the time the adults will tip less... Or definitely not more. And most times the server is having to tip share with the bartender and host.
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Old 11-18-2012, 07:00 AM   #30
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Re: Is more than 18% gratuity expected? Im confused...

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Originally Posted by mommy2kaitlyn View Post
For me I tip a min of 20% unless horrible service. So normal to good gets 20% maybe a bit more, I round up. Excellent gets anything from 23% to 30% Depends on how excellent. One thing or whole time.

My idea of horrible service is very bad. I am a former server and am very forgiving and relaxed as a customer.
Same here. The difference between a stingy tip and a good tip is just a couple bucks. Say we spend $35, I could tip $5.25 at 15%, or $7 at 20% -- why not tip 20%? I'm already out $40.25, why not just be decent to her at make it $42? If someone's really gone above and beyond - talked us through some picky options, helped us clean up a spilled drink or something -- I'll throw a couple more on.

I even had a table once where they were acting apologetic and saying they were on a budget, and tipped really badly (around 5%). Really? Your budget is so tight you can't spare an extra dollar or 2 to make it a decent tip, but not too tight to take your family of 5 to a sit-down restaurant? Do you think the server is just there donating her time to wait on you?

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