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(Click2Houston)   News: Group held hostage in restaurant. Fark: for refusing to pay gratuity   (click2houston.com ) divider line
    More: Stupid, held hostage, Police Reports  
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16043 clicks; posted to Main » on 02 May 2012 at 2:00 PM (4 years ago)   |   Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2012-05-02 05:26:13 PM  

S.A.S.Q.U.A.T.C.H.: A GRATUITY WILL BE ADDED TO PARTIES OF 5 OR MORE


They should get a discount, because if those 5 people all sat at different tables, the restaurant would lose potential customers and serving those 5 would be less efficient.

And, the day I "should" have to read the fine print, so to speak, at a diner, is the day I go ballistic and refuse to pay mandatory gratuity.

Adjust your prices if you need to. Don't offer the cheapest steak dinner in town then charge "service fees" that overcome and put profit for that dinner higher...

The principle of reduced wages in expectant of tipping is retarded in general, except for strippers.

Raise item prices, pay a fair wage. End of problem.
 
2012-05-02 05:29:23 PM  

Cheesus: Raise their prices 15% to cover it. If it doesn't, they were shortchanging their waitstaff in the first place.


Here in Michigan, that would mean taking wages from $2.65 to $7.25 an hour. I doubt a 15% increase in prices is going to help them break even, especially when you consider that a lot of people will quit eating out as the prices rise.
 
2012-05-02 05:33:39 PM  
We were out (four us, three adults, one child) and had 2 tabs and gone to eat at The Golden Corral. Now mind you, I know you get what you get when you go to a buffet so I wasn't expecting anything spectacular. They rang up my ticket before entering and asked if I wanted cash back for a tip. I said yes and said to make the bill an even $15.00 that would have left over $1.50 and I had additional cash I had planned to leave on the table. The cashier informed me that the minimum cash back amount I could take was $3.00 and/or 25% was the automatic tip amount calculated. I nearly fell over.

How in the hell can they ask you if you want cash back for a tip when they're calculating the tip for you and mandating what you can take in regards to cash back?

The service was lousy even by buffet standards. We left a $5.00 bill and I still threw in the loose change. Still less than $2.00 per person tip which is the minimum I'll leave at a buffet more if the server really took care of us.

So Golden Corral rather than getting an $8.00 tip of $2.00 a piece from the four of us got a $5.00 and chump change tip due to their attempt to make me pay a 25% tip for a freaking buffet.
 
2012-05-02 05:37:03 PM  
As a former server, the auto-grat turns out to be your best friend sometimes. Granted, most people tipped me decently (I'm a drink re-filling maniac, and I thought a pretty damn good server), but there were some parties of people who you could just tell were aching to tip you 5%. I auto-gratted every party that qualified for it, regardless of if I thought they were going to leave a decent tip or not. When dropping off the bill, I would say, "The computer automatically adds the gratuity to parties of X or more, and I'm sorry, it's annoying I know. Thanks for being such a wonderful group of people, and I hope you have a great night." Then, you get extra tips on top of the auto-grat. It works.

What a shiat job serving is. I used to pound margaritas behind the busser's station to deal with the customers. It helped. A lot.
 
2012-05-02 05:38:55 PM  

Cheesus: 9beers: Most restaurants would go out of business if they were forced to pay their employees even minimum wage. There's not much of a profit margin on a $3.99 breakfast of a $7.99 dinner special.

Raise their prices 15% to cover it. If it doesn't, they were shortchanging their waitstaff in the first place.


That math alone doesn't work, obviously.... What's the big deal if this industry works this way? The restaurant needs a high level of service from their waitstaff in order to get people to visit in a very competitive business environment. The tipping model works VERY well. Good workers make good money and the lazy, smelly, stupid, and slow make squat and move on to government jobs where they'll do much better. (just STFU and laugh) (not you Cheesus, the humorless and progressive beyond their own good farks who will be bothered by that)

Who gets screwed in this model are buss boys and other employees who get paid as if they are receiving tips, but are not actually in a position to receive any. If you work at a restaurant in a small town where it is amongst one of the few employers available, you might experience this. I did - washed dishes by hand in a kitchen so hot the fluorescent light fixtures would shut off in the summer, for $2.35 - $2.75 for a few years when min. was $3.35. (Oddly enough, the owners were not greedy Republicans, but rather Chicago Democrats that set up shop in the boonies and then retired back to the near-city)
 
2012-05-02 05:45:53 PM  
I'm not sure why anybody would want to wait tables in the first place. If you're the kind of person that doesn't mind or even likes being a server, work at a bar. I stuck around past closing time of the little bar I call home last weekend and ended up helping the bartender count her tips. She took in $237 and it wasn't even one of the busier nights that I've seen. Not bad for an 8 hour shift, especially when you consider that there's no way in hell she'll claim it on her taxes even though servers are required to.
 
2012-05-02 05:58:48 PM  
Sounds to me like they gave up their rights to gratuity when they turned the situation into kidnapping.
 
2012-05-02 06:01:20 PM  

saomai: We were out (four us, three adults, one child) and had 2 tabs and gone to eat at The Golden Corral. Now mind you, I know you get what you get when you go to a buffet so I wasn't expecting anything spectacular.


First mistake: Golden Corral is not like any other buffet, it is an entirely different beast.
 
2012-05-02 06:10:49 PM  

scottydoesntknow: Golden Corral


I've only eaten at Golden Corral one time but I have to say, I was impressed. Nobody is going to claim that a buffet is going to be the best food out there but for what it was, it was damn good. I've never been back because the one close to me has become so popular that there are usually lines outside to get it. Yes, most of those in line are fat.
 
2012-05-02 06:14:38 PM  

Alassra: I don't normally comment in these threads since they are invariably a sinking ship of complaining from service folks; however, that said:

We should start calling these what they are "Service Fees" instead of "Optional X% added for parties of Y or more" because I have witnessed absolutely horrid service in Mom / Pop establishments just as often as chains. I'm beginning to get annoyed at the tip jars placed in establishments as well.

Before you start fanning the flames of damnation at me, yes, I worked in Service, yes I worked for tips.

When I tell you my steak is still mooing at me and it's not what I ordered, blinking at me as if you lost the ability to speak English. Go yell at the cook / prep team and let's move on. I'm not blaming YOU for that. I will blame you if act like it's MY fault or ignore me for the remainder of my meal. Mistakes happen, let's just move on and be done with it.

:: shrugs ::


I also dislike the growing trend of tip jars in establishments where no one is getting paid the reduced server wages. Self-bussing Lunch counters, Dunkin Donuts, ice cream parlors all pay their employees the going rate. Why should we give them extra money for doing their reasonably-paid job?
 
2012-05-02 06:16:13 PM  

Trivia Jockey: just a quick Google search located several instances where people were arrested for this at the restaurant's urging, and the prosecutor declined to prosecute on the basis that it isn't a compulsory fee if it's called a "gratuity".


And the cops are STILL arresting this restaurant's patrons when they dispute the bill? Is the chief of police plooking the chef's daughter, or what?

My strategy, as an Internet Tough Guy, would be that if they refuse to let me leave, then I refuse to leave. 10PM, 12AM, 4AM, fark it. If it's your claim that I haven't settled my bill yet, then bring me another glass of water because you and me are going to be here for a while.
 
2012-05-02 06:18:06 PM  

Cheesus: Can we please get rid of gratuity and just pay the waitstaff a decent wage?

/soshulizm


do you want to pay 3 times as much as you do now?
 
2012-05-02 06:21:09 PM  

Orange Guy: No, I'm correct. Snopes is typically full of cr*p.


Snopes has gone wishy-washy lately -- "while all the 'facts' in this email forward are lies, the idea behind it resonates with some people so isn't that almost as good as the truth?" -- but on the issue of 'tip(s)' being an acronym for 'to insure [sic] promptness / prompt service', their analysis is indubitable.

Just because you read something in a Cecil Adams column thirty years ago doesn't make it historical fact.
 
2012-05-02 06:26:18 PM  

stevenboof: wambu: OtherLittleGuy: Locking them in and calling police -- this borders on locking in a shoplifter.

Not sure if legal.

For a shoplifter it's legal because a crime has been committed.

In this case the only crime committed was by the manager.

Can you buy a ticket to a ball game and not pay the "service fee"? I can almost guarantee that it is not listed as "gratuity" on the menu. At almost every place I've seen with this policy it is marked "service fee" to avoid this type of stuff. It is a crime to walk out without paying for goods and/or services that you receive.


Only a dick of a manager would not agree to remove the "service fee" if there was a complaint about the quality of the service. And then to call the cops over refusing to pay for poor service? Again, a dick move.
 
2012-05-02 06:30:23 PM  

9beers: Most restaurants would go out of business if they were forced to pay their employees even minimum wage. There's not much of a profit margin on a $3.99 breakfast of a $7.99 dinner special.


It's true. All the restaurants in California closed when they started paying servers minimum wage as a minimum.
 
2012-05-02 06:35:11 PM  

Rapmaster2000: ...I won't eat with a large group anymore who aren't my closest friends if the place can't split bills. I'm done with my wife's friend's birthday party with a bunch of people I don't know who act like they never get out of the house.


I can sympathize! We have one in our group who feels that if her drinks and meal come to 40 then her contribution should be 40 even though tax around here is 8% and tip for a large party is usually 18%. Worse yet, she is the money earner so she usually covers for her SO. I cant tell you how many parties the bill has been short by $20 and we had to conduct a 15 minute audit of everyone to validly point the finger at this one woman.
/and yes Chinese stereotype is in play on this one
 
2012-05-02 06:35:38 PM  

Walker: Because People in power are Stupid: she claims they locked the door and called the police.
And Then?

Choose your adventure:

1. When the police arrived the entire restaurant staff was charged with false imprisonment and kidnapping. It was then discovered most of them were illegal aliens. They were all deported immediately. The ones who weren't illegals are still locked up in jail.

2. Since this is Texas, the customers pulled out their guns, the restaurant staff pulled out their guns, and a scene right out of a John Woo movie took place.

3. In the end, the family ended up paying the 17 percent gratuity because they wanted to avoid any further problems


Good thing somebody ordered squab, very rare.
 
2012-05-02 06:37:16 PM  

nopokerface: Mandatory gratuity.

Like jumbo shrimp.


Link
static.grindtv.com
 
2012-05-02 06:52:31 PM  

9beers: Most restaurants would go out of business if they were forced to pay their employees even minimum wage. There's not much of a profit margin on a $3.99 breakfast of a $7.99 dinner special.


Somehow it works in Montana. Our waitstaff are required to be paid $7.65 per hour which is our minimum wage. If they don't make $7.65 in an hour (lets say they only make $2.30), then the employer has to make it up until it equals $7.65. If the make $10.65 in an hour, then they get a $2 bonus. We have no shortage of crappy restaurants offering $3.99 breakfasts, though they are usually in casinos who can offset the cost.
 
2012-05-02 06:54:53 PM  

hailin: I never really understood the large party gratuity charge, especially when the final bill is split. They wouldn't force gratuity if we were six people who walked in separately, where sat at different adjoining tables, were waited on by the same waitress, and talked through our meal. For some reason sitting everyone together suddenly creates such a cluster fark that 18% gratuity is required to tend to them? I don't believe it. I think it is just something restaurants do to bilk more money out of people. Here is an idea: charge a fair price for your food and to pay your staff decently that gratuity is optional...the way it should be.


So has anyone brought up the fact you don't tip at fast food? I would rather get a club sandwich across the street from my work for $6 than get a $5 Subway, but after tipping the server a dollar or two really changes the weekly lunch budget.
 
2012-05-02 07:00:00 PM  

omeganuepsilon: S.A.S.Q.U.A.T.C.H.: A GRATUITY WILL BE ADDED TO PARTIES OF 5 OR MORE
They should get a discount, because if those 5 people all sat at different tables, the restaurant would lose potential customers and serving those 5 would be less efficient.
And, the day I "should" have to read the fine print, so to speak, at a diner, is the day I go ballistic and refuse to pay mandatory gratuity.
Adjust your prices if you need to. Don't offer the cheapest steak dinner in town then charge "service fees" that overcome and put profit for that dinner higher...
The principle of reduced wages in expectant of tipping is retarded in general, except for strippers.
Raise item prices, pay a fair wage. End of problem.


even the mandatory gratuity goes to the server, not the establishment. Now if they are paying their staff $8 instead of $9 an hour, and force the tips higher to compensate then that would be a different story, but I cant think of many places that pay their staff more than minimum wage.
 
2012-05-02 07:02:36 PM  

davidab: So has anyone brought up the fact you don't tip at fast food? I would rather get a club sandwich across the street from my work for $6 than get a $5 Subway, but after tipping the server a dollar or two really changes the weekly lunch budget.


My thought is...if I am going up to the counter, getting my own drink, and all they do is hand me the food then I don't tip. If I go pickup the pizza I feel the same way. If I don't have a server, why would I tip? If you don't like making minimum wage preparing food, then go work somewhere else. There are only a handful of places here that tip share, and that is mostly the bars and casinos.
 
2012-05-02 07:15:31 PM  

Eurotrip: Alassra:
I also dislike the growing trend of tip jars in establishments where no one is getting paid the reduced server wages. Self-bussing Lunch counters, Dunkin Donuts, ice cream parlors all pay their employees the going rate. Why should we give them extra money for doing their reasonably-paid job?


I am from CA and just realized some states cut servers wages below minimum wage. In CA and Nevada the employer has to pay $8 and $7.25 an hour respectively in addition to any tips they earn.
/I too hate to see the self serve yogurt shop have a tip jar at the register.
 
2012-05-02 07:17:10 PM  
Now while I've never been a server I've had several cook jobs when I was younger so I did get to see what the wait staff had to put with. It's been my observation with large groups of people a mob mentality thing seems to kick in and the latent jackassery seems to go up a couple magnitudes. There tends to be an increase in petting snipping about inconsequential details, the waiter has to stay on hand more often for refilling complementary items, a drastically increased likelihood of being stiffed on the bill, and a increase of mess left behind to clean up.

So the waiter/waitress has to bust their ass the equivalent of two or more tables for the same table while still waiting on their other customers as well and run a greatly increased risk of getting not so much as a red cent for their efforts. I'm not saying this happens all the time with large groups but I have noted an increase probability of such events occurring with groups.
I'd imagine the 15-17 addition to the bill is to take into account the increased likelihood of this. The normal people who don't chimp out most likely realized this and often would add a little extra to the 17% for the extra effort. The ones who go full retard over it are most likely the very people this policy was created for in the first place.
 
2012-05-02 07:17:34 PM  

illicit: When I worked at Chi-Chi's they had to start charging for sour cream because people would order so much on the side and just take it all home. Same thing with lemons. That was the best and worst job I ever had.


Wow. Was this from corporate, or just in your store? I worked at Chi Chi's in the early 90s and we didn't charge extra for sour cream or guacamole or any sort of condiment that I can recall. But your descrip "best and worst job I ever had" is exactly right. Loved working there, but it was probably the most labor-intensive (and occasionally infuriating) job I've ever held.
 
2012-05-02 07:20:13 PM  

davidab: So has anyone brought up the fact you don't tip at fast food? I would rather get a club sandwich across the street from my work for $6 than get a $5 Subway, but after tipping the server a dollar or two really changes the weekly lunch budget.


Servers love to come into tipping threads and talk about how they need the money, and how anyone who questions the establishment of whatever-percentage-they-say-is-standard-this-week is cheap. But you ask them about the rest of the world that doesn't earn tips (and how they probably need money too), and they disappear...
 
2012-05-02 07:22:57 PM  

hailin: davidab: So has anyone brought up the fact you don't tip at fast food? I would rather get a club sandwich across the street from my work for $6 than get a $5 Subway, but after tipping the server a dollar or two really changes the weekly lunch budget.

My thought is...if I am going up to the counter, getting my own drink, and all they do is hand me the food then I don't tip. If I go pickup the pizza I feel the same way. If I don't have a server, why would I tip? If you don't like making minimum wage preparing food, then go work somewhere else. There are only a handful of places here that tip share, and that is mostly the bars and casinos.


I feel the same way. My point was that tipping was the reason the owner of the restaurant across the street doesn't get my business most weeks even though I am sure the subway has more people on shift at any given point (and subsequently more employee overhead)
 
2012-05-02 07:27:09 PM  

mikebdoss: davidab: So has anyone brought up the fact you don't tip at fast food? I would rather get a club sandwich across the street from my work for $6 than get a $5 Subway, but after tipping the server a dollar or two really changes the weekly lunch budget.

Servers love to come into tipping threads and talk about how they need the money, and how anyone who questions the establishment of whatever-percentage-they-say-is-standard-this-week is cheap. But you ask them about the rest of the world that doesn't earn tips (and how they probably need money too), and they disappear...


In many states they only make $2.13 an hour. Management is supposed to cover whatever they don't make in tips so they meet minimum wage, but I don't know of many employers that do this. Many times they're supposed to split their tips with the kitchen staff as well. So, in my state at least, they do generally need those tips. Your locale may be different.
 
2012-05-02 07:31:16 PM  

9beers: Most restaurants would go out of business if they were forced to pay their employees even minimum wage. There's not much of a profit margin on a $3.99 breakfast of a $7.99 dinner special.


Oh, really? That doesn't seem to be an issue in Oregon where it's legally required that servers be paid nothing less than the state minimum wage of $8.80 hour. Any tips they received are in addition to that. In fact, many non-fast food restaurants pay their servers $9 or more an hour.
 
2012-05-02 07:50:10 PM  

9beers: black


After watching the clip, I'd check their bags for silverware.
 
2012-05-02 07:51:20 PM  

inner ted: OtherLittleGuy: Restaurant policy: more than 5 people and there is an automatic 17% tip.

Locking them in and calling police -- this borders on locking in a shoplifter.

Not sure if legal.

isn't it just a form of detaining them? kind of a citizens arrest via locked door?

/locked shoplifters in a store once.... they kinda went ape shiat & i had to let em out like the critters they were for fear of the actual customers.
//csb


Depends on your jurisdiction.

In Kentucky you can only do a citizen's arrest if it is a felony committed in your presence. You then have to contact the police to have them take custody.

In Kentucky, a merchant can detain a shoplifter for misdemeanor shoplifting (don't know if that would extend to a dash & dine though, but I would think so since they are a merchant and walking out without paying is theft), but they must IMMEDIATELY contact a peace officer to take custody. Pretty much any delay in notifying the authorities crosses the line into illegal.

So, I don't know Texas law, but in KY I think it would be legal (IANAL) to detain somebody who refused to pay, but only if you immediately called the police and let them handle it. It looks like they did that, but the cops seemed confused as to if they legally could be compelled to tip.

The publicity damage to this place I would imagine would be pretty bad though.
 
2012-05-02 07:54:22 PM  

davidab: omeganuepsilon: S.A.S.Q.U.A.T.C.H.: A GRATUITY WILL BE ADDED TO PARTIES OF 5 OR MORE
They should get a discount, because if those 5 people all sat at different tables, the restaurant would lose potential customers and serving those 5 would be less efficient.
And, the day I "should" have to read the fine print, so to speak, at a diner, is the day I go ballistic and refuse to pay mandatory gratuity.
Adjust your prices if you need to. Don't offer the cheapest steak dinner in town then charge "service fees" that overcome and put profit for that dinner higher...
The principle of reduced wages in expectant of tipping is retarded in general, except for strippers.
Raise item prices, pay a fair wage. End of problem.

even the mandatory gratuity goes to the server, not the establishment. Now if they are paying their staff $8 instead of $9 an hour, and force the tips higher to compensate then that would be a different story, but I cant think of many places that pay their staff more than minimum wage.


Irrelevant.
It still goes to the server if the employer were to pay a fair wage and not require a gratuity.

Newsflash, if the food is worth it, people will pay the price, and if the service is good, people will still tip.

Keeping wages low because Sheila gets a lot of tips is almost as bad as copyright math, it's a shiestery practice designed by cheapskates to put the blame on the customer and not themselves.

Fair wage for the labor involved. Relying on the generosity of the public at large is a poor business practice, that's why it's typically called charity, but to begin demanding generosity, to allow yourself to pay slave wages, really, is despicable.
 
2012-05-02 08:27:54 PM  

Mr. Cat Poop: So how long until 20% is seen as cheapskate tipping? shiat used to be 10%, now 15% is considered low with 20% being what most of you seem compelled to leave.


You're quite right. I went to Cornell Hotel School. In the 1960s, it was considered to be a reasonable tip to tip 10% on beverages and 15% on food and not to tip on the tax.

Nowadays, an easy rule of thumb is to tip 2x the amount of tax on your bill.
 
2012-05-02 08:30:24 PM  
If we walk into a new place and sit down, look at the menu, and it says "no split check" or "17% gratuity added on bill" we get the fark up and walk OUT!!

I NEVER leave a tip for eating out. If servers can't make it with what they are being paid, they need to get another job, or a second job. If I leave a tip, thats less money I have for me and my family, and yes I work for MY money too, so bite me.
 
2012-05-02 08:35:07 PM  
That restaurant got some good publicity.
 
2012-05-02 09:19:14 PM  

Orange Guy: Mr. Cat Poop: So how long until 20% is seen as cheapskate tipping? shiat used to be 10%, now 15% is considered low with 20% being what most of you seem compelled to leave.

You're quite right. I went to Cornell Hotel School. In the 1960s, it was considered to be a reasonable tip to tip 10% on beverages and 15% on food and not to tip on the tax.

Nowadays, an easy rule of thumb is to tip 2x the amount of tax on your bill.


I leave $5 standard.
 
Poe
2012-05-02 10:00:15 PM  
I tend to tip generously, as do the friends I commonly go out to eat with, but that is under good service conditions. The day a restaurant tries to force me to tip for shiatty service is the last time I visit that restaurant, and holding me "hostage" means their property may be damaged if necessary to facilitate my "escape".
 
J1
2012-05-02 10:18:28 PM  

rhondajeremy: THIS...I never had a problem when I was touring Europe for 6 weeks. In fact, there were a couple of times I wished I could have tipped, my waiter was so awesome!


In most countries (European or otherwise) that I've been to, it's absolutely fine to leave a tip if you want. It's appreciated but not required or even necessarily expected.

As far as I know, the US is the only place that has this strange system of semi-mandatory 15% tipping. I'm not judging by the way, different cultures and all that, and if it works for you Yanks... though I prefer the European system because it allows a more genuine way to say thanks for good service.

Also: standard extra fee/tip/gratuity for large groups? First I ever heard of that. Good to know for next time I visit your fine country.
 
2012-05-02 10:21:01 PM  

Poe: I tend to tip generously, as do the friends I commonly go out to eat with, but that is under good service conditions. The day a restaurant tries to force me to tip for shiatty service is the last time I visit that restaurant, and holding me "hostage" means their property may be damaged if necessary to facilitate my "escape".


This. One may think from my former posts that I'm anti-tipping but I'm not...unless the servers are off putting, to include locking me in the store. Law or no law I won't abide by that.

I tip on a scale of time, and factor in other business. If the server is actively busing 5 tables in a diner(about 1 hour stay) 2$ per table is an additional $10/hr. If a couple tables tip low or are assholes, I sometimes up my tip out of empathy.

Sure, if they're really busting their ass for a big party, or customers that constantly forget and remember one item at a time making for umpteen trips, then yeah, the tip deserves to go up from there, unless the waitress makes a huff and is biatchy/snappy. Then it's a few coins.

If it's just 2 people, and the restaurant is dead otherwise, i'm not compensating for the absent patrons, that's silly. I may drop a $5 bill, but I'm not dropping 10. Even if I order the big steak and have a high bill for 2 people, the server did the bare minimum.

That is why the % rule, and apparently law in some places, is ridiculous. Value of the food has fark all to do with carrying it from the kitchen to me.
 
2012-05-02 10:28:14 PM  

Jim_Callahan: Gothnet: In that situation I'd have been pushing for number 1 - press charges for kidnapping.

If the automatic gratuity was listed on the menu then this is equivalent to holding a shoplifter, which is legal. False imprisonment only applies if the person being restrained didn't actually commit any offense or if he's held for an unreasonable duration (locking up a thief and immediately calling in the cops is considered reasonable).



Where I come from (UK), not only would it be illegal to hold someone over an unpaid service charge, it would be illegal to hold someone over an underpaid food bill. IIRC, UK law allows you to say "This food was awful, I'm not paying your asking price, I'll see you in court if you have a problem with that" and the police will side with you if summoned.

Where I live now (Perth) tips are entirely optional and not expected. This is awesome.

In both places, servers are paid at a more reasonable level, none of this stupid minimum wage exemption crap.
 
2012-05-02 10:30:24 PM  

Gothnet: Where I live now (Perth) tips are entirely optional and not expected. This is awesome.


*Takes notes* Would you say that's true for all of Australia?
 
2012-05-02 10:45:15 PM  

Mock26: Rapmaster2000: Egoy3k: I tip everywhere and I tip well but if the service sucks I will either tip poorly or not at all automatic gratuity is the dumbest thing ever. Yes it was clearly marked on their menus so they were made aware before ordering that this was the case but who thinks, oh lets eat somewhere else the service might be poor here and then I'd be forced to tip when I'd rather not?

You ever try to get a bill together for a large group without automatic gratuity? There's always some cheapass who's trying to reduce his payment, someone who wants everyone to cover the appetizer they ate as an entree that was supposedly "for the table", and someone who agonizes over tax and tipping on their two $5 dollar beers.

I won't eat with a large group anymore who aren't my closest friends if the place can't split bills. I'm done with my wife's friend's birthday party with a bunch of people I don't know who act like they never get out of the house.

I once was out with a group of people (about 12) from a social group (went with a friend who was a member) and it was a nightmare! First off the restaurant did not want to give us separate bills at the time of ordering (waitress said it was to keep the orders together in the kitchen, but to remind her later to break it down if we needed it to be). This would not have been a problem except for the shared appetizers! When the bill came and a few people asked to break it down a huge argument rose over who had what and how much of each they had. Finally, the poor waitress put all the communal items on a separate bill. That did not solve the problem, but it did make it less horrific. At one point someone actually started asking people to give a percentage of how much of each appetizer and/or bottle of wine they had! They even broke out a calculator! I got so farking pissed off that I tossed down a 50-dollar bill for the appetizers (which covered all of the appetizers on the communal bill) and left the table. I went t ...


As a waiter who has dealt with "Calculator Parties" and their parsimoniousness in the past, I applaud you.

Large parties generally order more and if there isn't an "autograt" (which is what we waiters call your "added gratuity 18%" or "18% service charge for parties of 6 or more", they tip a whole lot less. It is unbelievable that a cool deuce will almost always leave about 10 bucks on a $50 tab, while a party of three old couples and their calculators will leave 8 or 9 dollars on a $150.00 tab.

Since most servers rely on cover count balancing to make our rent, a party of 6 that leaves you 8 bucks isn't gonna pay the bills.

I run my ass off for tips, that said, even 18% added gratuities, because I have always hated knowing that I would look like a very crummy waiter if I didn't give great service to a party that I already know will tip at least 18%.

I have never worked for a restaurant that didn't through policy autograt parties of at least 8 or more for a fee of at least 15%.
 
2012-05-02 10:51:44 PM  
My guess is the crappy service is why the gratuity became automatic.
 
2012-05-02 10:52:53 PM  

Mock26: SuperNinjaToad: Cheesus: Can we please get rid of gratuity and just pay the waitstaff a decent wage?

/soshulizm

no because if waiters make $10,$20,$30/hr there is then really no incentive to 'work' for your money which is exactly what gratuity is!!

Sorry, but that reasoning is bull shiat. Other industries do not have gratuities and there is no problem getting people to work.


Ha ha ha ha ha.

Bet you're posting this from work.

Ask a waiter if he's ever farked* while at work. We're under scrutiny from beginning to end of shift by both customers, managers, and other staff. There are no breaks and there is no loafing.

*And by that, I mean "posted on fark".
 
2012-05-02 11:01:43 PM  

omeganuepsilon: Poe: I tend to tip generously, as do the friends I commonly go out to eat with, but that is under good service conditions. The day a restaurant tries to force me to tip for shiatty service is the last time I visit that restaurant, and holding me "hostage" means their property may be damaged if necessary to facilitate my "escape".

This. One may think from my former posts that I'm anti-tipping but I'm not...unless the servers are off putting, to include locking me in the store. Law or no law I won't abide by that.

I tip on a scale of time, and factor in other business. If the server is actively busing 5 tables in a diner(about 1 hour stay) 2$ per table is an additional $10/hr. If a couple tables tip low or are assholes, I sometimes up my tip out of empathy.

Sure, if they're really busting their ass for a big party, or customers that constantly forget and remember one item at a time making for umpteen trips, then yeah, the tip deserves to go up from there, unless the waitress makes a huff and is biatchy/snappy. Then it's a few coins.

If it's just 2 people, and the restaurant is dead otherwise, i'm not compensating for the absent patrons, that's silly. I may drop a $5 bill, but I'm not dropping 10. Even if I order the big steak and have a high bill for 2 people, the server did the bare minimum.

That is why the % rule, and apparently law in some places, is ridiculous. Value of the food has fark all to do with carrying it from the kitchen to me.


Oh yes it does. Someone ordering the soup and salad for 9 bucks is getting something that we already have prepared and we can zip it right out to you.

Someone ordering the crab-stuffed 29.95 entree is getting something that has to be modded to the chef and prepared perfectly and usually will include a starter or two which have to be timed properly, all while getting your drinks and handling 5 or so other tables artfully.

There is a HUGE difference to a waiter in handling a table that wants an elegant bottle of wine, two apps and two high-end entrees as opposed to a table that wants two Cokes, two salads and two burgers... but it's the same number of trips for the waiter. Especially with endless refills of the Cokes while the wine people have the option of pouring for themselves.

Your logic fails, Mr. Percentage.
 
2012-05-02 11:23:24 PM  

SoxSweepAgain: Oh yes it does. Someone ordering the soup and salad for 9 bucks is getting something that we already have prepared and we can zip it right out to you.

Someone ordering the crab-stuffed 29.95 entree is getting something that has to be modded to the chef and prepared perfectly and usually will include a starter or two which have to be timed properly, all while getting your drinks and handling 5 or so other tables artfully.

There is a HUGE difference to a waiter in handling a table that wants an elegant bottle of wine, two apps and two high-end entrees as opposed to a table that wants two Cokes, two salads and two burgers... but it's the same number of trips for the waiter. Especially with endless refills of the Cokes while the wine people have the option of pouring for themselves.

Your logic fails, Mr. Percentage.


Oh, the effort of being respectful to everyone, much less friendly, that must be quite test of endurance....for you.

You sound like disgruntled waitstaff that gets "robbed" of tips a lot, because you don't even know that you're an insufferable asshole.
 
2012-05-02 11:24:47 PM  

Paris1127: Gothnet: Where I live now (Perth) tips are entirely optional and not expected. This is awesome.

*Takes notes* Would you say that's true for all of Australia?



Yeah, pretty much. It's not so outlandish that they'll look at you like you're crazy for leaving extra money on the table, but it's not expected that you tip. I still leave something if the service was good enough that I noticed it, or if the server was chatty and helpful, but only then, not as a matter of course. And I've never tipped in a bar here, as far as I remember. I've only done that about twice in the UK.

Travelling to the US where you tip for *everything* and certain percentages are expected requires thought.
 
2012-05-02 11:27:50 PM  

Allaran: I ate at an Olive Garden (unfortunately) recently. We had split into multiple checks, but they naturally counted us as a full group...no problem. However, my family and I did not receive our food until after the entire rest of the party had finished eating (more than 1/2 an hour). They never commented on this with an explanation that our food would be right out nor apologized when asked about it. When I paid the bill, I left a $5 tip rather than the full amount from the automatic gratuity. The waiter returned to the table and said that I had not paid enough. I asked if I was obligated to pay the full tip amount. He said yes, so I asked to speak to a manager. While he went to get the manager, I pocketed the $5. The manager said it was not an obligation, so we walked.

Take what you deserve or you deserve less, buddy.

/Cool story bro


We used to go there twice a year with guys and girls cross country teams. Not my idea. Anyway one year we all threw in and were short still... did the math and found out they charged us 25% even though the menu said 17.

Wish we knew enough to argue and not pay a dime for any of that shady shiat. We just got it adjusted to 17 and let the manager know we were never coming back. About 40 of us. Yeah we were teens but not dumb.

/like eating in the private kitchen of a delightful Italian stereotype!
 
2012-05-02 11:33:19 PM  

davidab: hailin: I never really understood the large party gratuity charge, especially when the final bill is split. They wouldn't force gratuity if we were six people who walked in separately, where sat at different adjoining tables, were waited on by the same waitress, and talked through our meal. For some reason sitting everyone together suddenly creates such a cluster fark that 18% gratuity is required to tend to them? I don't believe it. I think it is just something restaurants do to bilk more money out of people. Here is an idea: charge a fair price for your food and to pay your staff decently that gratuity is optional...the way it should be.

So has anyone brought up the fact you don't tip at fast food? I would rather get a club sandwich across the street from my work for $6 than get a $5 Subway, but after tipping the server a dollar or two really changes the weekly lunch budget.


Get carry out. Eat outside or at office. Done and no tip necessary.
 
2012-05-02 11:35:08 PM  

wambu: Only a dick of a manager would not agree to remove the "service fee" if there was a complaint about the quality of the service


IIRC If they call it a "service fee" they actually have to pay their employees minimum wage, because then they're not "tipped". Anything to get out of paying your employees a fair wage...
 
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