I’m not sure why everyone has such a hard time when it comes to tipping; how hard is it to figure what 15% of the total bill is? I always get asked, “How much should we leave?” when eating out. I’m not really sure why this is, (maybe because I’m a Chef) but here are some suggestions for those of you who are confused.
First of all 15% is average…let me say that again…average. If you receive good service, then expect to leave this much. If you receive poor service, you can leave less. If your server goes above and beyond the call of duty, let’s say they have the Chef make you something off the menu, leave considerably more. How much more? Well, that’s up to you. Here are some more guidelines for you to remember when eating out.
- Waiters and waitresses make on average less than three dollars an hour.
- If your food comes out undercooked, or un-edible, it’s NOT the fault of the server.
- Don’t leave change on the table…ever; it’s tacky and unacceptable.
- If you don’t have enough money to leave a tip, stay at home.
- When your party ends up staying more than two hours, leave 30%. That’s right. If your server could have made 15% from another seating, than: 15% + 15%=30%, get it?
- If you are with a party and all order separate checks leave an automatic 20%. It’s a lot of extra work for your server, so have some consideration.
- On a side note…servers hate it when you do this, how hard is it to figure out who owes what from looking at the check?
- If the gratuity is included in the check (usually for parties over 10) it’s still ok to leave some additional money depending on the quality of the service.
Remember: Restaurant workers are some of the hardest working and under-appreciated individuals in the hospitality industry, treat them well and you may be surprised at what you get in return!
Chef Chuck Kerber