Why are people from some countries such horrible tippers?

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Steve Hill, Nov 1, 2001.

  1. Steve Hill

    Steve Hill Agent

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    i'm not going to rant and rave, though i could fill volumes. i've been a server 12 yrs. i support a family and make a very good living at what i do. now a a lot of nationalities are none for be being bad tippers and mostly it works out to about the same % of good vs bad as everyone else. now i'm not trying to put anyone down but the english just are god awful tippers. i'd say about 90% just f**k you out of your time and money. it's one thing if the services is awful but they'll tell how good a time they had smile and hand you a 9% tip. i guess i'm kinda mad right now cause i had a table in my section tonight that sat there for 3 hrs(normal length of time is about 1 1/2hr) rang up a $274 bill($120 dollars worth of liquor which i have to pay $12 of to the bartenders) and then tipped me $14 and thanked me for the good service. now think about this i paid $12 to wait on them, they took up tables in my section for double the length of time and then gave me a 5% tip. the grand total i made on this table was $2. this kinda thing is fairly with english guests. now all that to find out is there some reason that the english, in general, tip so badly?
     
  2. Kevin Coleman

    Kevin Coleman Second Unit

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    Man,
    That is pretty bad. I always tip 15% for good service but I won't hesitate to leave nothing if they continually screw up. I may have to cut my tipping back a little bit though since I am getting layed off. Hey it all rolls down hill.
    I am sorry about your night just pour yourself a cold one and sit back and relax.
    Kevin C.
     
  3. Philip_G

    Philip_G Producer

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    out of curiousity, how do the Germans tip?
    they're probably so used to bad service I imagine they tip well, or not at all expectng it to be included.
     
  4. Jeff_Krueger

    Jeff_Krueger Stunt Coordinator

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    I'm not sure about the UK but in most European countries it is customary for the tip to be included with the bill. so it is possible that they may not realize that we do it differently here. IMO I think it would be much easier if the we also just rolled the gratuity into the regular bill at a nominal rate that goes directly to the server and if the service is above par than an additional cash tip could then be included.
     
  5. Philip_G

    Philip_G Producer

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    I was thinking the same thing Jeff, I know in Germany the tip is included, so maybe when they give you 5% they really think they're giving you 20% and just don't know
     
  6. Mark Dubbelboer

    Mark Dubbelboer Screenwriter

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    Hey you're lucky there Steve.
    In canada 10% is pretty much customary. It's a pretty sweet deal when we get americans up here because we screw them so bad on exchange (we only give them 30%) that if they leave a 15% tip (seems normal for american folk) they end up leaving around a 40% after we convert.
    cha-ching
     
  7. Philip_G

    Philip_G Producer

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    it's OK mark, we screwed the canadians at the theatre I worked, 2 tickets was just over 20$ CDN
     
  8. Todd Hochard

    Todd Hochard Cinematographer

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    Steve,
    For the most part, I've always thought that the 15-20% tip is way excessive. I only do it out of guilt- I know for damn certain the restaurant owner isn't paying you what you're worth.
    Perhaps Europeans in general don't tip as highly- I don't know for sure. I know when I was in Italy a few years back- after tipping the waitress about 20%, I thought she might kiss me (she was pretty good looking, so that would have been fine by me [​IMG]).
    Input from our Euro friends?
    Todd
    P.S. Heading down your way tomorrow to visit the in-laws. Where do you work? My personal fav is Snug Harbor on Ft. Myers Beach.
     
  9. Jeff Kleist

    Jeff Kleist Executive Producer

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    Just a warning for you:
    With Japanese and many Asians, it is an insult in their country (to the establishment/server) to tip, because it implies you must pay extra for good service. There, the servers are paid well, so don't get mad if they don't tip you, they don't know either. Usually I take care of it when I go out with Japanese friends, and don't mention it.
    Jeff Kleist
     
  10. Steve Hill

    Steve Hill Agent

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    Philip_G
    on the average germains mostly tip very well. you have a higher % of bad tips as compared to americans but when they do tip it's usually very well.
     
  11. Philip_G

    Philip_G Producer

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    interesting... thanks!
     
  12. Steve Hill

    Steve Hill Agent

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    it's funny 'cause being a server i always over tip. i can't help it. i tip 15% for awful service as long as the server is trying hard and not being a smart ass. i know what it's like to have a bad day. that's the worst thing though about being a server, think about it how many times have you just had a bad day? nothings going right and you just can't get it together. now imagine if your boss said "i'm gonna knock you down to have wage today" that's what we have to live with. that's not even counting when you do a good job and still get a crappy tip. but hey that's the job i choose so whatever. do very well despite all that.
     
  13. Rob Gillespie

    Rob Gillespie Producer

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    VAT here (similar in execution to your state tax) is always included in the listed prices. When you got to the US, having an extra tax item appear on the bill can take a lot of getting used to.
    'Service charges' are often included in the final price here, but only on usually in restaurants. A real 'tip' is given at the customer's discretion. Personally I hate that places have the audacity to include a gratuity in the bill, practically forcing you to pay.
    On my three trips to the US (Florida, Washington DC, LA), it seems that a tip is just expected in almost every situation. If you're used to living the the UK, it sometimes feels like you're expected to tip just for saying 'hello'.
    [Edited last by Rob Gillespie on November 02, 2001 at 01:29 AM]
     
  14. Paul_D

    Paul_D Cinematographer

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    quote: now i'm not trying to put anyone down but the english just are god awful tippers. i'd say about 90% just f**k you out of your time and money[/quote]
    To follow up what Rob said, and to address a point that surprisingly hasn't been touched upon by anyone else - THIS is an absurdly generalised and ignorant question! It doesn't matter how many english people you've served in your life - any number wouldn't justify you condemning all English people as bad tippers. I'm quite happy to pay the 15-20% aslong as the service was good, and I'm a student who needs every penny for christsakes! But uh oh... wait.... I'm english. So I guess theres a now problem with your question isn't there!
    I also find it interesting that you believe not (or even under) tipping you is like "f**cking you out of your time and money". The tip may constitute a large part of a waiter's salary, but when if a customer doesn't want to tip, because the service sucks,it's your fault - not his!
    Really stupid question! Deserves a lot of stupid answers!
    [Edited last by Paul Dalmaine on November 02, 2001 at 02:04 AM]
    [Edited last by Paul Dalmaine on November 02, 2001 at 02:10 AM]
     
  15. andrew markworthy

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    The standard tip in the UK is between 5 and 10 per cent (to people who serve you in restaurants and some types of bar, taxi drivers, take away delivery people, and hairdressers or barbers). As Rob said, a service charge is usually explicitly or tacitly included in the final bill, so the 5-10 per cent is usually seen as a 'top up' to what the person will already receive (i.e. it's not as tight-fisted as it first appears). From what you describe, Steve, a lot of the time your *British* ('English' only refers to one part of the place, unless you mean that Welsh, Northern Irish and Scottish tippers are more generous, which I doubt) customers are giving you what they probably think is polite. Okay, we do send some pretty revolting examples of the nation overseas (soccer hooligans and whinging Poms being the two most obvious examples), but most Brits are polite and would be mortified at the thought that they'd offended 'local custom' - including most of the 'miserly' tippers you've encountered.
    However (if you'll pardon the pun), thanks for the tip - I'll remember to put a higher percentage in my tips when out of the UK. It's a shame this sort of information isn't more prominent in tourist guides.
    FWIW, I tip at 10 per cent most of the time, and 15 per cent if the service has been good.
    [Edited last by andrew markworthy on November 02, 2001 at 02:17 AM]
     
  16. Darren Crouse

    Darren Crouse Stunt Coordinator

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    While I'm at University I work as a pizza driver and make respectable money for my weekend shifts. As a result to re-invest in the karma pool, my wife and I always tip well, in the region of 20-25% Some nights are forgetable but most nights on average I make around $150-200 per night. But that is typically a 12hour shift. I have noticed particular cultures and nationalities like to tip less than others, however it all balances out in the end.
    Take Care,
    Darren.
     
  17. Iain Lambert

    Iain Lambert Screenwriter

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    I'll back up what Andrew said - 10% when you're used to the UK seems pretty good. I'm mainly shocked by the fact that you actually have to pay to serve them drinks! If these people had the slightest idea that was the case it probably wouldn't have happened; I'm used to the idea of paying a service charge for getting served bar drinks to a table, so the concept of that being a negative one is pretty stunning.
     
  18. Andrew W

    Andrew W Supporting Actor

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    I'm alway miffed by the entire idea of tipping.
    What tipping really means is that the restaurant manager is too lazy to properly evaluate the performance of his employees and therefore I have to do it for him.
    That's not my job, I just came to eat a meal and relax.
    ------------------
    Andrew in Austin
     
  19. Brian Perry

    Brian Perry Cinematographer

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    Jeff,
    If I eat at Benihana, can I skip the tip? [​IMG]
    One thing that bugs me about tipping is the attitude that if the meal is poor you shouldn't punish the server. The thinking is that it isn't the waiter's fault if the food is bad, late, etc. I say this philosophy is flawed, for two reasons. First, the waiter is your main contact with the restaurant and if you don't show your displeasure with the waiter, the kitchen and/or management may never know of the problem. (If you lower the tip, the waiter will eventually complain to the kitchen if he/she feels it is responsible.) Secondly, whenever I give a good tip of 20-25% it is due to many factors, some of which have nothing to do with the waiter but rather the quality of the food. In other words, the waiter doesn't share my generous tip with the chef who prepared my fantastic steak, so why shouldn't that waiter be penalized if the food isn't up to par?
    ------------------
    Home Theater Pictures
     
  20. Marianne

    Marianne Supporting Actor

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    I am British (also English!) and live in Central Florida (British tourist capital of the world).
    I have lived here for about 10 years and know that here it is customary to tip between 15 and 20% for service in restaurants.
    As has already been said, in the UK the service charge is usually included in the final bill. It is usually stated on the menu that a service charge of, say, 15% will be added. Good service usually gets you an extra tip on top of the service charge.
    Most of the 'English' customers that would go to a restaurant in Ft. Myers (or anywhere else in Florida) would be tourists and would not be used to the US custom of tipping 15-20%.
    Having said that, I used to work for a British travel company as a 'resort rep' in Orlando. We all used to tell our 'guests' about the US tipping custom.
    ------------------
    Marianne
     

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