Why Your Reasons for Demanding a Tip are Wrong

Waiters are understandably upset about why I don’t tip and have given many illogical reasons in support of this ridiculous practice. Here’s a rebuttal of the most common ones.

Bullshit 1: We only Pay for the Food. Service is Extra

The menu price doesn’t include just the cost of preparing the food and paying the chef. It includes the restaurant setting, the tables, the cutlery, the effort and investment that the restaurant owner has put into the dining area. Now guess what? Since I’m paying for it, the restaurant has to give it to me. And how do they accomplish this?

Waiters. Ding ding!

See without waiters, the restaurant has no way of delivering the dining experience to me that I’m paying for. I’m paying for sitting down in a nice place. I’m paying for the air conditioning. I’m paying for the nice tablecloth and for my food to be delivered to me in a reasonable time. The menu price covers all this. Waiters are just the restaurant’s way of bringing me my food. Of fulfilling their part of the contractual obligation.

Bottom line. Servers are not independent contractors. They’re not an “extra” that you have to pay for. By hook or crook, the restaurant needs to deliver the product. Whether they use waiters or conveyor belts (a term that many seem to object to), is not my business. I don’t care. The waiters can just melt into the background and let me enjoy my food in peace. If the menu includes free refills or whatever, then waiters are required to deliver that as well. Why? Because…wait for it….I paid for it!

Bullshit 2: It’s the custom. It’s ‘merica!

Yeah right. You do realize that not all customs are created equal don’t you? Slavery was a “custom” back in the day and so was race and sexual discrimination. Anyone with an ounce of integrity does what they feel is right. There are many harmless customs in the world like bowing instead of shaking hands, or using chopsticks instead of forks etc that are morally neutral. It really makes no difference if you follow them or not.

But tipping? Hell no! It’s not morally neutral. If you get better service because you’re a good tipper, then you’re essentially paying a bribe to servers to get them to do their job properly next time. All customs have a limit. And tipping is such a convenient custom isn’t it? Hell, I wish I had a custom in place for people to just throw money at me.

And just in case someone feels I don’t appreciate the US, there are many great things about this country that I love and I’ve blogged about repeatedly. Freedom of expression, the way Americans show respect to their armed forces, the politeness of people as you walk by on the road, the work culture, the individuality.

I just don’t like tipping. It’s not as if a person has to blindly accept everything in a country without judgment. There are good things. And there are bad things. Just like everywhere else.

Bullshit 3: The cost of food will increase dramatically

Someone needs to do basic math. Increasing the price of food to pay minimum wage to waiters will not double the price of food. Some have even gone so far to claim that it’ll increase 4-5 times. Ridiculous. Totally, utterly ridiculous. Let’s dissect this rubbish.

As an example, I’ll take Chilis. A waitress at Chilis was so kind as to comment saying that the price of food at her restaurant will increase by 3 times – $30 for a $10 burger. Using the statistics she herself gave in her comment, there are 12 waiters (at full capacity) who need to be paid minimum wage. That’s $5 extra per hour per waiter making it a net total of $60 per hour that has to be added to the price of food on a full day.

$60/hr? For 12 waiters. That’s it! It’s peanuts. If you assume even that each waiter is serving just four tables. That’s $5 an hour extra they have to make from four tables. Even if we say that each table sits for a massive two hours, the extra paid per table is way less than $5. On the total bill. Worst, worst case scenario.

You know what? Customers won’t even notice. So stop the garbage about the prices of food going up several times to pay minimum wage. It’s utter nonsense. The only reason waiters don’t want this system in place is because they earn a hell of a lot more than than minimum wage using our tips. And they come across as the victims.

Waiters are Struggling Mothers/Students

Look, it’s not as if I don’t have sympathy for those who struggle in life. I just don’t think it’s my problem. And I specially don’t like it being impinged upon me. Generosity is one thing. Having money demanded from you is something totally else. Any tip I give is out of the generosity of my heart and I expect some gratitude for helping those in need. It’s not something I have to do since…refer to Myth 1.

Bottom line: Socially mandated tipping is a scam. I can’t believe how intelligent people have been hoodwinked into it. Probably because they like to come across as “nice” people and feel sorry for servers who hover around looking expectantly. Well, I find that irritating and I won’t buy into it.

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  1. Writers like this is the reason the US should stay out of other countries problems and … Go eat a cow Bhagwad! Maybe we should have let your family suffer during the Sino-Indian War and I could name a dozen other examples of how India’s culture is flawed and needed US help(like economics)… Readers remember they are not all born equal there… It’s a Caste system and he just want to be on top.


  2. Bhagwad.
    Exactly what purpose do you serve to this country aside from denigrating the people who live and work within it? Precisely what makes you better; above those you encounter in all our walks of life? Are you of Godly lineage? Do you speak in a Divine Tongue? Do you bring with your opinion a temperance that which we lesser Folk fail to understand?
    Do forgive me, but I find you parochial and judgemental; this is bothersome. Your hyperbole thinly veils your prejudice toward the country you profess to adopt.


  3. I am in total agreement w/you. I worked as a waitress ever summer through college and it was NOT the hardest job I had. It sucked but I did my job well regardless of whatever tips I was going to get, so I would not be fired for performing poorly. Don’t get me wrong – I loved getting big tips (who wouldn’t??), but recognized that customers should not be the ones subsidizing our wages,


    • In reply to Belinda

      Is a waiter in a restaurant, most often servers tip out 5% of their total sales to their assistant servers,and bartenders irregardless of what they get an actual tips. So if I wait on you and you spend $100, leave nothing for the tip, I essentially lose out on $5 for that hour. Plus it is nice to have someone in actually invested into your experience. Having someone who can give you in-depth knowledge of pairings with wine and food, allergies, customizing your experience to suit your needs. I’m assuming you’ve had limited experience with phenomenal service. Perhaps your perspective will open up and you will change your ability to receive it and fully appreciate it.


  4. Like you said you have the choice to tip and not doing so is completely fine. If you don’t want the extra service and you don’t plan on tipping let them know! You are paying for everything else including me bring your food but the rest of the service experience isn’t including. So instead of continuing to vomit these useless words that most people don’t agree with, just tell your server your not going to tip. He or She will provide what you payed for and absolutely nothing more. They will not chat with you, they will not kneel next to you, and they will not pay attention to you. Just as you requested. So you as customer can choose to only recieve what you paid for and us as waitresses can choose to only serve for what were paid for. All of this isn’t quite the disaster you’ve all made it out to be, most everyone is going to tip not always fairly but what is this ones guys opinion matter? I do my job because I love it, I love talking to people and making sure people have a great experience. If this guy came in and told me straight up he wasn’t going to tip, cool here’s your food eat it pay for it and leave so I can take care of my next customer. My husbands in Afghanistan for his 4th time, trust me everyone one guy choosing not to tip (yes I know there is more than just him) is hardly as big of a problem as you make it.


    • In reply to Ariana

      I think he’s more trying to help servers. Servers should be paid minimum wage just like every other job, instead of making the customer decide arbitrarily how much money servers make. The service you as a server provide is one that should be included with the experience of going to a restaurant. You do your job and that is to provide excellent service to the patron entering your domain. If servers were paid a regular wage, tips could still be a thing, but now they would always be a pleasant surprise instead of sometimes pissing you off and ruining your day. Of course no one is going to come in and tell you they are not going to tip because they still want decent service. Tipping is like this weird bribing tactic to make servers do better than they normally would. The service should be the same across the board, whether you’re getting a tip or not, that’s what the restaurant would like of you I’m sure.

      Anyone reading this, check out this video:


  5. I want to start out by saying that I love taking care of and interacting with people. Sure, it hurts my feelings when I make a guest truly enjoy their experience by going above and beyond only to receive no tip, but I realize it is part of the job. That being said, I would like to point out a possibility you may not have realized. If servers were to be paid hourly, the managers/owners of restaurants would likely schedule fewer of them to save on labor costs. Add to that the fact that your server would not feel the stress to earn a tip as they work a larger and busier section, they may not be so inclined to move as fast to accomodate your needs as they would if their income truly depends on your level of satisfaction. Did you know that a tip is to insure prompt service? I understand that it is not a perfect system, but does taking it out on a person who is trying to make a living and having such callous feelings towards another human being really make you feel good about yourself? To all of the people who have said such terrible, hateful things about people in the service industry I truly do feel sorry for you. Either you have a very unpleasant life that makes you spiteful to others or you have lost your humanity somewhere along the lines to show such disregard to another person. I may be a lowly, humble server but at least I am happy and have compassion for others. Now that I have said what I felt needed to be said, I will take my leave of this hate filled thread and go back to positive living. May you all find peace and happiness in your lives. ☺


  6. The fact is, the author is a hypocrite. I say that because in his country, tipping is known as Baksheesh. That’s tipping in India. In fact it’s very customary. As well as bribing the man to stay off their back. We grat their tables when they come in because like all Indian groups that enter, they order tons of food, take 2 bites of each, leave a ton of leftovers and a big mess, don’t bother to box any of it up and never tip. They ask 10 tons of questions are very, very particular on how they want everything laid out not giving a damn how many customers are waiting on the same server. Meanwhile the waiter/waitress makes $4 an hour and taxes are slapped on that as well as tips. It’s called Wages, Tips and Earnings (Sound familiar my fellow Americans?). So yes, the server smiles despite your many rude gestures and grits his/her teeth, they return promptly with the food you ordered just the way you like it… Including “WATER NO ICE!!!” So yes, waiters and waitresses work their asses off for you to pig out and leave a big mess, but be respectful and leave a tip. If you are not looking to tip or too worried about money, then cook at home, don’t waist our time. Guaranteed that waiters, waitresses and bartenders remember faces. The next time they see you, they definitely show you their dissatisfaction by taking their sweet time in serving you next time, or telling you, “Sorry, table is reserved.” sounds harsh, but we have businesses to run and customers to take care of. If you want to be a customer and you enjoy the food and the fact that you have been waited on hand and foot by a waiter or waitress who’s been running around on their feet for the past 8-10 hours and still providing you a smile and a greeting, then give a little baksheesh and stop being so stingy.


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