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explain gratuities?

Discussion in 'Restaurants, Dining, Dining Plans' started by MonorailMick, May 1, 2010.

  1. MonorailMick
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    MonorailMick Earning my ears

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    We've been before which was enough to make us stress about things

    Who do we tip if we're just 4 ? does the tip go on per head or the amount of the bill before or after the tax ?

    Whats the minimum we can legally give?
  2. ukwdwnut
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    ukwdwnut Director of Recruitment Forum Host

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    we just give a tip what we think the service deserves, they do ask for 15% last time i saw, but you should be able to tip what you think it deserves, more if you think they deserve it
  3. uscwest
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    uscwest Senior Cast Member

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    The tip is before tax and based on the whole bill. What you leave is pretty much up to you but 15-20% is the accepted norm. You do not have to tip at Disney counter service places as a rule. However. there are several "counter service" places off site where you may sit at a counter as opposed to a table and tips are generally accepted there. Places like that coming to mind are Silver Diner, Denny's, Bob Evans.
  4. catrancher
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    catrancher Assistant Cruise Director Forum Host

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    However, while 15 to 20% is the accepted norm for good service, I'm not afraid to do significantly less than that if the service dictates it.

    For instance, on our last trip to WDW, we had a surly waiter and abysmal service at Le Cellier. I stiffed him. Didn't leave him a nickel. I believe that a tip is a payment (gratuity, etc) for services rendered. If I don't get acceptable service, I will not encourage that kind of behavior by paying for something I consider totally inadequate.

    On the other hand, if I have a reasonably pleasant, attentive server, I'll tip them properly.

    I let the level of service I received be my guide.

    Tom :)macwave:... not terribly hard to please!)
  5. foreverducky
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    foreverducky Addicted to Mickey

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    I also go with the service, as to how much to tip. I will leave nothing too, if it's horrible service.
  6. Britchick
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    Britchick Serious Forum Regular

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    Oh gosh Tom, what did he do? I've heard stories of waiters running after patrons because they didn't tip. On the flipside I have overheard fellow Brits on tables next to us saying that they're going to leave $2 for great service. I do tend to tip the lower end for buffets, certainly not 20%
  7. catrancher
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    catrancher Assistant Cruise Director Forum Host

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    Just about everything wrong! :mad:

    Didn't bring anything when it was required. Empty glasses. Kept saying things like "Everything is OK, yes.", then just walking away without giving us a chance to even respond.

    The people at the table next to us were ready to walk out (same server). They'd been sitting there waiting on their entree for over an hour. No drink refills, no bread, nothing. He hadn't even come by the table to see if they needed anything!

    Kept acting like he was doing us some huge favor just by gracing us with his presence occasionally. Without actually bringing us our drinks or food.

    I came within a hair's breadth of calling the manager over which in retrospect, I should have done.

    Not at all the service I expect at Le Cellier nor does it bear any relation to the service I have received in the past.

    Tom :)macwave:... I'm not that hard to please. Really!)
  8. keith
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    keith Camera nut Staff Member Administrator Forum Host

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    I know the bad service sticks in our minds and generally we've had great service but one time at liberty tree tavern springs to mind.

    We were sat down next to another uk family who were looking very quiet and subdued. I looked over at the lady and she said "thank goodness somene else is here, see what you think of the waitress".

    Just them this waitress staggered up the stairs looking more like a haunted mansion cast member than a LTT server, dark eyes, staggering around. As she got up the stairs she fell over and slowly got up and swayed towards us.

    She dropped some strawers on our table and slurred "drinks?" I said just water please and she swayed across to the other table grabbing hold of the edge of it to steady herself.

    Well when she'd gone the lady on the table said, shes been dropping things we cant understand her, she cant understand us, we think she's drunk or on drugs!

    I thought argh yeah but at the same time, part of me thinks would they let someone work that was like that so perhaps she's just got a medical problem and if so, I dont want to say anything :/

    Of COURSE The service was dreadful. She wasnt there most of the time, when she was, we were terrified she'd drop something and indeed, the next tie she arrived she dropped a tray of coke over the kids at the next table :( cue many tears.

    Well myself and the man next door said ok come on, we've got to have some guts and gently suggest that this woman shouldnt be serving. Whether its medical or drink/drugs, she shouldnt be serving. So we spoke to the manager who looked at us like we were the worst kind of scum. Nothing wrong with her and if there was dont we think they'd have noticed !

    So we go back to the table wondering if we've been reenforcing each others undeserved feelings and perhaps we've really been unfair to the woman.

    Minutes later she fell up the stairs with a tray full of hot tea. Went everywhere, other cms came and bundled her away to the back room. Obviously that was the end of the "service" such as it was.

    Anyway, we were sitting there thinking what we do now! manager isnt interested, so do we just leave? no cant do that. Pay the bill and just put it down to experience? well the other table didnt really want to do that given their kids were now sitting in cold wet clothes soaked with cola.

    So we both just put enough dollars to pay for the meal and thought we'll leave it at that.

    As we're leaving, the server comes shouting, in slurred speech, after us with her friend going MAD that we hadn't left a gratuity :unsure:

    I tried to ask if she was ok, but she wanted none of that just held her hand out for dollars.

    We all just walked away. Dont know about the other family but we certainly reported the experience but heard nothing about it.
  9. gwennie81
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    gwennie81 Earning my ears

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    I used to wait tables and remember the pain of only making $4/hr. plus tips, so I never leave less than 20%. Especially at a sit-down restaurant where you linger over your food. The longer you sit at a table, you are taking that table out of rotation for a new group of people to eat (and tip). The longer you stay at a table, the more you should tip. And even if it's only you and you only ordered a sandwich and a drink, don't leave less than $2. Generally wait staff know that the better service they provide, the more they will be tipped. If someone has worked their behind off, PLEASE consider leaving 20% (of total bill). That would only be $4 on a $20 check. It's not that big of deal for you, probably, but it does mean a lot to a server. Also, please consider the fact that a lot of times servers have to tip out other staff members (hostess, bus boy, bartender) so they don't even get all of their own tips. Also, sometimes the waitstaff has to pool tips.
  10. BUTTERHEAD1
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    BUTTERHEAD1 Addicted to Mickey

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    My wife always says that I over tip and she may be right. When I was kid my mom was a secretary during the day and waited tables at night to make ends meet and I remember how tired she would be when she came home after her shift. So when I have a waitress who does a good/decent job I usually leave a 20-25% tip and have on occasion given more that that. I have never left less than 15% for bad service,if I felt that the service wasn't up to par I would speak to the manager and let them know that the service wasnt up to par.
  11. Tink
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    Tink Cead Mille Failte! Staff Member Administrator

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    This is my formula:

    For table service: I start with the presumption that I will tip 20%. If there is a discount involved (sometimes there is a coupon, or the server just being kind doesn't charge for a salad or a dessert, anything that reduces the cost to me) I will add that discounted amount BACK IN to the total cost to determine the tip. The server should be tipped on the entire cost of the check.

    Servers are taxed on a presumed 10% tip. So, not tipping a server is a VERY effective way of making your displeasure known, as they have essentially lost money. If I am not going to tip, as Catrancher says, I'll almost always speak with the manager. However, sometimes the situation is so ridiculous (as with Keith's) that I won't bother. I don't go out to have to be hassled in any form.

    If it is a counter service (by that I mean, I order, am given my food at the counter and walk away to find my own place to sit, ect) I do not tip. There is nothing to tip for.

    At a bar, I tip 20% of the total bill (pre tax) for drinks.

    If it's a buffet, I'll ususally start at 15% but often (as with Cape May) the servers there work harder than a full service server, so I'll tip the 20%. We recently dined at Boma, and the server was desultory at best. He recieved 12%. He was shocked to the core to see us pull out money. I know he thought we were on DDP, and so felt he didn't have to work for the tip. Mistake on his part.

    So, then if the service is not good, we reduce from 20% to 18 to 15 to 12 to nothing as the case may be.

    I know that servers don't get paid a fair wage by hour, that they depend on their tips. However, they chose that profession, and the pay scheme that accompanies it, so I'm not going to be held hostage to their choice. If they want T(o) I(nsure) P(roper) S(ervice) from me that are "fair" then I will expect fair service.

    If I know the server, like our sweet boy Drake at Uno's I'll always add extra. He works very hard for us, and is very, very good to us. Regulars should make it clear that it's worth a restaurants while to have regular patrons. We tip accordingly.

    Now, all that to say to a visitor.

    Tips are expected in a full service restaurant and at buffets. The amount is based on the total cost of the bill, pre tax. The customary starting point for full table service is 20% up or down accordingly. Buffets are a judgment call but 15% up or down is just fine. Bartenders are customarily tipped 20% of the bar bill.

    Hope that helps and isn't too confusing.

    (Tink. The QUEEN of hating the tipping system in the US).
  12. keith
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    keith Camera nut Staff Member Administrator Forum Host

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    Really great post Tink thanks! :yes:

    I wonder why bar tenders are tipped so highly? 20% seems a heck of a lot for pouring a drink :lol:
  13. Tink
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    Tink Cead Mille Failte! Staff Member Administrator

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    Not sure, but they seem to be quite service oriented too. The newest "thing" lately seems to be introducing themselves and shaking your hand, asking your name. A little odd, I thought (we don't go out to get cozy with the barkeep, ya' know? LOL) but can't complain about friendliness, eh?

    I'm sure that you could leave less without problem. Servers do share their tips with bartenders for the most part anymore. The bartenders pour/make the drinks for the servers, so if they don't do it promptly, the server pays in the end. Not so sure I like that idea, but I don't make those complicated rules.

    I do NOT like the fact that bartenders usually share all tips with one another. I tip a person, not a team. :shrug: One bartender can be wonderful, whereas another can be downright rude (had that happen more than once) so it puts me off knowing that the "good one" is having to share with the "not so good one" who won't learn a thing because s/he is still getting her/his portion of the tips. One of the many reasons I just simply want everyone PAID a fair wage and call it good.

    The industry shrieks and says it will drive the cost of food/dining out up too high. That's stupid. We are paying tips now. Raise the wage. Increase the cost of the meals and call it a done. Sheesh. Not rocket science.

    However, the servers are one of the groups most opposed! They believe they make more at tips than they do with a fair minimum wage. Those in higher end restaurants most likely do bring home hundreds per night.
  14. ukwdwnut
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    ukwdwnut Director of Recruitment Forum Host

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    the thing i dont like is where they add the tip to the bill automatically. ive seen it on menu's not sure where tho whether it be there or here
  15. Tink
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    Tink Cead Mille Failte! Staff Member Administrator

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    There are some places that do add it to the bill, so check the bill VERY carefully, as they also keep that sneaky "tip" line on there. If you aren't thorough in checking your reciept you can easily double tip. Not a good business practice in my opinion.

    Sometimes you will have automatic gratiuity for parties over a certain size (size depends upon where you are dining). Again, be sure you check the reciept carefully.

    For automatic gratuity, there should be a notice, but often it's in VERY TINY print buried somewhere on the menu.
  16. ukwdwnut
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    ukwdwnut Director of Recruitment Forum Host

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    so its sounds like it was over there that i saw it....thats very very cheeky indeed, and as you say not good practice at all
  17. Tink
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    Tink Cead Mille Failte! Staff Member Administrator

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    I've had a discussion or two with managers over the practice. They usually say something pappy like, 'Oh, we can't contrl that. The register automatically prints it that way.'

    My response? "Then train your staff to strike it out when the grautity is automatically added." They never do have much to say after that.

    Said with a smile of course, and that sickening sweet way we have of talking when making an upopular point. :D :D
  18. keith
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    keith Camera nut Staff Member Administrator Forum Host

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    Yep, nothing I hate more than automatically added gratuity, extremely annoying. The whole "you can ask for it to be removed" thing doesn't wash with me, I don't go out to be guilted into giving extra money and then have to argue with someone if I want to change the amount.

    Sadly it's becoming more and more common :( towncars, Disney with the tables in wonderland card and so on.

    We went to a local place here in the UK a few weeks ago and they said oo we have a new menu. Nearly twice as expensive as it had been mind you for the same exact dish but I got to the end and in the small print was "18.5% gratuity automatically added" (I know its only 18.5 but its the UK, thats a lot over here! :lol:) so we left and I explained to the manager why. He said something like "mostly people wont notice or care" :/ then went on to offer to let me decide for myself but too late in my book. By that time the servers will be thinking oh what a ££$"$ and I don't want to have to explain myself or stress when I'm going out for a meal.

    It's really just greed. The owners just don't want to pay proper wages so they'd rather pay their employees less, charge the customer more, and then guilt the customer into tipping more and more as well. Remembering here the Orlando towncar company who enforced 20% gratuities, only for international travellers mind you, US folks presumably wouldnt put up with it, and then told me that good service should still be rewarded by a further gratuity. Out of their tiny minds seriously :lol:
  19. ukwdwnut
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    ukwdwnut Director of Recruitment Forum Host

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    lol of course it can be controlled just take it out of the equation full stop.

    i wonder what would happen if you got bad service, and deducted a percentage you thought was fair from the bill
  20. keith
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    keith Camera nut Staff Member Administrator Forum Host

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    Has anyone else noticed how often the "suggested gratuity" is actually an after tax %?

    We went to charleys, and you know how I love that place, but the last server wrote in "20% gratuity would be $xx.xx". I sighed, but we're English and in many servers books that means unaccustomed to tipping so I have to give them the benefit and think ok fair enough. So then I worked out 25% of the pretax amount because she WAS a good server and hang on, its almost the same as the 20% so either she's calculated it wrongly or I have :/ So did it another few times, still didnt work out. Finally discovered that yep, her 20% suggestion was an after tax amount :(

    I mean it's just scummy isnt it? Like I really care about the few dollars extra but I DO care about people just trying to scam me like I'm a freakin idiot :(

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