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Cheap Tipper Who Left 2 Cents Makes a Great Point - Do you still tip even when you think the service was bad?

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Cheap Tipper Who Left 2 Cents Makes a Great Point

Posted by Adriana Velez on May 2, 2012 

my 2 centsThere are some awfully mean tippers out there -- like the jerk who left nothing but a note saying "you could stand to lose a few pounds."

And now here's the scolding "my 2 cents" tipper. This is a customer who left a handwritten lecture and two pennies as a tip. The note got posted to Reddit:

Waitressing 101. Don't tell every customer you're very busy, to excuse your lack of serving skills. Your job is to attend to us, not make us feel like we're an inconvenience. A little bit of personal attention goes a long way in the form of a tip. Just my 2 cents.

Now obviously this was an obnoxious thing to do. If a server tells you they're busy, it's probably because they're beyond the point of just busy and have reached the OMG We're Way Understaffed Desperation Zone. It happens -- management is cutting corners and not hiring enough waitstaff. Or you get slammed with more customers than usual. Or people call in sick at the last minute. And maybe this was just a way for a harried server to let her table know why they weren't getting the service she thought they deserved.

It's also important to remember that servers' wages are on the low side because restaurant owners know they're getting tips.

But the mean tipper has a point.

Maybe tips are for people who know how to finesse a bad situation, not just manage it. A restaurant should be very busy. And as just about any server will tell you, half of the job is learning the art of soothing impatient customers. It's about smiling, making people feel welcome, saying, "I'll be right with you, so sorry to make you wait" instead of "Phew, I'm so busy!" Even in the worst circumstances. That's how you get that little extra sugar from your customers: By pouring a whole lot on them.

Anyway, clearly the server on the other end of this "tip" was angry -- probably too angry to pick up on any lesson. No one likes a lecture. But just because the messenger is a jerk doesn't mean their message can't still be valuable. Taking in this customer's "2 cents" could make the server a lot more money in the future.

Do you still tip even when you think the service was bad?

by on May. 2, 2012 at 7:27 PM
Replies (11-17):
by on May. 3, 2012 at 9:25 AM

I do, I've been awaitress and bartender and I know how it is.

Also I would never leave a note like that. I have had very rude service and either spoke to the manager there or sent an email after.

I think that note sounds like it comes from a somewhat spoiled entitled-feeling person.

by on May. 3, 2012 at 10:40 AM
I do leave a tip but only 10%, instead of the 20% i usually do
by on May. 3, 2012 at 12:19 PM

I do not always leave a tip for bad service.

If there is not a crowd and I see the server laughing with other employees and we are going without drink or something else, then I do not leave a tip.

If there is a  crowd and I constantly see the waiter/waitress running back and forth and is really trying, then I will.

If a waiter/waitress is just absolutely rude then I won't..

It all depends on the situation.  THere have not been many times that I have not left a tip though.

by on May. 3, 2012 at 4:31 PM
I tip the same way.

Quoting chichiwvu:

This is me too. I like my drink to be filled within a reasonable amount of time, and not to wait for forever for my bill. I rarely get super horrible service, but even then I tip- just like 10% (I tip 18% for normal and 20%+ for excellent service). I know how hard it is, and I know what they make without tips.

Quoting mamabearlehman:

I always tip. I was a waitress up until I was 7 months preggo. I know what service should be like and how hard it can be. All I ask is that you keep my drink full. Not a hard job. If I get bad service, I still tip, but not as much as I would have. I also can tell when someone is new and cut them a little slack. I just can't stand the lazy waitresses or the ones that would rather text than make money.
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by 80sTardisGirl4Gore on May. 9, 2012 at 7:53 AM

i also base it on the quality of service but i've never done that 2 cents thing even though I have felt like it...some ppl really don't realise they need to WORK to EARN that's not a GIFT from most customers...everything gets turned upside down ..including the SERVICE industry where ppl EXPECT a tip and don't WORK to EARN a good tip...and get mad and upset with the customer when they aren't given a 50% tip...

by on May. 9, 2012 at 8:08 AM

We tip according to the service we receive.  If the wait staff is lousy, the tip reflects it.  If they are great, the tip is great.  I totally get that there are crazy busy times.  But, that does NOT excuse the lack of good service.  Some of our best service has come from waiters/waitresses who were incredibly busy but still went out of their way to put a smile on their faces and make sure all their customers were happy.  I've been there before.  And, just because you had a bad customer, it's crazy busy or you're just having a bad's not to be conveyed to your customer.  If you can't get around all that and serve your customers with a smile and good service, then, you're in the wrong business.

by on May. 9, 2012 at 8:25 AM

I was always taught that if you get really bad service you leave a 2 cent tip and that tells a server that they have given bad service.

I've never left a 2 cent tip, but I have left without giving a tip, because of bad service.

When I get extra great service, then I make sure I give the server a very generous tip and hand it to them and let them know personally they've given good service.

What's bad is to watch a customer leave a great tip on the table and some other server walk by and snag the tip. It makes the good server think they're service wasn't worth a tip. I've turned in several thieving servers before. What's fun is watching a thieving server try to deny what they've done, when several witnesses are there.

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