I worked as a waitress during my college years and it was an invaluable experience.  Invaluable first and foremost because that’s where I met my soulmate!  And because of all the friends I made, the appreciation for food & how to cook it and all that I learned about the service industry.

It’s hard work!  I had no clue going into it.  I always saw it as a semi-glamorous job, where you chatted up the customers, made some extravagant tips, and got plucked out of the crowd to be the lead actress in a blockbuster Hollywood film or to run a large corporation, etc.

No, no, no.

Long hours, odd hours, no weekends, no holidays (or at least you have to fight for them off) and some tough people to deal with.  Tough coworkers, tough bosses, tough customers.

But I think that the harshest reality for me were the wages.  $2.35 per hour is a joke!  It was 20 years ago and is even more so now.  And yet, that is exactly what waitstaff are paid.  They are expected to make their money in tips.

That’s where we come in!

And yet restaurant staff, waiters and bartenders are not the only ones in the service industry that merit tips.  There are also…

  • Wine Stewards
  • Taxi Drivers
  • House Movers
  • Pizza Delivery
  • Cruise Stewards
  • Room Service Waiters
  • Golf Caddies
  • Car Wash workers
  • Busboys
  • Facials Person
  • Manicure/Pedicure
  • Barber
  • Newspaper Boy
  • Washroom Attendant
  • Tour Guide
  • Casino Dealer
  • Masseuse/Masseur
  • Hotel Chambermaid
  • Gas Station Attendant
  • Diving Instructors
  • Ski Instructors
  • Hotel Bellhop
  • Valet Attendant
  • and probably many more that I’ve forgotten (forgive me! And tell me!)

Not everyone makes as low a wage as a waitress per hour, and yet, all of these people are waiting on you and making your life more pleasant and comfortable and exciting and convenient.

They deserve to be treated with respect and given compensation for a job well done!

If you’re confused as to how much to leave as a tip there’s a handy chart at the bottom of this post.

But as a rule of thumb, this is the best way to proceed when determining how much to tip:

– 20% of the total amount you’ve paid is what you should always expect to pay out in a tip.  The only reason you do not pay this amount is because you’ve been treated badly.

– 15% if the service was mezza mezza.

– 10% if you got your food and IT was great but your server barely paid you mind

– 5% if your server sucked

– 0% if your server insulted you…but, then you should probably go talk to the manager, so it doesn’t happen again!


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