The tipping debate

To tip or not to tip, that is the question. Understanding this phenomenon is not hard, but often the actions of the waiter or the level of service received determines what exactly how much a person forks out for a tip.  A 10 percent tip is generally accepted.

However after coming across a post on Durban restaurants, The Good, The Bad and The Ugly page, one has to question it.

A customer recently posted on the page about the lack of service received by the waitress, so he gave her R0.16 cents tip.

He described the service as “if she was doing us a favour” so he decided to tip her badly.

Naturally, people started to criticise him for his decision, claiming his actions to be wrong, but was it? We all have jobs that we need to perform and in order to be successful our jobs need to be fulfilled well.

As a waitress you are expected to be attentive, take down correct orders, smile and be polite and be the best host one can be.

So when one is confronted with a bad waitress, one can only question whether offering her a “good” tip would be good.

Don’t get me wrong, I do not know what happened between the man and the waitress, but I did have my fair share of bad experiences. Like the time we went to a rather large restaurant in Limpopo. Our waitress was in her own world and slow on our orders despite the restaurant not being full. It was as if we were disturbing her from doing better things. She sighed when we asked for sauces or napkins. Despite her bad service I still tipped her the 10 percent and walked away.

It was only then that she started to smile and be accommodating.

Many would say it’s important to point out issues while at a restaurant as oppose to doing so on social media. But after hearing the horror stories of waiters doing all sorts of nasty with customers food, including spitting on meals, I often steer clear of being a complainer.

I think tipping should be an individual’s choice. You go to a eatery to enjoy a meal and it’s ambiance, a waitress is part of that package. While a waiter may have had a bad day, they need to put on a smile and do their jobs. Good services bring good tips.


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