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The Importance of Tipping: How a Few Dollars Can Make Your Server's Day

posted Jan 22, 2015, 5:17 AM by Unknown user

Alyssa Miller


Going out to eat is a fun thing to do with friends and family.  The food, drinks, and atmosphere combined with great company all lead to an amazing night. However, while you are having a fun and carefree time, your server is working nonstop behind the scenes to make sure your night runs smoothly, making you want to come back.  Juan Flores, server at Olive Garden in Findlay, Ohio, says “it is our job to keep the customers happy.”


Servers often do most everything to keep the restaurant running.  They seat the guests, take and get drink and food orders, make

food as needed, and clean the restaurant, all while having to deal with customers who have crying and screaming children or who continually change their minds or are never satisfied with their meals.  The stress on a server can be taxing.  Why then, at the end of the night, do they sometimes go without a tip after all they have done for their customers?

Some customers claim the reason they do not tip is because servers make enough money without tips.  This is not true.  A server is paid less by a company with the company assuming they will get tipped.  According to the U.S. Department of Labor, minimum wage for tipped workers in the state of Ohio is $4.05 whereas regular minimum wage is $8.10 because the money in tips will make up for the decrease in pay.


Other customers claim their servers take too long getting things ready or the customers did not get seated in an adequate amount of time.  Often when a server takes a while to get the food or drinks or even arrive to the table, it is not his/her fault.  A server cannot control how quickly the cooks can make the food; however, they are the scapegoats.  When it takes a while for customers to get a table, customers get frustrated and the tip lessens, even though the server had nothing to do with the wait for a table.


Also, customers will not give a tip if they claim their server acted rude or treated them unfairly.  While this is a good reason to decrease a tip because the service was not up-to-par, the server still deserves to be tipped.  There are many reasons servers can seem rude to their customers that have nothing to do with the customers themselves.  A server can be having a difficult time at home or had recently received a lecture from a manager.  “We are trained to not take our frustration at other things out on the customers,” Flores says.  “But it can be very hard to act like you aren’t angry or sad when you really are.”


Customers do deserve to be treated with respect and receive what they want because without the customers there would be no business and without business the economy would crumble; however, respect is a two-way street.  Customers and servers must respect one another to make a restaurant run.  Servers respect the customers by treating them fairly and customers respect the servers by doing the same.  Tipping is the most vital way a customer can display their respect for a server.

Photo courtesy of: tippingresearch.com (fair use)
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