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Thread: When to Tip or Not

  1. #1
    Senior Member
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    When to Tip or Not

    When settling the bill after brunch with wife and daughter my thoughts went to server tips. Normally in a sit down (crip humor?) restaurant I tip 20 percent for service. I do not pay a tip on the tax applied to the bill as it has nothing to with the meal and/or service. I know, I know it's a piddling sum, but it is a tax and there is no reasonable thought process dictating the tax deserves a gratuity. On matters concerning tips for service offered to folks with a disability do you tip persons who do something to make your shopping experience more pleasurable? For instance, a store employee assists by toting your packages to your car--do you commonly tip for the extra service? I attempt, however, some businesses have a no tip policy.
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  2. #2
    In the USA, I have always calculated the tip in a restaurant based on the pre-tax total bill. Normally I pay 18%; reserving 20% for exceptional service. Many restaurants add the tip automatically for a large group (often 6 or more) even if paying separately, so it is important to check the bill carefully before paying. Also, in California many restaurants have added a 3% fee, justifying it as their added costs for increased state-mandated minimum wages for restaurant workers. I don't include that in my tip calculations either. I don't understand why they don't just raise their prices instead of doing this, and it pisses me off.

    When I was a caregiver for my mother, we did not tip for business accommodations for her disability (since those are required by law) but did tip for things such as Skycap services, portage at cruise ship terminals, and the personnel at airports who excorted us through TSA, customs/immigration, etc., often pushing the wheelchair as well.

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  3. #3
    The rule of thumb I go by is that I only tip for things that regular people tip for. I've never used skycap services or been on a cruise ship, but I expect that AB people also tip for those services.

    I disagree with tipping personnel who escort someone through customs, unless you requested that service and it's not really a necessity. For example in Paris I had a fairly tight layover (2 hours and we had to go through security again and customs). Some poor Parisian girl guided us through the airport, basically refused to let me fend for myself as I normally would, and turned out to be useful because the accessible route was often down obscure unmarked hallways or through elevators that require a keycard. I didn't tip because the disorganization of Charles De Gaulle was what necessitated her services and the route was inaccessible without a minder. Also in Detroit they mistakenly sent my tilite on through to baggage claim even though it was marked to be brought to me for disembarkation. This time some poor deroiter had to push me in a terrible wheelchair that was not made for self powered individuals. Not tipping him either.

    I think that especially when traveling tipping for services that are apply to only disabled persons sets a bad precedent. Travel is an absolute necessity for people, and creating a culture that encourages tipping for necessary services (as tipping in the above situations would be imo) is not only distasteful, but also makes life more difficult for those who come after you who will have to cough up extra cash. Lord knows as a group disabled people aren't short of expensive things that are indispensable to us already... No need to inflate the price.

    Also I would never tip extra for an uber driver to break down my chair and stow it or for a grocery store employee to grab something high off a shelf for me. If I asked someone to bring my groceries out to my car for me, I might tip them (no experience with this, so idk) if it was standard for AB moms who are busy wrangling four kids to tip as well. If they offer to takes stuff out to my car I almost always decline, unless it's clear they're going to be insistent as I can do it myself, but if I do take them up on the offer I don't ever consider tipping. And if I was physically unable to take the groceries out to the car I would strongly consider not tipping even if that is customary.

    For sure it's a super entitled stances, but the way I see it (especially in the US with the ADA) the inaccessibility of my physical environment is not a good enough reason for me to fork over money to employees of the inaccessible business.

    So basically if you tip the mexican hotel employee who helps wheel you down the hotel's ramp that is too steep or tip the people who push you down the aisle on the airplane, it really pisses me off when I see it... which kind of makes me sound like a bitter old man, but at least I spent multiple paragraphs trying to justify my bitterness.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by funklab View Post

    So basically if you tip the mexican hotel employee who helps wheel you down the hotel's ramp that is too steep or tip the people who push you down the aisle on the airplane, it really pisses me off when I see it... which kind of makes me sound like a bitter old man, but at least I spent multiple paragraphs trying to justify my bitterness.



    I tip as the spirit moves me and according to convenience. There are several local shops I buy from that give me curbside service. I call with my order and they bring it out. I tell them to keep whatever change there is from bigger bills, and ought to keep more singles in my wallet. These are the sort of food shops that put a tip jar on the counter. One on-line vendor I love, Avitals Apiaries, sells soaps and a variety of personal care products made with natural oils and beeswax. To show my admiration for their products I hand them out as Christmas presents. Often I do not tip enough, due to a lifelong self-image of being poor. When my dad passed on he left me some money, so I sent off a few checks to people who had given me steep discounts on medical care many years ago. I do have a sense of fairness, just sometimes it takes a while for it to kick in.

    My usual grocer has a store policy that we should not tip their people for help to the car, which I use when I have more than one bag to take out. They do not want $ to be a factor in whether we ask for help.
    Last edited by Tetracyclone; 12-02-2019 at 11:42 PM.

  5. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by Tetracyclone View Post
    My usual grocer has a store policy that we should not tip their people for help to the car, which I use when I have more than one bag to take out. They do not want $ to be a factor in whether we ask for help.
    Same at Trader Joe's. The employees there will help carry things to my car, which I need when I have more than one basketful of things, and there's never an expectation of a tip. I'd like to think that it's for the reason you cited: money shouldn't be a disincentive, or a source of potential shame, for those that need assistance.

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