Tipping: No Balance of Power

When I was growing up, the general rate for tipping at restaurants was 10%. Then, it became 10-15%, then 15%, then 15-20%, then 20%. While this increase was occurring, tipping became much more widespread. I do not remember seeing tips jars when I was young; certainly, there were not nearly as many as there are today.

You know what? I don’t like it.

Over time, the argument has become that one should tip regardless of the service.

Tips have changed from a reward for exceptional service to an entitlement. One newsgroup that I was following several years back had people frequently justifying giving lesser service to people because they probably would not tip well. A self-fulfilling and self-serving prophecy.

I have heard the arguments. I am not convinced. I understand that in some states of the U.S.A., the employer can pay less than minimum wage because the employee can make tips. I live in British Columbia where this is not legal. Nonetheless, the tip rate is about the same. I think of it as getting gouged.

I eat out a lot less than I might otherwise because of the money-grubbing.