Tipping Thread Appendix A (tipped wage discussion)

Tipping Thread Appendix A (tipped wage discussion)
  1. My answer to this is biased by the fact that I know people getting paid under the fed. min. wage when tips are included. I don’t think anyone should be paid under that number for an hour of work, and I’ve seen it happen firsthand in many different industries, food service included.

  2. My source is first hand, talking to Sonic Carhops in TX, but that was back in 2008. My current source is this: https://www.glassdoor.com/Hourly-Pay/Sonic-Hourly-Pay-E1303.htm

Which shows a range of $2-$11 for that position. The $11 are probably CA employees.

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Wow, if that is true, I feel bad because I’ve never tipped a Sonic Carhop since I started paying with a card. I am definitely going to ask next time I go to my local sonic.


I’m sure there are people who don’t want their own wages increased. I’'d assume they’re a small minority.

I found anecdotal references to people saying yes and no on this. Might depend on individual franchise policy and of course depends on state law too.

You would think, but that’s not the case.

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I agree with you on this.

I too believe those people exist. But if the majority of waiters are happy with the current pay scheme, is it possible that a better solution for those people (who are being paid under minimum wage even with tips) is to switch employers or even jobs rather than the state pass a law that negatively impacts the majority of people in that profession?

Never gave it much of a thought. But now i will tip less in states that pay min wage for waiters. Why not because im cheap and antisocial. Because its the right thing to do.

Right, if people get paid the same regardless of service, the long term trend is towards bad service because they do just enough to keep their job rather than trying to provide good service to get rewarded with tips. My experience with restaurant service in Europe was that it was much less good than in the US, and of course they were paid well but not at all on tips. This effect is even worse when you don’t have an alternative, like the DMV or the NHS in the U.K.

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A tipping thread is a sure traffic booster.

My issue with it isn’t really the money, as restaurant prices would surely be higher with service included. It’s with a system that allow stiffs or low tippers to be free riders on the rest of us. I’d rather everyone pay 15% rather than some people paying 25% while others tip 0%.


Remind me again, why am I cheap and antisocial for not tipping more when I order the $15 burger instead of the $10 burger?

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You forgot the part where they have 20+ of those $5 tickets per hour…


It is a pretty much free market labor system for waiters, except for the distortions based on race and gender, and social pressure to tip anyway for poor service.

The long term negative effect they are worried about is the end of a standard tip. There’s no way good waitstaff in decently busy restaurants will take home more as a fixed wage than they do now with a minimal wage plus tips.


That’s especially true st the high-end, where a fine dining server can make 50-75k/year.

Presumably, the nicer places would have to pay more for experienced servers, but I’ll bet it’ll be chaos at first.

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But the people making the tipped wages shouldnt be concerned about that; it just means they’ll be able to start being lazy without sacrificing money. The minimum wage, like all minimum wages, is pandering to the least common denominator. What tipped workers dont like about a higher minimum wage is that it inherently comes with a decrease in tipping standards, which long term will cost the high (and even middling) performers far more than the minimum wage increase adds.


But that still panders to the free riders on the other side of the equation.

I guess I’m one of those free riders, in that in visiting a restaurant, I add on a tip to cover the 15 minutes of the server’s time I’ve benefited from, regardless of what the bill happened to total. $5 is usually a nice round number, and plenty fair given the 5-6 other tables they’re handling at the same time. Of course, I’m more than willing to go beyond that, if the server goes beyond the basics as well. And, when often eating with young children, there can be a lot of special request details and a big mess left under the table, which inherently adds to the equation too.

However, I also have a stable of favorite wait staff at places we frequent regularly, who I make sure to tip excessively, often 30-40%. Even when I’m not at one of their tables, I just have to make eye contact across the room, and they’re over helping to resolve whatever issue I’m having.

Waiting tables will always be considered a minimum wage job. And like all “minimum wage jobs”, better employees do get paid more, but it’s still in the ballpark of minimum wage.

Yeah. We probably all think different things when you say restaurant. I live in New Orleans and either eat at a fine dining place @ 20% tip or at a quick service place @ 0%. I certainly don’t have a random sample of waitstaff based on where I eat and servers/bartenders I know.

There is a wide variation in their comp tho.

A few months ago I ate at a high end restaurant and had horrible service from our waiter. When I finally got the bill a 20% tip was included on the bill. Then I knew why the service was sooo bad.


Yeah sorry I don’t exactly trust the WSJ as an unbiased source on this topic.

They do cite a poll that waitstaf overwhelmingly wants to keep the tipping system. But thats not the same as not wanting wages increased.

I do see opposition to the intitiave in question but I don’t see much of anything substantiating what % of the waitstaff themselves really oppose it. Also I see there was a heavily funded campaign against the intiative with employers spreading misinformation and influencing their workers against it.

“Bartenders and servers who spoke to ThinkProgress said they support the ballot measure because they want to have a more consistent income and feel less susceptible to putting up with harassment”
Still anecdotal but no worse that the WSJ.

DC’s initiative is not typical though since it would be a net increase of ~$10-12/hr over 5-6 years. Thats a whopping big increase and I can certainly see that would have a significant impact.