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The “Tipping” Controversy

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Do you know how much you should you tip when you’re at a restaurant? Are you supposed to tip the pizza delivery driver on top of the delivery fee that’s already been applied? What about your mechanic? To better understand how, who and when to tip, it helps to understand the background and history of tipping.

The culture and practice of tipping has been around for centuries and dates all the way back to the 14th Century. However, historians believe that tipping may have originated in the taverns of 17th Century England where a small present of money was gifted for prompt service. In the United States, it is believed that tipping began just after the American Civil War in the late 1800’s when wealthy Americans vacationed in England and brought the tradition of tipping back home with them. Then, in 1909, anti-tipping laws were established within 6 states but soon met its fate and was repealed in 1926.

Even though these laws were passed and repealed years ago, the controversy of tipping is still around today. So, here are a few tips for you:

At a Restaurant:  The amount of tip given should reflect the service that was received. But remember, these restaurant employees who run around trying to make sure that your experience is perfect, really have to put in the work. Most of the time, when something is wrong with your food order, it’s not their fault. Sometimes the kitchen makes the mistakes and the servers are the ones hung out to dry. Just remember, the servers make majority of their living off of tips from their customers.

At the Oil Shop: I’m going to assume that you have probably gotten your oil changed at Jiffy Lube, Firestone, etc. Most of the time, a car wash, quick vacuum and window wipe down is included in the oil change service. I always make sure the tip the worker a few dollars for providing this ‘extra’ service. Not only do they appreciate it but if you go to the same place over and over again, the workers will start to remember your generosity and tend to go above and beyond when you do come in.

Delivery Drivers: We’ve all thought it before – some of the delivery fees companies charge seem a little outrageous – plus you’re supposed to tip the driver on top of that?! However, in most cases, the delivery fee does not actually make it into the pocket of the delivery drivers. It’s a fee paid to the restaurant for providing such a service. Always be sure to tip your delivery driver so you don’t make it onto the black-list of your favorite ordering-in joint.

These are just a few examples of who and when to tip. But remember not to forget about your hair stylist, transportation driver, bellhop, barista; the list goes on.

When it comes to tipping, I was always raised to tip someone who is providing good service. Always try to remember that the young kid waiting tables, or the woman cutting your hair are doing their best to make a living. And tipping or not tipping can truly make a difference in their life.

See you next week!

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