The Fort Bend Foodie 03/05/14
Restaurant étiquette – Gratitude or attitude?
One thing sure to send a message about the dining experience of a patron, and probably the most contentious aspect of restaurant etiquette is the tip – otherwise know as gratuity. Expectations on this topic are never the same and purely subjective. The hourly rate waiters & waitresses receive is a small fraction of other staff members.
They depend on 90% of their tips for income and in most cases have to share their tips with bus staff, hostesses, bartenders, and food runners. It is in their best interest to make sure you have a pleasant and satisfying experience. We all have good and bad days, however, and sometimes that just doesn’t happen.
So here are some guidelines to follow:
If you are extremely pleased with the service, tip 20% – 25% of the total bill. If the service was satisfactory, tip 15% – 20%. If it was unsatisfactory, tip 10% of the total. Only in extreme cases should a tip be withheld completely. If this occurs, the management should be informed about the incident before you leave.
When you have multiple servers such as waiter, wine steward, bartender, coat check-in, etc., the waiter should get 15% – 20% of the total food bill (before any coupons or gift cards are taken off), wine steward – 15% of the wine bill, bartender – 10% – 15% of the bar tab, coat check clerk – $1.00 per coat. and a car attendant – $2.00 – $5.00.
Do you tip at a buffet? Absolutely, and at the same rate as previously mentioned. The waiter still has to bring you drinks and anything you might have forgotten to get in the line, as well as clean away twice as many dishes.
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