Thank you for the tip


Dear Hillary,

Every business seems to have a tip box sitting there beside the cashier. Even the local cashier has one. I don’t mind tipping for a band playing in a pub, but whose next? The petrol station? I do give the girl who cleans my windshields whatever loose coins I have on me at the time, but that’s not a real “tip”. Restaurants seem to have had tipping for years, but now some places are adding in 10 percent tip in the bill, and then looking hopeful after that. I think it is now too much. What do you think.


Dear Alby,

Here’s how it goes – tips are actually earned by everyone in the restaurant. If the food is no good, there will be no tip. If the service is poor, there will be no tip. If the restaurant is dirty, there will be no tip. So if the diner wants to leave a tip, it should be shared by all the staff. However, if the diner thinks that the waitress has done a particularly good job and wants to reward her, then he should quietly give the tip directly to her, separate from anything left after paying the bill. Hope that makes it easy. In the case you mentioned, the staff should walk out. Where the 10 percent rule is in the bill, then I wouldn’t give another tip on top.

  • Robert

    If you try to get away with just a 10% tip in most places in the world you would be quickly trounced. You also have to look into the policy of the restaurant. Many places are now adding a 10% service charge….and it goes to the management. For myself it was easy. 7% was the VAT for restaurant food and I doubled it and rounded up and so should you.