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ExpatSingapore Message Board 27 July 2014, 1:12:19 AM *
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Author Topic: To Tip or not to Tip?  (Read 5665 times)
orangie
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« on: 11 January 2002, 11:50:00 AM »

The question is to tip or not to tip?

On a recent visit back to Australia, I noticed that in restaurants it has almost become the norm to tip. People expect it.

Now, I understand in places such as the US, because of the low wages, it is the norm to tip. This is OK. Also, this is not only restricted to waiters. Tipping is common for bar men, pizza delivery boys and girls and so on.

My issue is, in Australia we have minimum wages. Why do the waiters and waitresses get a special treatment? Why don't the cashiers at supermarket deserve to get a tip like the waiters do?

In Singapore, the waiters don't particularly get paid less than other professions either. So, why the extra 10% surcharge in a restaurant. Do the waiters actually get the money?

In Asia, because you are foreigner, people expect you to pay a tip. Taxis, bell boys, waiters ... If you don't they give you THE LOOK!

A comment was made on another thread about Australians not tipping when visiting Asian countries. Why should they?

I don't get a tip in my office job. I get a salary just like everybody else. A level of performance is expected. In a restaurant also, a level of service is expected. You pay for your meal which includes the restaurant's overheards. Why pay extra for good service when it should be offered either way. It is called customer service.

What are people's thoughts on this?

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Fat Bob
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« Reply #1 on: 11 January 2002, 13:06:00 PM »

The 10% service charge does not get paid to the waiters, it goes into the restauranters pocket.

So do I tip waiters? No, because of the 10% charge.

Do I tip taxi drivers? yes, I always make it up to the nearest dollar because I hate loose change in my poket.

Do I tip bell boys? No, I carry my own bags.

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Lucky
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« Reply #2 on: 18 January 2002, 11:11:00 AM »

Orangie,

Actually, there is a minimum wage in the US.  So when waiters and waitresses receive a tip it is on top of what they get paid as an hourly wage.

The way I see it, the tip is used as an indication of whether or not the service was good.  If they care, waiters can gauge how well they do by the tips they get.

I think that good service deserves a little something extra -- waiting tables is not an easy job.

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Joseph27
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« Reply #3 on: 18 January 2002, 17:52:00 PM »

In Australia I sometimes give a tip - only if the service totally impresses me.  If however the waiter is rude - there is no way I give that bit extra. Same in the states - people get mightly miffed with you when you ignore the tip section on your credit card payment but personally I give in accordance with what I get.

As for Singapore - I have given up on service - but for that matter - if I ever want to be totally pissed off by rude incompetent people I would surely pay a visit to swensons.  Any they charge the 10%. Totally sux for everything that place

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"truth is a group of metaphors, metonyms, and anthropomorphisms; a sum of human relation which is poetically and rhetorically intensified, metamorphosed and adored so that after a long time it is then codified in the binding canon."
Joseph27
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« Reply #4 on: 18 January 2002, 17:53:00 PM »

In Australia I sometimes give a tip - only if the service totally impresses me.  If however the waiter is rude - there is no way I give that bit extra. Same in the states - people get mightly miffed with you when you ignore the tip section on your credit card payment but personally I give in accordance with what I get.

As for Singapore - I have given up on service - but for that matter - if I ever want to be totally pissed off by rude incompetent people I would surely pay a visit to swensons.  Any they charge the 10%. Totally sux for everything that place

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"truth is a group of metaphors, metonyms, and anthropomorphisms; a sum of human relation which is poetically and rhetorically intensified, metamorphosed and adored so that after a long time it is then codified in the binding canon."
nualum
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« Reply #5 on: 19 January 2002, 1:52:00 AM »

About the minimum wage in the US . . . Certain occupations are exempted from it, and I believe that is the case with waiters and waitresses. I believe the common custom is for them to get a nominal hourly wage, which is less than the minimum for other workers, and tips boost their wages, presumably above the minimum.

Taxi drivers there, as is the case in Singapore, are independent contractors. They rent the taxi for the day. They don't make a dime till the fares exceed the day's rental.

Both of these are hard jobs and not well paid. While I don't like the system at all, I know that if I don't tip them, they won't even make minimum wages. And I don't know how anyone can live on minimum wage. Given that system, I give the standard tip for acceptable service--the standard being about 15%.

I don't, however, tip in Singapore because I believe it is  not the done thing. Sometimes, though, I wonder if I am correct.  

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maxthecat
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« Reply #6 on: 19 January 2002, 7:31:00 AM »

Waiting tables is hard work.  I've done it.  I always leave a 15% tip unless the service was inexcusably bad.  I usually leave 20% and up for good or excellent service, especially for those who are older and might have children they're supporting.

Like I said, it's hard work, but I always prided myself in giving everyone the best possible service I could -- even during very trying circumstances, so I'd expect the same when I go out to eat.

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Lucky
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« Reply #7 on: 19 January 2002, 8:30:00 AM »

nualum: you are right ... I forgot that waiters and waitresses make beans as a base wage.   my bad  

and (In the US) I follow pretty much the same tipping scheme as maxthecat.  i am new to singapore but i think that with the servicecharge i may not tip extra.  i don't want to make the locals angry, as it is my understanding that they don't tip

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Fat Bob
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« Reply #8 on: 21 January 2002, 10:53:00 AM »

As I said before, I don't tip in Singapore for waiters etc as there is a 10% service charge.

One point of issue, because the tipping is done directly to the waiter, many times the chefs and others don't get a share. OK, this might not be the case in the US, but in Singapore, as tipping is not the norm, does the waiter just keep it to themselves? I don't know, but I always think the restaurant as a whole has made the good service, and not just the waiter.

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Faraway
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« Reply #9 on: 22 January 2002, 13:02:00 PM »

I totally agree with Joseph27.I think Swensons would get a gold medal on the rude service(Probably it would go into Guinness Book of records if they investigate)The waiters are extremely rude,snobbish and foul mouthed and lazy but I am not a local who can take such attitudes.I complain to managers everytime I receive bad service.Once I complained and chided all the staff including managers and assistant managers for swearing after me.But hey it is not only Swensons, it is all over the restaurant and so called hospitality sector that has bad service.(I think it has something to do with their wages)Can we change it by complaining?
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Not there yet
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« Reply #10 on: 24 January 2002, 5:47:00 AM »

in the US, the waiters and waitresses do not get paid very well, as far as the fixed salary is concerned (even if there is a minimum wage).That's the reason why you are supposed to leave a tip. Still, the amount you leave is supposed to depend on the quality of the service. In NYC, 10% is the minimum you can tip, and it usually is 15% for a good service, up to 20%. And I think they share the tip with the rest of the staff.
For taxi cabs, the same rule applye, except that the service usually sucks and you can get remarks if they find your tip too small.

In France, on the other hand, there is allready a tax included in the price, so you don't have to tip. I would tend to think it should be like that in Singapore.

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