The [BLANK] Jones: Tipping

It’s the summer. There’s an NBA lockout. We’re bored as hell and we’re not going to take it anymore!

Welcome to The [BLANK] Jones …

On today’s show we discuss tipping. Why do we do it? No, seriously, we want to know? If you feel OK rewarding a waiter for good service, are you equally comfortable punishing them for bad service? Should you tip a dry cleaner? Does the very fact that tips are expected defeat their purpose? What’s more nerve wracking, tipping in a hotel or in a stripclub? Join us as we contemplate these questions and more without actually giving any answers.

Tips encouraged!


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Comments (28)

  1. As a bartender, if you get a drink from me and don’t tip, I’m not gonna worry about noticing you next time you need a drink. And the reason you tip more for a $500 bottle wine vs. a $30 bottle is because the server will “tip out” to house 5% of the bill regardless of the tip they receive. So if you give $10 tip on both bottles one server walks with a majority of that $10 and the other one gets nothing.

  2. Skeets, you should most definitely tip your tattoo artist. They’re like stylists – they generally rent their chair in the store, and you tend to find an artist you want a friendly relationship with. However, learn what your artist’s interests are. I find many tattoo artists are thrilled more when people bring them a book or an album than cash (though they like that too), especially because these are creative people who’s job it is to talk for a few hours to other people. And, it just makes sense to ingratiate yourself to your tattoo artist, for hopefully very obvious reasons.

  3. Also, unless you’re just walking into a tattoo parlor and pointing at a design on a whim (which is stupid), a tattoo artist generally spends their spare time, about a week or so, tweaking the design, finding out ways of making look as good as possible, and consulting the client.

  4. You guys wondered what constitutes bad service from a cabbie. On top of being a shitty/dangerous driver, two things that I have encountered are frustrating are the overly-cautious driver that will not make any effort to get through an intersection on a yellow light and the guy that comes to a block-long rolling stop in an effort to get that last click (it’s $0.40 every ~5 blocks in NYC) on the meter.

  5. I’ve lived in South Korea and Taiwan where tipping is not expected, and I’ve found that service is generally better, with much less phoniness.

  6. I worked at Tim Hortens during college and yes, we did get tips.

  7. Listen to that Planet Money podcast in the first comment. Great episode.

  8. Absolutely tip your tattoo artist. And pizza guy like whoa.

  9. Depending on restaurant size, 6 or more is usually an inconvenience , both for front and back of the house. Thus, gratuity. And in America, it’s 18% grat. If they put a 20%, you are being fucked with.

  10. Tip your tattoo artist with pizza and vice versa.

  11. Never tip!
    I, myself, given the opportunity would bring the food from the kitchen myself. The service is making the food, the rest is accessory.

    If a person is getting less than minimum wage that is not my problem. They should be getting a fair wage. That would probably raise the prices and we would be paying the same, except with more professionalism and less awkwardness.

  12. ^ The person gets less than minimum wage because tips are expected to make up the difference but if the tips don’t make up the difference I think that the employers are required to pay the difference by law, no one is should be making below minimum wage.

  13. Cable guy is in my apartment now on a service call because the box is broken. Do I tip? Please help. Quick!


  15. I hate those Take Out Restaurants that have a Tip Line:______ on the credit card receipt before my total. A little awkward having to write “0″…

  16. The concept Skeets described of putting cash on the table at the start of a meal and then adding or subtracting money based on the service was portrayed in a 3rd Rock From The Sun episode. That’s probably what he was thinking of.

  17. You tip more when you pay more because it is probably assumed that you have a larger disposable income. If you’re paying for a $500 bottle of wine, the presumption is you are wealthy or are in quite a spending mood that evening.

  18. My sister works at Tim Horton’s and she gets butt loads of tips… she has a huge jar constantly packed with money from only her tips. Now I disagree with this because people who work at McD’s or Burger King don’t get tipped. Why is that?

    P.S. Congratulations on your wedding Tas!

  19. Tipping is a lie. No ones gets less than minimum wage (at least they shouldn’t by law). Charge more if you want more. What makes waiting tables so worthy of higher pay compared to other minimum wage jobs. Give it to a charity instead!

  20. The delivery charge on a pizza bill doesn’t go to the driver, it pays for the pizza place’s insurance. However, some restaurants do compensate their drivers for gas. Delivery drivers often leave the store with 2-4 orders, especially in more densely populated areas, so if you order frequently your driver will tend to remember if you’re an especially good or bad tipper and may deliver your order before/after others based on that knowledge.

  21. i delivered pizzas when i was at university. being in australia, i got a decent tip from maybe 1 out of every 4 or 5 deliveries, and the hourly and per-delivery pay was pretty shit.

    we also tended to have lots of deals that ended in 95 cents. the number of times i delivered a $19.95 deal, was handed a $20 and told to “keep the change”….i eventually refused to accept those tips, and forced the customer to take their 5 cents change, going as far as to leave it on their doorstep if they refused to take it back.

  22. Firstly the “Service Industry” is a huge oxymoron.

    I don’t tip bar staff on the basis of skill of drink, unless it’s a decent drink.
    It’s about your enjoyment of the drink, so how would you know if it’s good if you haven’t had it yet?
    Do you drink some then tip? If so, that’s bullshit.

    As for popping a cap on a beer, then you are tipping on a mix of the quality of the establishment and also service. (So they’ll serve you again quickly next time they see you)

    Most bars here have tip jars and it’s usually full of what ever is left over after a note is used or whenever some drunk idiot turns around to talk to his friend and ignores to say thanks or nod or that he’s overpaid. We call that the “Subconscious Tip”. We tip ourselves for their lack of politeness. So, it works both ways.

    Only time tips happen besides the jar (which the barstaff spilt) really are if there’s a bar tab and when people sign off. Seeing things in writing make people guilty.
    I think it’s about acknowledging service, that’s it. (Australians don’t overly care)

    And as a dj I’ve been tipped, but not in money.

  23. split not spilt, clearly a freudian slip.

  24. Plenty of states in the US (mostly California, because that’s where I am) don’t have the tip credit law, meaning that servers get min. wage every damn time.

    I tip, but I think the whole damn thing is flawed. Why do servers get a 15% premium over other unskilled employees? Like someone said above, I’d be happy to give my order to the kitchen and go pick it up. I’d also be perfectly happy to walk over to the bar and wait to get a drink, because it’s probably faster that way. And so I shouldn’t tip unless I feel like I got service above par.

    And yet I still can’t not tip at least 15%. It’s pathological now.

  25. In Europe (where I live, at least), service is always included, so you supposedly only leave one for above par service, but it’s still guilt-based, and most people tip as long as it’s not horrible serice.
    btw, from what I could see in my brief stay in the US, service is actually better in Europe (in restaurants).

    Only drunk guys who talk to the barman/maid for 2 hours should tip them. Other than that they’re just doing their job, and it’s not as terrible as actually being a waiter.

    I don’t think hairdressers pay for their chair where I live, they are regular employees.

    Taxi drivers don’t get much tips around here, prolly because they are so pricey: it’s ~5$ just for entering the damn car! I believe old people with luggage or grocery they have brought to their doors should tip, but that’s it.

  26. I refuse to tip people, I am a university student and I got a mess load of student loans, and im in no financial position to tip anyone. Maby if i was not in debt i would reconcider but 99% of the time i will not tip.

  27. Went to Alaska vacation, took numerous shuttles, tipped my ass off. Ate at burger joint, attractive waitress put hearts on bill, noticed her trick, tipped her regular. Ate at Asian place, left no tip, Asian lady mouthed off a bit. No tats = pussies, jk. Men W/o Hats!

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