On Saturday, Waiterrant published a letter to British Prime Minister Gordon Brown from a disgruntled server in North Carolina, calling on the British government to better educate its citizens on U.S. tipping customs.
Mr. Brown, I urge you, if only for decency’s sake, to inform your citizens, before travelling abroad to the United States, that while dining out in a restaurant where waiters take orders and serve food, that the tip is not compulsory, but mandatory, the amount of which is meant as a level of satisfaction of service provided. Excellent service is rewarded in excess of 20% of the total cheque amount, for example, a $100 meal with excellent service deserves a $20 (or greater) tip. Average service requires a 15% tip, and poor service can be indicated with a 10% tip. Under no circumstances is it acceptable to “stiff”, or simply not tip, a waiter in America, or leave a tip under 10% (with the exception of absolutely abysmal service).
We’ve found no word on an official British response yet (and are not holding our breath), but it did spark our curiosity regarding servers’ recourse to poor-tipping customers. Usually there is very little, but we found a website in which servers post the names and gratuity amounts of less-than-satisfactory customers in a “Shitty Tipper Database.” We had to laugh, working, as we do, for one of many sites that basically give customers a forum to complain about servers, but not the other way around. Turns out the internet has more than one side. Who knew?
Dear Prime Minister, [Waiterrant]
The Shitty Tipper Database [Bitterwaitress]
[Photo: Via bmfriz/flickr]