Thursday, November 15, 2007

Do you tip?


What is it w/ tipping in this country? Most restaurants that you go to have a service charge included, but I doubt seriously if the waiters and waitresses are seeing any of that money. So, where does that leave a person when it comes to giving a tip?

Do most ppl not tip in restaurants? How about your hair dresser? What about at hotels?

I know that my husband doesn't like to tip in most cases. Coming from the States where tipping is required, I usually cringe when he refuses to leave anything after a good meal.

In many restaurants in the States, you'll have the wait staff actually come after you if you don't leave a tip. I've known ppl to scream at their customers for not giving at least 15%, and you'd never think of not tipping your hairdresser, unless they were the owner of the salon, but, even still, I've always felt weird about not tipping - even if they're the owner.

My hair stylist, Kristin, worked at a place in Dallas; she wasn't the owner, but she rented out the space she had in the place, which is considered to be pretty much the same. I spent over $100 most times - if I dyed my hair - and I always left a tip. Thankfully those hair days are over and I'm not paying anywhere near that now, but I still feel odd if I leave and don't tip. I even feel bad if I don't tip the shampoo girl... seeing that she gives fabulous scalp massages every time she puts the conditioner on my hair. I'd actually love to hire someone like that to be my personal scalp masseuse.

Now... let's say you do tip... do you tip a standard percentage or just whatever you feel like? In most places back home, if you leave anything under 20%, you're considered stingy. I've known ppl to leave a few cents, and I mean pennies, after a meal.. but the service was terrible and the place wasn't a big place or anything... but even still, I think I'd rather leave nothing than leave a few pennies.

A few restaurants that we go to on a regular basis even charges a service charge if we pick up the meal and go, which I think is strange and not really fair. Hashim has complained and one place close to us doesn't do it anymore, but if we sit down inside, we get the charge. I don't agree w/ service charges. I can understand if you have a huge party, but if it's only you and your husband, why the service charge?

And w/ the rise in food prices at restaurants after the Ramadan holiday, I'm starting to think like my husband... maybe it's better to save that extra cash. I guess that's why us Americans are always hard up for cash... we're too busy tipping all of our money away!

16 comments:

ammaro.com said...

the whole concept of tipping is pretty funy... watch the beginning of reservoir dogs... classic

anyway; in the States, tipping is a must, pretty much because waiters get next to nothing (min wage) and hardly enough to survive. and the concept of tipping spread to cabs, hairdressers, and so on.

here, you dont need to tip. its not generally considered as a something that people do; ie, the price on the menu is the price you pay. and yes, the service charge is taken by the restaurant owner probably.

when you do tip, you get whoever is serving you to do a better job for you, but they end up resenting anyone who doesnt leave a tip. its anti-productive here, because most people dont do it, so the few who do screw it up for everyone else :p

The Moody Minstrel said...

Tipping is not generally done in Asian countries, either. It has apparently caught on to a verrrrry tiny extent here in Japan, apparently, but I've heard that tipping in China or Korea can be seen as an insult!

I tipped waiters, room maid service, bellboys, and taxi drivers when I was in Australia and got strange looks and "Are you sure?" from all of them, so I guess tipping isn't common there, either. That's surprising since tipping is expected in the U.K..

As for tipping only a few pennies, there is sound reasoning behind it. If you leave no tip, then you, the customer, look bad. However, if you leave an obviously tiny tip, the person you are tipping looks bad. For the record, I got really upset at the obnoxious and inattentive waitress I had at one restaurant in the States about ten years ago, and I left her a 1 yen tip. Yes, you read that right. Not one cent, one yen. I'm sure the stupid creature loved that.

Lulwa said...

That has always been a dilemma for me. When I look at the bill and see that they've charged me for service, I wonder whether I should leave a tip. And often when I'm out with friends, and bill arrives, I always have to ask what has become the inevitable question, 'shall we leave a tip?'
I agree with ammaro (i seem to agree with so many souls today) and I usually go with my instincts. If I was happy with the service, I'll tip them regardless. It's a tricky business, this whole tipping thing.

Yacoub said...

I always leave a tip, and that tip would be basically any loose change from the bill so in most cases it won't be more than a dinar, if the loose change is only 25 fils or something I would add a few hundred fils or any change in my wallet.

Only in one occassion would I pay more than a dinar would be if the waiter is Bahraini

Hasan said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Jahooni said...

Everything here is so expensive.... and then you have to leave a TIP! no wonder why i am always poor...

Olivia said...

Funny, this was discussed on the BBC Breakfast program yesterday morning!

A lot of places in London add 12.5%. If I tip here, it is usually about 10%. I'm not minted, and often service is poor, but it's beginning to improve. It has to, since waitstaff make half their earnings through tips.
On the other hand, a tip jar at a place where you take your stuff and go, what's the point of that?

Can anyone tell us what TIP means?

Gardens of Sand said...

In the States I usually tip between 15-20%. I tip a whole lot less if the service is poor AND the waiter was rude. In Bahrain, I tip at the salons and housekeeping, laborers too. I do not tip waiters. I dunno, I always felt that they would be offended, esp if they are Bahraini.

leen said...

hi.actually im not commenting at this subject,i just wanna ask u favour:i noticed that u r 1 of loulou's freind RENDERINGS OF ME,can u please tell her that there's a programme called LOWRATE VOIP,i use it to call my familly and its almost free so she can call her husband plz send her the msg cause i tried to comment at her blog but couldn't.thank u,

leen said...

hi,just wanted to thank u for sending my msg to loulou and no im not a freind to her im just a regular reader of her blog just wanted to help her.thanks again.

Um Naief said...

leen, no prob.

moody, she probably thought, "why in the hell did this guy leave me a yin... where is that from!!" hehehe

olivia, i'm looking up TIP.. i'll see if i can find anything. i will say that when i was in london, we always got really poor service, but we never tipped. they were also very rude... but i thought maybe it was because we were foreigners.

hmmm.. i guess i've been expecting hubby to do the wrong thing. one restaurant we go to frequently, well, we've been tipping there for a while. i would feel odd if we just stopped, but little by little, hashim has been doing that.

the thing that gets me about tipping here is that all these places add a service charge. if i'm not mistaken, in the states, you only get that if your party has more than 10 ppl or some such, but i could be mistaken. to me, they do it here just for greed. and that really irritates the crap outta me!

i think i'll continue to tip my hairdresser and the girl that washes my hair - oh and when i have my nails and such done, i tip them, but other than that, i think i won't give hashim such a hard time in the future!

thanks everyone... loved your comments!!

Um Naief said...

olivia, i found this on the word "tip" at wikipedia. or actually, here's the link... if anyone's interested.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tip

Olivia said...

Ah, I wondered if anyone knew without looking it up. (To Insure Promptness.) I will read the article in a minute to see if that's right.

Bistro is another one. When the Russians were in France in the previous century, they would go to cafes and shout "bistro" meaning "quickly" and that's why bistros are supposedly fast food. I'll look that up too to see if it's still the accepted version.

Olivia said...

Woot - I was wrong on TIP but right on Bistro, except by last century I meant 19th...

Gazza said...

Being a taxi driver i tip everyone,ppl thing its weird i tip the guy in the petrol station,i find it weird if i pick up bar staff or hair dresser staff who dont tip ?

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