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Tipping Out of Control

American tipping culture is a problem
Kaydence Cain
Tip left on a table after eating at a restaurant.

Have you ever felt pressured to leave a tip? Leaving a tip is a nice gesture, but it is simply getting out of control. Even if someone leaves a tip people still complain about it.
Tipping, also known as gratuity, is an amount that a customer leaves for a service worker based on the price of the service.
I understand tipping at restaurants or for a taxi ride. Why are we tipping for fast food, drive-throughs, coffee shops, etc? People would have never thought to tip these places before. Yes, tipping is optional, but it sure does not feel like it.
It also used to be acceptable to tip 15%, but now people are being pressured to tip 20%.
“If you go to get a coffee or pick up a takeout order, for example, an electronic screen will almost certainly get swiveled in your direction, asking if you want to add a 20%, 25% or 30% tip,” writes Arwa Mahdawi from The Guardian
Some may say that others do not care and do not even leave a tip. The employees can get upset by this because they work hard to serve their customers.
Consumers might feel the opposite, that the tipping is too much and maybe feel the service was not good enough for them to tip. This is not very fair because servers should still get tipped in some capacity, but other “nonservice” places asking for a tip is too much.
According to The Poached Press, Americans learned about tipping during the 1860’s from European Immigrants. Tipping forms have changed since then, due to technology. The percentages have also gone up with inflation.
This problem started happening after the Covid-19 pandemic and is progressively getting worse.
“Tip-per-order was decreasing over time before the Coronavirus emergency declaration. After the declaration, tip-per-order increased by US$1.24, and the previous negative trend was eliminated,” says the National Institutes of Health
With the tipping going up, it could make people not want to go out as much.
When a customer makes a purchase where the employees are already paid at least minimum wage, the screen still prompts them to pay a tip. To make matters worse, the tip percentages are displayed larger than the “no tip” option. This makes people feel guilty if they choose no tip. People should not be feeling like this after buying something.
Some people think that servers or workers are not getting paid enough.
“I think it is becoming an issue because some people just don’t tip and that’s not fair to the servers and the front of house people who are splitting tips.” says Kayla Velegol
This is true; however, consumers should not have to worry about the servers getting enough money to live. The consumer also has their own life to live and might not have enough money to leave a big tip.
In some countries tipping is not expected. Even in some countries it is frowned upon if you leave a tip!
This is turning into a serious problem in America. I think that the employers should pay their workers more because their wages are not livable without tips.
To help this problem a law can be made, so that the employers must pay their worker’s minimum wage.


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About the Contributor
Kaydence Cain
Kaydence Cain, Staff member
My name is Kaydence Cain, I am a freshman and this is my first year on WSM. I have learned a lot about journalism and plan to learn more. I hope to gain more knowledge and skills in journalism to make my work better. I am a part of Varsity Weir High Swim Team, Follansbee Swim Team, and Girls Athletic Association. I like to train at the gym and accomplished benching 135 pounds. In the future I plan to go to college and become a nurse practitioner. As well as traveling the world. I put as much effort as I can into my sport and school.
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