Customary Tipping at Breweries Has Become Ridiculous

Discussion in 'Beer Talk' started by HOP_KING, Nov 30, 2018.

  1. HOP_KING

    HOP_KING Initiate (112) Jan 30, 2013 Illinois

    I thought I'd come on here to ask and to vent, seeing as it's happened to me not once but twice in a just a few weeks. Both at very highly regarded breweries in the Chicagoland area.

    The ipad / tablet touch screens where you pay and sign pull up gratuity of 15/20/25%. To me these are excessive, certainly the 20+.

    Compared to a restaurant where there are numerous servers serving you, cleaning your table, bringing you food, not to mention the cooks cooking the food on the spot. I tip 20-25% after tax regularly with no issue. In addition many will say don't tip that much on the alcohol sales.

    But at a bar or brewery I usually tip around 10% for just drinks, maybe a bit more. It's different.

    So both times instead of pushing the button that's in your face almost forcing you to tip high, I custom tip. Both times I custom tip at around 10%. Both times the lady flips the screen, looks at it, doesn't even acknowledge me with no thank you and walks off.

    That's BS. Do others have this issue? What do you guys tip at brewpubs for drinks only???
     
  2. AZBeerDude72

    AZBeerDude72 Meyvn (1,397) Jun 10, 2016 Arizona
    Premium Trader

    LOL I was dealing with this very thing at two of my favorite coffee shops. I go to get fresh beans so zero work by them, just grab bag, pay, leave. They use the same tablets and you have these outrageous tip options and if you fail to take one they give you a sour face and zero goodbye. I am firm on tipping when I get a service, you make me a drink or coffee you get a tip but I am not tipping on this. Same when I get cans from brewery. I get the cans, walk them to counter, pay, why am I tipping on this????
    The sucker I am usually I do give tips (on non-service) because I like small business and supporting staff but I totally see your point and am with you OP.

    Cheers
     
  3. JackHorzempa

    JackHorzempa Poo-Bah (3,719) Dec 15, 2005 Pennsylvania
    Premium

    In my opinion, tipping should be based upon the level of effort and quality of service provided. Do so accordingly and ignore what some tablet’s software lists.

    Cheers!
     
  4. Biff_Tannen

    Biff_Tannen Aspirant (256) Dec 8, 2013 Missouri

    Wow. You beat me to the punch on this topic, Hop Troll. I too have been dealing with this regularly, though typically when they give me that disappointed look i give them a look back like “is there a problem?” I would love for one of these people to engage me on the topic right on the spot, but deep down i think they know it’s ridiculous as well.
     
  5. Lahey

    Lahey Disciple (387) Nov 12, 2016 Michigan

    Tipping is kind of bs when it comes to good beer. A guy buying a bud light at the bar leaves a dollar and that's reasonable. When the beers get to be 8-10 dollars a pour, now you look like a cheap ass for leaving a dollar. It takes no more work to pour that second beer. Still, I tip more than I probably have to in order to get decent service the next time.
     
  6. MNAle

    MNAle Meyvn (1,037) Sep 6, 2011 Minnesota

    Curmudgeon solution: Pay with cash.
     
  7. HOP_KING

    HOP_KING Initiate (112) Jan 30, 2013 Illinois

    I try, but both these places are card only.
     
    dukeandduke likes this.
  8. HOP_KING

    HOP_KING Initiate (112) Jan 30, 2013 Illinois

    I agree. But what do you think is valid? What do you tip when you get a few pints and a few 4-packs or bottles to go?

    Do you tip 20%? How do you feel if you tip 10% or god forbid even less since you are buying a lot of carry out and you get the evil eye? That's my point, not sure your philosophical comment addresses that.
     
  9. mambossa

    mambossa Initiate (128) Jun 30, 2015 Ohio

    Not even a tip jar? What kinda shit is that?
     
  10. SammyJaxxxx

    SammyJaxxxx Poo-Bah (2,234) Feb 23, 2012 New Jersey
    Premium Trader

    I love tipping. I tip everyone I can. If I am at a place that is explicitly "No Tipping" I tip extra. I believe we should walk around tipping like it is New Year's Eve in Vegas.
     
  11. HOP_KING

    HOP_KING Initiate (112) Jan 30, 2013 Illinois

    Maybe one allows cash but the other does not. But both use the same tablet and tipping process.
     
  12. BayAreaJoe

    BayAreaJoe Defender (612) Nov 23, 2017 California
    Trader

    I don't understand or adhere to calculating taxes into the tip. I generally tip 20%, which comes out to 18.45% in some folks' minds.
     
  13. MNAle

    MNAle Meyvn (1,037) Sep 6, 2011 Minnesota

    Curmudgeon solution #2: Don't go there.

    In-your-face solution: Enter 0 tip on the tablet, drop a dollar bill on the counter, and give them the death stare!
     
  14. cavedave

    cavedave Poo-Bah (2,461) Mar 12, 2009 New York
    Trader

    My own philosophy is that I will tip if there is pouring involved and it is done satisfactorily.

    In retail situations, if it is just saving me from opening a fridge door by handing me packaged product across a counter, then I have never and will never tip.

    I also decline the touchscreen tip option. I tip cash into the jar, just to make sure the person I want to get the tip gets it..
     
  15. MNAle

    MNAle Meyvn (1,037) Sep 6, 2011 Minnesota

    Both Minneapolis and St Paul have adopted $15 minimum wage ordinances with no tip credit allowed.

    Once this goes into effect, in those cities, I'm not tipping anyone for anything anymore.
     
  16. iRun2Beer

    iRun2Beer Savant (980) Jan 27, 2015 Minnesota
    Trader

    This is a can of worms. A lot of beer tenders make garbage for wages, and literally live off tips. I know a few beertenders who took minimum wage jobs pouring beers to get their foot in the door in the beer industry. It's a bad situation all around because you don't want to tip them because "all they did was pour a pint" and the brewery owner doesn't want to pay them because their overall margins are already slim as it is, so they pass a significant portion of the beertenders salary onto the customer.

    I always tip $1 per drink, regardless of the price, discount, BOGO status, etc. $1 per drink. Cash, every time (when cash accepted). In my experience, servers prefer cash tips because they can pocket it and don't need to claim it on their taxes. At least...that's just what I've heard. I don't know any servers if the IRS is reading this.
     
  17. iRun2Beer

    iRun2Beer Savant (980) Jan 27, 2015 Minnesota
    Trader

    Agreed - however it will take nearly a decade for this to go fully into effect. So still got many more years of tipping.
     
  18. zid

    zid Savant (921) Feb 15, 2010 New York

    I am shocked. Shocked! :wink:
     
  19. MNAle

    MNAle Meyvn (1,037) Sep 6, 2011 Minnesota

    My practice is to never tip on the card. I tip the server directly in cash. That way, I know who is getting it, and I am giving the server the option of tax-free income! (Shhh... they never do that, do they? :astonished:)
     
  20. stevepat

    stevepat Disciple (374) Mar 12, 2013 California
    Trader

    It's illegal to not accept cash. The fact that everyone is legally compelled to accept it (for all debts, public and private) is the only thing that gives the good ol usd it's value. But ya this is a pain in the ass, in my experience most bar tenders recognize the dollar a drink as a reasonable tip even if it is some 12$ pour and the few i've talked to more in depth about it acknowledge that they don't even necessarily expect that because they recognize how spendy a tab at a good beer bar can be already.
    I personally don't tip for to go beers, and tip more if the bar is busy because the barkeep is working harder
     
  21. AZBeerDude72

    AZBeerDude72 Meyvn (1,397) Jun 10, 2016 Arizona
    Premium Trader

    I may start tipping the grocery check out people and bagger, when you think about it they probably do deserve tips bagging all day :thinking_face:
     
  22. cavedave

    cavedave Poo-Bah (2,461) Mar 12, 2009 New York
    Trader

    Funny, I edited that exact tax thought out of my post, lol

    And just a general comment, I worked a job for my last career in life that was not a tipped position by any means. I always went above and beyond just because it made life simpler in general at work to do that. I got a lot of great tips, and they always were appreciated, and I always tip for that kind of above and beyond shit regardless of any other thoughts about tipping.
     
  23. JackHorzempa

    JackHorzempa Poo-Bah (3,719) Dec 15, 2005 Pennsylvania
    Premium

    I think you should tip per your personal preferences. You should not view me as a 'model' here.

    Having stated the above my personal preference is to tip a buck per draft beer served. The bartender is performing a service in pouring that draft beer and I am of the opinion a buck a pour is consistent with the level of effort here. If I were to order a fancy cocktail (which I personally never do) I would likely be inclined to tip a couple of bucks per drink since there is more effort is making something like a fancy martini.

    As regards to purchasing a 4/6 pack of beer, I do not tip the employees at my local beer stores so I would not be inclined to tip for this sort of purchase.

    Again, you should tip per your own inclinations.

    Cheers!
     
  24. Lahey

    Lahey Disciple (387) Nov 12, 2016 Michigan

    I tip young kids that do extra at their jobs. Shoveling around the handicapped spots for the elderly in winter? Here's 5 bucks. Install my battery for me at the auto store in the cold, tipping you too. Hard work should be rewarded, especially when they're polite.
     
  25. SammyJaxxxx

    SammyJaxxxx Poo-Bah (2,234) Feb 23, 2012 New Jersey
    Premium Trader

    ALWAYS, ALWAYS ALWAYS tip the guy at the Deli that slices your cold cuts.
     
  26. TongoRad

    TongoRad Poo-Bah (2,509) Jun 3, 2004 New Jersey
    Premium Trader

    That's the way it makes sense to me- if I'm just getting cans it's a straight transaction (no matter how much they try to guilt you into a tip on those touchscreens :wink:). After all, I'm just paying at the bar because there's no separate retail register. But for crowlers/growlers it's a cash tip.

    I can't say I've ever gotten a vibe that I was doing something wrong. Quite the contrary on the crowlers, actually, they're usually very appreciative. So I think I'll just keep doing what makes sense to me. :slight_smile:
     
  27. AZBeerDude72

    AZBeerDude72 Meyvn (1,397) Jun 10, 2016 Arizona
    Premium Trader

    I know one thing, I tip my Mailman and Garbage guy each Holiday.... That is the best advice out there, you get stellar treatment. from that day on.
     
  28. AZBeerDude72

    AZBeerDude72 Meyvn (1,397) Jun 10, 2016 Arizona
    Premium Trader

    Agree with that. When I get cans I usually do a few samples or growler and always give the guy/girl a solid tip because they are awesome and always give me way more than I should so win win for us both. But if its just cans and go I usually drop a few bucks or nothing just because its really not a service.
     
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  29. not2quick

    not2quick Disciple (346) Dec 1, 2015 Missouri
    Premium Trader

    Yeah it is a tough situation. I walk into a brewery and buy a shirt, glass and two 4 packs for $70, there is no way I'm going to tip $15 for handing this to me, but that is the mindset for these places. I rarely tip at all for togo bottles, unless something catches my attention. If I'm buying pours I'll most likely tip 15-20%.

    Now if I go buy a $50 bottle at side project to drink on site, again no way I'm tipping $10 to open the bottle and pour a glass. I believe that is a 10% situation. Am I wrong here?
     
    horsehockey, Junior, pinyin and 4 others like this.
  30. AZBeerDude72

    AZBeerDude72 Meyvn (1,397) Jun 10, 2016 Arizona
    Premium Trader

    Very true. I always like doing this. Kids today get crap jobs that pay nothing then get stuck doing some vile jobs for people. So its always fun to toss them a $20 sometimes and see them smile makes their day to be appreciated. And I believe in the pay it forward mindset, when they are older maybe they will do the same for someone else.
     
  31. FBarber

    FBarber Poo-Bah (2,464) Mar 5, 2016 Illinois
    Premium Trader

    Before you complain about tipping them, might want to make sure they aren't being paid server's wages and getting tips like another highly regarded brewery ...

    My general rule is tip for draft (pours, growlers, crowlers). Hand me a 4-pack of cans or merchandise? Nah.
     
  32. Sabtos

    Sabtos Poo-Bah (5,255) Dec 15, 2015 Ohio
    Trader

    I absolutely hate tip screens with the person expecting the tip standing there right in your face, especially when the only thing you did at the brewery was buy a case of cans to go GTFO with that shit...

    But then again they've sorta been doing this in Canada for a while, with the chip cards they've had longer than us, bringing the mobile scanner right to you and waiting with you for you to sign receipt. Tipping customs there seem a bit different but I still had that American pressure on me.

    Anyway, at a bar I tip around $1/drink, always have, probably always will unless things change, as I have always been told that's customary.

    Frankly I would rather the workers get paid a good wage and we do away with this god forsaken tipping nonsense altogether.
     
  33. TurkeysDrinkBeer

    TurkeysDrinkBeer Initiate (37) Sep 8, 2018 Virginia
    Trader

    I too try to tip or reward in some way my mailman around the holiday. The douchebag garbage guy I have can suck it though.
     
  34. adrock314

    adrock314 Defender (699) Apr 14, 2006 Pennsylvania
    Premium Trader

    Tip what you wanna tip. Those are just standard suggestions that are pre-programmed in the POS software. The store/restaurant/bar can customize them fairly easily, but in my experience a lot of spots using iPad based POS setups pretty much just use the stock setup. As for the employee's expression afterwards, if you finished the transaction properly (clicked through to completion) there is nothing on the screen when they turn it around to indicate what you tipped. They would have to click back into recent transactions to view the tip or lack thereof. I wouldn't take the lack of a thank you as an indictment of your tip, I'd just take it as a borderline rude employee. Staff should be thanking your for your purchase anyway, regardless of what you tipped.

    Personally if I'm picking up a 4pk or something I'm not tipping or I'm tipping a very small amount if I'm picking up "in the back" at a retail table in a brewpub. If I'm making the transaction at the bar, from a bartender that is handling my transaction along with bar guests then I'm tipping more but definitely not the 20+% I would be tipping if I was sitting down for beers or a meal at the bar.
     
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  35. AZBeerDude72

    AZBeerDude72 Meyvn (1,397) Jun 10, 2016 Arizona
    Premium Trader

    LOL dude you just are not tipping him right. Give him some tickets to the ball game, a case of beer, and some cash, you can toss nuclear waste into your can and he will never say a word.
     
  36. FBarber

    FBarber Poo-Bah (2,464) Mar 5, 2016 Illinois
    Premium Trader

    Thats always the rule I had, but with the prices of craft drafts these days, I sometimes leave $2 ... its so hard to tell anymore.
     
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  37. FBarber

    FBarber Poo-Bah (2,464) Mar 5, 2016 Illinois
    Premium Trader

    When you can toss the body into the can without 'em saying something, then you've tipped 'em enough.
     
  38. TurkeysDrinkBeer

    TurkeysDrinkBeer Initiate (37) Sep 8, 2018 Virginia
    Trader

    As far as to-go sales like a few 4pks are concerned, I do not and never will tip regardless of what the individual makes for a wage. You grabbed me some cans and swiped my card, this does not deserve a tip of any amount in my mind. Draft pours and crowler fills are totally different as the individual is providing a service. In these cases I like the buck a pour mindset and will tip more for really good service.
     
  39. pbrian

    pbrian Defender (616) Feb 8, 2001 Connecticut

    I agree with this and operate the same way. However, the Trillium fiasco last week opened my eyes to the other side of the story. What if brewery owners are relying on its customers to subsidize their wages? Trillium pays their RETAIL staff $3 an hour, relying on customer tips to increase it to over minimum wage. In that case, are we now obliged to tip them? How do we know which breweries operate under the same model? Should brewery staff wear tags with their hourly wage so we know where we should tip and where we shouldn't??

    It's a much bigger story than us just agreeing on an old adage of tipping people when they pour you a beer, fill a growler, etc, and not tipping someone who's just handing you cans.
     
  40. TurkeysDrinkBeer

    TurkeysDrinkBeer Initiate (37) Sep 8, 2018 Virginia
    Trader

    I could see that working if my particular garbage guy wasn't the laziest piece of shit this side of VA. I regularly have problems with this douchebag not even doing the bare minimum required from his position. Funny you bring up nuclear waste as that is a part of my job lol. I could put a bag full of money on the side of the road and he wouldn't get it because it would require him to climb out of the cab of his truck. Never seen anything like it.