Tipping

Discussion in 'British Isles' started by Darwin553, Apr 17, 2012.

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  1. Darwin553

    Darwin553 Initiate (0) Jan 5, 2009 Australia

    Try again. No longer do the Brits have a strangle hold on being the domain for expensive real estate. There is that T.V program on BBC (in the mornings if I remember correctly) that shows English families wanting to migrate to and buy a house in Australia. And now, English families are more inclined to stay in England as homes and land are too expensive or that they didn't make the margin between what they sell for in England and purchase in Australia that they once made and don't see much value in the move anyway...

    But I digress and getting back to the point that some of you are making with respect to the cost of living pressures on you which impacts your ability to tip, my only comment to that would be to compare it to the US and the point that tipping is only done in countries to which the practice is 'ingrained'. I mean BAs who are living in the US are facing the same cost pressures comparatively speaking when taking into account the wage discrepancies and costs of goods and services in the respective countries yet they still overcome these pressures and tip. Yes it is ingrained and instilled into them but there is also, from my way of thinking, an understanding on their part that bar workers get paid so little that they nearly have an obligation to supplement their income with a percentage tip based on a sliding scale of service or a set tip. This is something that I believe that, despite it being against the British drinking culture, that the Brits now have to do for their local bar workers.
     
  2. Ruds

    Ruds Initiate (0) Sep 15, 2008 England

    And that is unlikely to change as it is not part of our culture!

    A few other thoughts on 'your' London experience

    I note that you lived in Westminster, the 2nd most expensive borough to rent in, in London (in one of the worlds most expensive city's to live and rent in!!!)

    If you had tried another town in England or even area of London you might have got a larger wage (for lesser rent)

    Whilst I realise that your pub accomodation might not have been the best in Westminster - shared facilities etc, the average weekly rent for a 1 bedroom is £493 or £25+K per annum

    You paid for your central location through low wages - quite simply!
     
  3. Ruds

    Ruds Initiate (0) Sep 15, 2008 England


    And where does it stop ?????

    Why are bar staff so deserved?

    Let's tip ...

    hospital porters
    factory workers
    labourers
    litter collectors
    office juniors
    admin staff
    full time charity workers
    shop workers
    tinker
    tailor
    soldier
    spy

    etc
    etc
    etc
     
  4. reprob8

    reprob8 Initiate (0) May 22, 2008 England

    Looks like I almost missed a humdinger here.

    Tipping? It's down to our custom and practice, and, importantly CLASS. Pubs were, historically, the refuge of the working man, the factory worker, the poorly paid. They paid for their beer and that was it, there were no niceties, frills or pomp about the practice, men went there from work to get rid of the nasty taste of the day.
    Pubs evolve over time, but essentially the same practices continue. The drinkers do not get tipped in their job so see no reason to tip other people doing a job. And that's what bar work is, it's a job, just like any other and the people doing it get paid, just like everyone else who does a job. Now if the person doing the job is not happy with their remuneration package they have choices to make. Over here we resorted, in the past, to Trade Unions who represented the workers and got them a better deal. More recently Minimum Wage legislation has protected those who are unable to organise. The US has Minimum Wage Legislation, but as I understand it, employers can choose to ignore it if they think workers will be able to rely on the charity of others to boost the wage. That's called exploitation and profiteering, exploitation of the worker and profiteering by cutting staff costs.
    Now, radical idea here, if employers paid an adequate wage then the cost of the beer would go up, you would no longer be a charitable donor, you'd pay the same for the beer, the employee would pay tax on ALL of their income, the employer would not be such a scumbag for exploiting workers.
     
  5. cpinto6

    cpinto6 Initiate (0) Feb 25, 2010 Georgia

    Because tipping for no reason or stupid reasons is usually an American thing. In Europe in general you don't tip your bartenders and you don't tip your waiters or cabs either. The owners of the places actually do the responsible thing and pay them good wages with the money you're paying for the food/drinks. You'll usually leave a euro/pound or 2 if you were really satisfied with the service you got and more often, you just leave them the cents that you got as change. There's no reason you should have to help pay for someone's wages on top of the food you're already paying for. This is why they love American tourists in places like this in Europe though. The person won't refuse the tip but they won't tell you you're not supposed to either so they usually get what is to them hugee tips from Americans.
     
  6. cpinto6

    cpinto6 Initiate (0) Feb 25, 2010 Georgia

    Winner Winner Chicken Dinner!! This is also something engrained in American culture and why the avg American got a baseball bat shoved up their ass when the recession hit. The Americans are among the only ones living beyond their means. Families in Latin America, Europe, the Middle East, wherever I've been that isn't the USA...people own their shit.

    A family's home and cars are theirs and they take a vacation whenever they can afford it with the savings, they don't owe anything to the banks. That is why its kinda hard to get into the American way of things when you move there, because they're asking you for credit to buy things. Why the fuck do I want credit and owe money to banks :astonished:. All I need is a recession to hit and then for me to lose my job and I'm out on the street with no car to search for jobs with or roof to sleep under.

    This is why the recession didn't hit anywhere as bad as the US...the economy can get as bad as it wants but as long as you own your house and car, you can always just downsize. Other cultures are also used to saving up...the avg savings an American has is diddley squat. They can't survive for 6 months on their savings. If you take a look at an avg European vs as an avg American, the European probably has no debt, has money saved up, owns a small home and a decent car and takes summer vacations in another country, while the American is probably up to his neck in debt, owns a huge house and nice car, both of which he can't afford so he owes those to the bank too and doesn't really go anywhere on vacation. Part of it also has to do with that its extremely easy to get credit/loans in the US so everyone uses it.
     
  7. marquis

    marquis Champion (812) Nov 20, 2005 England

    My sister just sold her house in Perth for A$650 000..........complete with family room, pool and masses of space in a duplex plot.Even in Nottingham you couldn't get somewhere like that for 650 000 POUNDS.And what I see my American friends get for their money.........
     
  8. cpinto6

    cpinto6 Initiate (0) Feb 25, 2010 Georgia

    I make it a point to get a different server next time. Its only crappy service that gets no tip from me here.
     
  9. cpinto6

    cpinto6 Initiate (0) Feb 25, 2010 Georgia

    There's a lot more land...Europe pretty much fits in the US. Prices only get similar in cities like NYC, Miami, LA etc.
     
  10. CwrwAmByth

    CwrwAmByth Poo-Bah (1,758) Jan 24, 2011 England
    Society

    You shouldn't generalise so much matey. Some English people are nice, some complete saints, and some are arseholes (espcially in London, where you get not only the rich city financial worker yuppy arsehole, but also the lives on a council estate and would mug you for the wrong look arsehole). It's just luck really who you end up bumping into whilst you're visiting.
     
  11. reprob8

    reprob8 Initiate (0) May 22, 2008 England

    Why do you think that bar tenders should be subsidised directly by the customer? What is it about not understanding that it is the employers responsibility to pay staff?

    What is happening behind the bar in the UK is that staff are paid to do a job just as the person behind the till at the Supermarket, the guy picking up the rubbish you've just thrown on the floor and the guy driving the bus you've just missed. They get a wage, they don't rely on charity tips.

    Paying low wages benefits only those who pay them, that's why they're laughing at you.
     
  12. Hanzo

    Hanzo Savant (975) Feb 27, 2012 Virginia

    But that is just the way it is here. 2 out of every 3 new bars/restaurants go out of business here. If owners were required to pay their bartenders/waiters/waitresses a decent wage barely any restaurants could survive. The only other option would be to raise prices across the board, but it is already expensive to take your family out to dinner, any more, and most people wouldn't go out.
     
  13. CwrwAmByth

    CwrwAmByth Poo-Bah (1,758) Jan 24, 2011 England
    Society

    I know, it is a really ridiculous concept that employers should pay workers a wage they can live on.
     
  14. Hanzo

    Hanzo Savant (975) Feb 27, 2012 Virginia

    How you you feel about commission based sales jobs?
     
  15. jmw

    jmw Initiate (0) Feb 4, 2009 North Carolina

    I think it was reprob8 that alluded to the fix to this above. The price of everything would go up, yes and it should if this were implemented, but is the overall cost of taking the fam out to dinner any different than if you paid a lower amount for food but subsidized your serving staff instead? Probably not. And making this type of arrangement standard policy would tend to stem the spread of tipping expectations into other indistries where it has no business. Overall, costs would stay the same or decline slightly. And we could all live tip-guilt-free.
     
  16. Hanzo

    Hanzo Savant (975) Feb 27, 2012 Virginia

    You'd have to cap the price increase to 15%-20% for it to remain the "same" as when tipping was the norm, as that is the average tip here. Which isn't much of an increase and wouldn't really cover the new salary you'd have to pay your workers.

    Then, since you've taken away the only motivation for your wait staff to do their job properly, you'd have to deal with poor service and super high turnaround for a few years while the system got working properly.

    It would just be a mess.
     
  17. jmw

    jmw Initiate (0) Feb 4, 2009 North Carolina

    This is a well-rehearsed rant my friend, but it has absolutely nothing to do with beer or beer culture whether in the US, the UK or anywhere else.Not meaning to bust your chops but please stay on point. If I want to hear this stuff I'll listen to talk radio.
     
  18. cpinto6

    cpinto6 Initiate (0) Feb 25, 2010 Georgia

    Sorry, wasn't aware that was being talked about on the radio or news...I don't watch news or listen to the radio. Not being sarcastic.
     
  19. jmw

    jmw Initiate (0) Feb 4, 2009 North Carolina

    Very true Hanzo. It would be a mess no doubt.
    But we come full circle to things from the start of this thread. It would only be a mess because the US system has made it possible for the barstaff to hold the patron over the barrel, in that they can subtly discern who is making an open show of tipping through their session and those patrons get better service. It should have always been the other way around, so the system based on motivation has crashed miserably already.
    Incidentally, the staff's motivation to do their job properly should always be...to keep their job.
    Also, in figuring the numbers, remember that it would be 15-20% increase of everything sold at every table or stool for any unit of time you choose to calculate. Just shift "tip" to "salary" in your mind. It already covers it.
     
  20. CwrwAmByth

    CwrwAmByth Poo-Bah (1,758) Jan 24, 2011 England
    Society

    I'm going to get a job as a postman and start burning mail if people don't give me extra money.
    I'm going to get a job as a policeman, and arrest people if they don't give me extra money.
    I'm going to get a job as a teacher, and teach kids the wrong stuff if their parents don't give me extra money.
     
  21. Ruds

    Ruds Initiate (0) Sep 15, 2008 England

    I think some of the above examples already ring true in certain members of those professions!!!
     
  22. ReluctantScooper

    ReluctantScooper Initiate (0) Nov 4, 2008 England

    I don't tip because society says I have to. Alright, I tip when somebody really deserves a tip. If they put forth an effort, I'll give them something extra. But I mean, this tipping automatically, that's for the birds. As far as I'm concerned they're just doing their job.
     
  23. EmperorBevis

    EmperorBevis Poo-Bah (9,649) Sep 25, 2011 England
    Moderator Society Trader

    That is what happens if you don't give your postie a Christmas tip :stuck_out_tongue:
     
  24. marquis

    marquis Champion (812) Nov 20, 2005 England

    I expect-and rarely fail to get-to be served promptly and in turn if the place is busy.A clean glass (actually a legal requirement but still............) a full measure (ditto) or a top up given with good grace and the chance to try a beer which is new to me.Any problem with the beer, a straightforward replacement.This is the basic minimum of service to which I am accustomed.Often the last three will be carried out without my even asking.There is such a thing as pride in the job or simply doing things right.
    Staff who provide this level of service with a pleasant manner usually get the benefit of a good relationship with the customers; in less busy time they are able to enjoy contact with a variety of people all of whom help to make the job an enjoyable one.
     
  25. Ruds

    Ruds Initiate (0) Sep 15, 2008 England

    Indeed, and when one is a "regular" in said establisment (where you don't have to ask for any of those expected things) it is common to buy the bar person a drink, once in a while!
     
  26. meerkat2

    meerkat2 Initiate (0) Aug 27, 2007 Florida

    Then I don't serve you anymore.
     
  27. jmw

    jmw Initiate (0) Feb 4, 2009 North Carolina

    You do realize that you have stumbled into a discussion about tipping and its efficacy in a different culture, right? Have you read through this thread?
     
    Ruds likes this.
  28. meerkat2

    meerkat2 Initiate (0) Aug 27, 2007 Florida

    Fair enough, though some of the posts have been directed towards the differences between the two markets. The sentence "I don't tip because society says I have to" led me to believe that ReluctantScooper was from the US, but clearly I didn't take two seconds to click to find out :confused:. Do you guys have Hooters in GB?
     
  29. Ruds

    Ruds Initiate (0) Sep 15, 2008 England

    They opened some Hooters over here in the late 90's, early 2000's. Never been to one as can't imagine they do decent beer (have had some OK craft beer in US hooters). Not sure whether they still exist?
     
  30. ImperialStoat

    ImperialStoat Initiate (0) May 20, 2009 Ireland

    These ladies aren't starvin' to death. They make minimum wage. When I worked for minimum wage, I wasn't lucky enough to have a job that society deemed tipworthy.
     
  31. Darwin553

    Darwin553 Initiate (0) Jan 5, 2009 Australia

    I think what the British fail to comprehend here is that the comparative wage for its hospitality workers is terribly low in comparison to other industries and developed countries except for the US. The argument I hear is do your job right and indeed to a minimum standard subject to specific conditions and you deserve your wage no matter how low it may be but you aren't entitled to a tip no matter how well you did your job, the relationship you have established and the extent and longevity of that relationship. It seems from this that the UK drinking culture is stuck and indeed reluctant to move out of those dark ages where now whether it be that wage per hour is so low that working 50-60 hours a week to get any sort of decent living has become the norm.
     
  32. Bitterbill

    Bitterbill Poo-Bah (8,118) Sep 14, 2002 Wyoming
    Society

    The joint I go to most often(US), Old Chicago, doesn't allow its servers to drink on the job. I go there because they have the widest selection by far and there are some good to very good servers there. One in particular grabs a frosted glass(all of the warm glasses have beer logos on them now) and runs it under hot water because she "knows". In lieu of buying her a drink, I do tip her well.
     
  33. CwrwAmByth

    CwrwAmByth Poo-Bah (1,758) Jan 24, 2011 England
    Society

    They're lucky they earn any kind of fixed rate at all if i'm honest. Tons of people are in minimum wage jobs with no tips, and tons are self employed and earning drastically less than minimum wage. I'm sorry if I (and "the British") sound cold but I have little sympathy for people who do make a decent living whereas we couldn't even afford heating his christmas.
     
  34. CwrwAmByth

    CwrwAmByth Poo-Bah (1,758) Jan 24, 2011 England
    Society

    What you do is give the tip as the price of the drink, so it's gesture that counts more than anything.
     
  35. Bitterbill

    Bitterbill Poo-Bah (8,118) Sep 14, 2002 Wyoming
    Society

    Spot on!
     
  36. reprob8

    reprob8 Initiate (0) May 22, 2008 England

    I think what the Americans fail to comprehend here is that the comparative wage for its hospitality workers is terribly low in comparison to other industries and developed countries including the US. The argument I hear is do your job right and indeed to a minimum standard subject to specific conditions and you earn your wage, no matter how low it may be, and you expect to be entitled to a tip no matter how simple job, the relationship you have established and the extent and longevity of that relationship. It seems from this that the US drinking culture is stuck and indeed reluctant to move out of those dark ages where that wage per hour is so low that you have to rely on charitable giving to make a decent wage and escape paying tax on part of it.
     
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  37. ReluctantScooper

    ReluctantScooper Initiate (0) Nov 4, 2008 England

    Now, the server in my avatar. I'd go over twelve percent for her. If only.

    And, yes, we do have Hooters here in the UK. But the servers don't all wear false ginger beards. Not even if you tip them well.
     
  38. Ruds

    Ruds Initiate (0) Sep 15, 2008 England

    Is that a Euphamism?
     
  39. jmw

    jmw Initiate (0) Feb 4, 2009 North Carolina

    I see what you did there.
     
  40. Zimbo

    Zimbo Savant (956) Aug 7, 2010 Scotland

    If anything, I think this threads hints at how the Western world seems to be collectively broke with recovery somewhere pretty far away. The standard of living in the UK ain't all that great (when has it ever been good ?) but I think alot of people here don't take into account how badly the States has been hit in the last few years. And I think alot of people outside of this thread are still in shock or denial about the state of our finances.
    Still, nothing a good beer won't solve.
     
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