r/antiwork Jan 14 '22 Silver 5 Helpful 16 Wholesome 10

So sorry, I'm broke so I can only pay you $77 for my food. You were great though.

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u/The_Stav Jan 15 '22 edited Jan 15 '22 I'll Drink to That

Idk much because I'm from the UK, but is this really a massive issue for someone who's already broke but wanted to treat themselves? I feel like the anger should be directed at tipping culture and the companies that underpay their workers rather than the consumers who are just currently using the system as intended?

Just feels weird to be mad at someone who's broke for not paying more than the worth of their meal, y'know?

EDIT: For the people saying "Fuck the customer, they're basically stealing from the server and making them do unpaid labour!"

They're not the ones stealing from the server, the companies are. It should be the company compensating the labour of the workers, not the customers.


u/Joga212 Jan 15 '22

As a fellow Brit I agree.

This subreddit never fails to shock me when they always continuously get mad at the customer, rather than the employer. It defeats the whole purpose of the subreddit.

I genuinely think they all secretly deep down want the tipping culture to stay because it more or less benefits everyone bar the customer.


u/jacksonmills Jan 15 '22 edited Jan 15 '22 Silver

Yes, it does benefit mostly everyone but the customer, but in the end, it ends up hurting the profession as a whole.

My sister works in food service; she's been a waitress, bartender, bar manager, and restaurant manager.

The real appeal of tipping culture for people who are servers is, if you are good at it and find the right job, you can make several hundred dollars in a night on top of your "actual" wages, in cash, that you take home that night.

When my sister went from waitress to bar/restaurant manager, she actually liked it less because while she was pulling in more money over the entire year, her employees were able to work less (4 shifts a week) and make about 80% of her pay (working 6 days a week).

Granted, she had benefits, but mostly just health insurance (just medical + dental, no 401k/short term disability/or even vision). After paying that out, she was barely making more money than a server. Also, she wasn't getting money every day. She only got it at the end of every two weeks.

Eventually she just went back to being a server because she had the pull/seniority at the restaurant to work the "good nights" (Th/Fri/Sat/Sun, sometimes Monday during football season), never cared about having health insurance, and could work four days a week instead of six. Also, always having cash on hand felt a lot better.

On extremely good days, especially during Christmas/NYE/Holidays/the peak of summer, she'd make even more money than she would during the normal work year, so she could work even less and still end up saving money/making more money than she did during the "regular" times.

The employer benefits because they don't have to pay their staff anything more than a few dollars an hour - the server benefits because in a good situation, they can make hundreds of dollars a day, and they can work a little less than normal.

In the end everyone deserves a living wage, and to not work themselves to death. I firmly believe in a 4 day week/32 hour work week. But the system as it exists, ends up hurting people who don't directly benefit from it. Not only the customer, but it ends up creating dynamics in the restaurant industry that make it harder for restaurants to succeed. If you have a few bad weeks, you could see half your trained staff walk because they are no longer making the money they expect from tips. People who work at restaurants that aren't doing well or don't have the political capital to get good shifts at ones that are end up making shitty wages and struggle.

And of course, if you get a string of Karens/Kens, you could see jack shit for a night and end up getting fired because a lot of employers look at tip amount as a performance report.

It doesn't help the whole. In the end, we should have a fair, livable working wage for every industry; not just food service, but also agriculture (which is another industry, that for some fucking stupid reason, is allowed to pay far less than other businesses)


u/RockyHorrorGoldfinch Jan 15 '22

As a Brit, I'm curious whether tips have to be declared when doing tax returns?