Tipping on To Go Orders

Discussion in 'General Discussion | Dining' started by schnitzel, Mar 27, 2012.  |  Print Topic

  1. schnitzel
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    schnitzel Gold Member

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    I often find myself in an uncomfortable situation when buying to-go food at restaurants. It concerns tipping.

    My bottom-line feeling is, this isn't a time to tip. I'm not being provided table service. The counter person isn't getting that waiter minimum salary that is supposedly compensated for by tips. And I'm not taking up space in the restaurant.

    But I'm always uncomfortable when the credit card slip comes. There's pretty much always a space on there for me to add a tip. So what are the options?

    1 - I can not fill that part out, just sign it and be done, and hope.

    2 - I can pay cash instead to try to obviate the issue (and lose the cc points/miles, and be burdened with change in my pocket, which I hate). And there's still the inevitable tip jar.

    or

    3 - I can put a line or a zero in the tip area, and rewrite the subtotal again in the total spot.

    And, with any of these, I can mumble something to myself about it being to go, so no tip, etc. in the hopes that they overhear me, which doesn't really help, but I tend to do it anyway. I guess that's my outward expression of discomfort.

    Is anyone else uncomfortable with these situations? Is there an obvious option I'm missing? Should I just be tipping in these situations?

    Finally: I'd like to commend a yogurt take-out place I visited once on Balboa Island. When the woman presented me the credit card slip, she had crossed out the tip area and re-written the subtotal as the total. Made me happy.

    Come on MPers! Fix me!
     
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  2. MSPeconomist
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    MSPeconomist Gold Member

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    I would never leave the tip line totally blank. It's too easy for someone to add something and then alter the total. If you have a copy of the receipt you can report the problem and dispute the amount with your credit card company, but prevention is easier. Draw a line through or write words like take out or self service in the blank space. I always write INCLUDED when the restaurant has already imposed a service charge that is adequate.
     
  3. perryplatypus

    perryplatypus Gold Member

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    I never tip on a to go order. Just mark a zero and sign and go.
     
  4. Dangjr213

    Dangjr213 Gold Member

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    I feel the same way you do about to-go orders. However I always leave $1 this way someone doesn't fill it out for me.
     
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  5. uggboy
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    uggboy Gold Member

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    I cannot remember that I have ever left a tip on a " to go " order, only on table service!:)
     
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  6. schnitzel
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    schnitzel Gold Member

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    Interesting move - I'm probably too cheap for it, or at least I'd think through the value of the points this way versus cash, but I like the idea.
     
  7. schnitzel
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    schnitzel Gold Member

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    So, so far, three people say basically "never on a to go order" and one more (MSPeconomist) implies it.

    I guess that means I don't stand out like a cheapskate for not tipping on these orders.

    No one feels bad writing the zero or the line?
     
  8. kansaskeith

    kansaskeith Gold Member

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    Draw a line, or put a zero, total it up to the amount of the food, and be done with it.

    But your mention of Balboa Island made me superhomesick, having spent like a couple weeks there for like 18 to 20 years at 124 Grand Canal (at the bridge, on Little Island, before another house was built right up adjacent to the bridge). My father helped maintain the place for the elderly lady friend of the family who then owned the place, so we were given weeks -- mainly summers but not always -- rent free. Tacos at what was then the Jolly Roger at Marine and Park avenues used to be 35 cents, credit cards were almost not invented yet (AmEx came along in like 1958), and tipping was not an issue, as it also was not for at least 2,000 chocolate-covered frozen bananas I'm sure I consumed! Dang you Schnitzel -- I'll be salivating about all this all night! :)
     
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  9. schnitzel
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    schnitzel Gold Member

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    Sorry! Yeah - nice place. I think I've only been back once since. But that yogurt seller makes me want to return also! And, yes, the chocolate dipped bananas are pretty fun . . . I always think of Arrested Development when I eat one.
     
  10. Jimgotkp
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    Jimgotkp Gold Member

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    I never tip unless I am a sit-down customer. When I sign the receipt I just put a line through a zero on the tip line.
     
  11. mattsteg
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    mattsteg Gold Member

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    Just write a zero. Realistically they're not going to have 2 settings on the cc machine, one for table service and one for take-out that doesn't print out the tip area. Thus the tip area on the bill when no tip is expected.
     
  12. LarryInNYC

    LarryInNYC Gold Member

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    I doubt you'll find very many people who tip on takeout food. Just draw a line through the tip area and copy the original amount to the total line.

    I sometimes do this with sit-down service as well, and leave the tip in cash or give it to the waiter. Especially if Mario Batali is in the neighborhood.
     
  13. schnitzel
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    schnitzel Gold Member

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    Yes - I totally agree on the way the credit card printout works. What really bugs me, though, is when the place is takeout-only, and they still have the option for a tip.
     
  14. mrredskin
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    mrredskin Gold Member

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    i tipped the guy at pizza hut once for giving me the pizza they screwed up (no extra cheese or toppings i requested) and the correct one. only a buck tho. i felt it worth it. any other time, hell nah!

    what about the "curbside" places like applebees or outback? an acquaintance of mine on facebook went off on a rant one day when she was working curbside to go at outback about how a lot of people don't tip.

    what REALLY irks me is when gratuity is already included in large parties and there's another line that says "tip". no, not "additional tip" or anything denoting an additional tip, just "tip".
     
  15. MLW20
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    MLW20 Gold Member

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    It is awkward when the tip line is present or when a place has a tip jar at the register.
    I never leave a tip for take out. I ignore the line and just write in the amount below it so they can not add in a tip.

    I also don't get why other businesses have tip jars. Ex.- If I go to a bakery, it is not self-serve so what choice do we have asides from ordering from the person at the counter.
     
  16. sellthesedownfalls

    sellthesedownfalls Silver Member

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    I dunno - I generally tip at a coffee shop or bar, so how is takeout for different from these situations? I'd just tip ~10% or a dollar or two and feel fine about it.
     
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  17. julielou2
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    julielou2 Silver Member

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    Curse you perryplatypus!!! I do the same thing...
     
  18. philatravelgirl

    philatravelgirl Silver Member

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    In my past life I worked front house waitress at the oh so fun $2.01/hr +tips and also take out at min wage no tips so it depends for me. I get annoyed by the tips jars at take out only but also know some restaurants to give takeout order to waitress/waiter for their turn (rather than table) so I do tip them for putting it together or for outback/cheesecake factory curbside. Where I think it should be zero I put a line thru tip, total it and move along. tired of people wanting rewards for doing their jobs, I may put a tip jar at my desk for timely payroll, reimbursements and travel advice
     
  19. sfo1
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    sfo1 Silver Member

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    Do any of the above who have said they do not tip at take out orders, tip at Starbucks and if so why, and I would assume if you tip at Starbucks you tip also at McDonald,s Wendy's Burger King etc, because what makes Starbucks or anyother coffee bistro more tipable than others?
     
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  20. LAXtraveler
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    LAXtraveler Gold Member

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    I generally don't tip and just draw a big circle around the printed total that goes over the tip line. Then sign.
     
  21. Scottrick
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    Scottrick Gold Member

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    I do #3 and don't feel at all bad about it. It's a to-go order. If the restaurant or server feels that offended that you wouldn't tip on a to-go order, then they don't deserve your business or your sympathy.
     
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  22. spesalvi

    spesalvi Gold Member

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    I just mark a line across or sometimes 0, there had only been a couple occasions I actually tipped it was either because I had a coupon and my total was already low, I didn't want to seem cheap so I tipped 10% heh
     
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  23. citizenrex

    citizenrex Silver Member

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    Hate the idea of tipping in general. Restaurants should pay staff more.
     
  24. daemon14

    daemon14 Gold Member

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    I don't tip, unless I have a really big to-go order and it requires a lot of packaging. Even then, it's just a few $, usually under 10%.
     
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  25. DJP_707
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    DJP_707 Silver Member

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    Draw a line, total it up to the amount of the food, and be done with it!!!!
     
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