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Thread: Tipping

  1. #1
    Senior Member ArubaAce's Avatar
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    Tipping

    I have to say but after all the times I,'ve been to aruba I'm still confused when it comes to tipping at restaurants that charge the 15 percent service fee. Last night I ate at chalet suisse and I asked the waiter if a tip was included. He said very politely no sir that is a service charge that goes towards the salary and he hardly gets any money out of it but any tip I leave goes to him. I can see chalet charging a service fee because you are being served by like 5 different people so service is excellent. Other places it's just u n waiter yet they charge a service fee. When I dined at Ricardos last year I divided the service fee in 2 and left that as a tip thinking I tipped 22 percent which I was ok with. However the waiter gave me a dirty look so I guess I only tipped 7 percent in his mind. At chalet I ended up tipping the waiter 20 percent on top of the 15 service charge since the waiter told me he hardly gets anything out of service fee. I had the early bird special so I was ok with it but just confused at the whole concept. Fodors recommends 5 to 10 percent addition on top of the service fee but u never know how much the waiter is getting from service fee.

  2. #2
    Senior Member act1966's Avatar
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    Anything above the 15% already assessed is "extra". That waiter is full of it.

    Back when dinosaurs roamed the earth, I used to be a bus boy and then a waiter. In restaurants that don't levy a mandatory service charge, the onus is on the waiter to share percentages of his tips with bus boys, chefs, bartenders, maitre d etc. The mandatory service charge is apportioned to the ENTIRE service team. I'll bet the waiter in question here wouldn't distribute percentages and now he's trying to play on your emotions to eke out more tip that he doesn't have to share. Nobody in the front or back of house is making much above minimum wage.

    If he really feels that way, he should go work in a restaurant where there isn't the mandatory service charge. I would pity the staff around him but he'd also have a hard time getting his meals out, his drinks up, his tables serviced, etc.

    The flip side of all this is that crummy service is still rewarded. I don't like that model and tend to avoid restaurants that have a mandatory service charge.

  3. #3
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    If I am paying for the meal, I shouldn't be charged a service charge to help offset pay to staff. that's the owner's responsibility. If it is on the check, I will add an add'tl 5 to 10%, nothing more. Usually I tip 20%. It reminds me of those infomercials where you get a second one for free, just pay processing & handling. Of course you have to handle it, how else would I get it? technically you're paying for the 2nd one because they both come in the same box. I have no problem adding a service charge for tables larger than 6 or 8 people. Those are usually the ones who don't tip correctly (except I'm sure all of us on this forum who know better, lol). but if its just two of us, you've got to be kidding me.

  4. #4
    Aruba since 1979
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    Andrea J.'s Avatar
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    i agree with Act

    here are some tagged tipping threads
    http://www.aruba.com/forum/search.php?searchid=900253

    link not working

  5. #5
    Senior Member Traceyd14's Avatar
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    Tipping comes down to a personal choice. We often. Forget to look for the service charge, which is on us. If we do see a service charge we tip 5-10% on top of it based on the level of service from our waiter. That was hard for my over tipping husband to get used to, hut we have to remember wages are paid differently than what we are used to. When sitting in a bar setting some times we take in to consideration the drinks we are having. If I have mojitos, it creates more work so I feel a higher percentage is warranted (talking about directly tipping a bartender here). However if I am drink bottled beer at $4-5 a beer, my % will be on the lower side, based on how attentive the server is.
    For places without a service charge we routinely tip 20%, but go up to 25% based on the service received.
    Not sure when, but we will be back

  6. #6
    Senior Member Traceyd14's Avatar
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    About the service charge, would those who don't like the service charge be more comfortable if prices on all items were raised by 15% and dropped the service charge? Perception is everything. That's how I think of it, basically I wouldn't stop eating at most places for a 15% price hike, so I just think of it that way.
    Not sure when, but we will be back

  7. #7
    Aruba since 1979
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    Andrea J.'s Avatar
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    Service Charge at Restaurants
    try this link for more tipping conversations

  8. #8
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    I agree Tracey, I wouldn't not eat at a restaurant that has a service charge but I would not tip 20% on top of that. I use to be a bartender so I am very conscious of tipping but that pretty much raises it to 35%, not happening. But I would do 5 to 10% more depending on the service. The bartenders at bars are different. I just tip anywhere from 20 to 25%. If the bartender is fun and attentive, definitely 25%.

  9. #9
    Super Moderator Jacki's Avatar
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    I tend to agree with Tracey and believe the already high price of dining out would be even more on the individual meals if the service charge was not there. Either way will cost the same in the end and I just have to be a little more diligent in looking for that service charge so I tip appropriately.
    Jacki ~ loving Aruba from NJ

  10. #10
    Aruba since 1979
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    Andrea J.'s Avatar
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    although we'd prefer to dine at places that do not already have a service charge, we typically do wind up at a few places with the service charge .
    if the service is good, we typically add another 5 to 10 %

    in europe, the whole tipping process is easy.
    it's included as service charge.

    there, they pay their waitstaff/service staff a fair wage.

    remember when in aruba they used to call it a breakage fee?
    that really made my blood boil.

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