TIPPING

Webster's Dictionary defines the word "TIP" as a money gift as an acknowledgement for a service rendered.

Tips vary differently depending on the service rendered. In the restaurant industry a waiter or waitress is typically given a 15 percent to 20 percent tip. This tip should be calculated on the service total and not on the total bill, which can include a sales tax. The tip can be calculated by several methods.

    1. The calculator
    2. Mental math (1)
    3. Mental math (2)
    4. State sales tax charges
    5. A Tipping Guide - chart
Calculating a 15% tip from the above different methods.

1. The calculator
The customer enters the bills total (excluding the sales tax) into the calculator and then pushes the times (X) button. He/she then enters the number 15 (for 15%) and then pushed the percent (%) button to display the 15% tip amount on the bill.
Example on a 50 dollar bill: 50 × 15 % (display shows) 7.5

2. Mental math (1)
The customer looks at the bills total (excluding the sales tax) and mentally takes 10% of that number and stores this number in his/her head. He/she then takes this 10% figure and divides this number in half. Then mentally he/she adds this figure to the first number to arrive at a 15% tip amount on the bill.
Example on a 50 dollar bill: 50 × 10 % = 5 M+, 5 ÷ 2 = 2.5 M+ RM (display shows) 7.5

3. Mental math (2)
The customer looks at the bills total (excluding the sales tax) and mentally multiplies this number by three (3). He/she then takes this figure and divides this number in half to arrive at a 15% tip amount on the bill. Note: Remember to move the decimal point over one place for the percent calculation.
Example on a 50 dollar bill: 50 × 3 = 150 ÷ 2 = (display shows) 75 (move decimal point over one place to the left)

4. State sales tax (where applicable)
If the states sales tax on the restaurants bill is 5% of the total service, multiplying this amount by three (3) will result in a 15 percent tip. If the states sales tax on the bill is 7% multiplying this amount by three (3) will leave a 21 percent tip.

5. Tipping Guide - chart (Tipping Guide)
A tipping guide typically has three columns with one marked "Bill$", one marked "15%" and another marked "20%". The first column marked "Bill$" are numbered 1.00 to 100 dollars for the bills total charge. The columns marked "15%" and "20%" respectively are the amount on that particular line for the bills total charge. The customer looks at the "Tipping Guide" chart and finds the amount of the bill under the "Bill$" column. He/she then reads horizontally across that line to fine the appreciate 15% or 20% tip amount on the bill.

Interesting facts:

  • Your tip should be on the bills service total, excluding the sales tax. Tipping on the total bill including the sales tax, could result in you paying an amount of over 25% more than the basic service rendered.
  • Increasing your tip from 15 percent to 20 percent will give the waiter a 33 percent wage increase. A tip should be based on the services provided and not on a required formula
  • Let your conscience be your guide. When drinking an alcohol drink at a bar it is customary to leave 50 cents per drink regardless of the drink ordered.
  • In 2003, the IRS has set the standard mileage rate (the cost for operating a car) at 36 cents a mile for all business miles traveled. Based on this rate a delivery person traveling 10 miles (round trip 20 miles) could cost him/her $7.20 just to deliver your order.
  • It is customary for parties of eight (8) or more persons for the restaurant to specify the tip that will be added to your bill. If it is not noted on the menu question your waiter or waitress.


In tipping a food delivery person many factors should be considered in determining a proper tip

    1. The round trip distance and time needed to travel from the restaurant to the delivery location
    2. The manner of transportation. Car, bike, walk, etc.
    3. The weather conditions
    4. The time of day
    5. The amount of the bills total (excluding the sales tax)
    6. The delivery location, ie. is it hard to find or in a bad area

All of the above items should be considered in determining your tip. Ask yourself, if I were making this delivery would I be happy/pleased/satisfied with the tip the person gave me?

NOTES
Of the 52 states in the United States, five (5) states have no sales tax (Alaska, Delaware, Montana, New Hampshire and Oregon). Colorado has the lowest state sales tax at 2.9 percent with Mississippi, Rhode Island and Tennessee having the highest at 7 percent. The sales tax of all the other states falls between no sales tax and the 7 percent rate.
This state sales tax information was compiled from information taken from the Sales Tax Clearing House (www.thestc.com) and other sites.

Copyright © 2003 - 2007 R. Bruce Balderson. All rights reserved.

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