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Question DetailsAsked on 6/10/2011

Should I leave a tip when getting carry-out?

I seem to tip all the time for pick-up orders, and I'm curious what's proper…

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19 Answers

0
Votes

Of course you don't tip for carry-out. You're already paying for the food, and they aren't performing any other service for you that would make a tip appropriate. You don't tip at a drive-through window, do you?

Answered 7 years ago by Commonsense

0
Votes

We have always tipped for carry out as do most people we know. One of the servers actually is responsible for putting your carry out order together so the tip goes to him/her.

Answered 7 years ago by michelemabelle

0
Votes

You can see why I'm torn as well. When I go to a restaurant that makes me "go to the bar" to pick-up my order, I usually stand there for several minutes. It's the most awkward place to sit or stand, so I seldom will tip there, but if I see the person who's packing everything up in multiple containers, I'll usually tip them.

I think we'll cover this on this week's Life on the List, the Unauthorized Angie's List Podcast.

Answered 7 years ago by LifeontheList

0
Votes

I know what you mean. It's a definite inconvenience for us, sometimes, but there's another side to it which makes it personal to us I guess. We have neices and nephews who are both in high school and college working in food service as waiters and waitresses for spending money. The three of them work long and hard hours and make very little except on the weekends. They depend on tips, which is the fault of the restaurant industry and not the employees. In most instances, they have to divide their tips among all the people busing tables and it leaves little at the end. For us, the couple of dollars means so much less than it does to the kids. Of course, you wouldn't tip at a drive-up. That's a whole different ballgame. Not any one person is responsible for getting your order together and they don't expect to get tipped. I would rather err on the side of generosity.

Answered 7 years ago by michelemabelle

-1
Votes

I think the point of reference here should be your behavior in a bar. I think it's inconsistent that people who will leave $10 in tips at a bar over the course of an evening (three drinks/ two people would be typical) won't leave a single penny when they come in to pick up a pizza. I don't think it's the world's biggest secret that those bar patrons who tip heavier expect to be served a more generous portion, so to speak, and they expect to be favored in a crowded bar when they want a refill. To me, tipping the pizza place when you pick up a carryout order is the same thing.

I view tipping as a barometer for the service you receive. When you pull up to a drive-thru, there is very little service involved because drive-thrus in fast food restaurants are designed to mimic assembly lines. There is a point of contact at either end of the transaction, and everything in between it's do-your-bit-and-move-it-down-the-line. So no tip.

When one places a carryout order, one is trusting that

1) the contact on the phone will get the order correct;

2) the order will be faithfully communicated to the cook;

3) the cook won't flub it;

4) the cook will finish the order in a timely manner;

5) the order will make it to the register shortly after you arrive and it will be packed reliably, hot, and delicious.

If this set of requirements is met, then the staff deserves positive feedback. In a restaurant, that means tip.

It's probably clear that I was once a restaurant worker myself. One other word to the wise: restaurant employees DO remember names (even phone numbers sometimes!). I've delivered food in small towns and in the big city. This fact does not vary. If you didn't tip last time, you're not gonna get that pizza in time to make it to feed the kids AND make it to the opera. Positive feedback is the name of the game.

Answered 7 years ago by boy wonder

0
Votes

boywonder does make a valid point..... IF one regularly orders take out.

Do I tip for take out? not unless it's delivered to me in the parking lot. Do I tip for delivery? yes. Walk-up order deli's is iffy. Regardless, a sincere "thank you" is common courtesty. Eat in? only a fool stiffs the waitstaff if the cook messes up! kinda funny, women used to be considered lousy tippers and rec'd lousy service; that is changing.... I continue to tip 25% to 10% , depending on service (not annoying hovering interruptions), AND on very rare occasions leave "feed back" pennies.

Maybe if consumers knew the minimum wage restaurants pay wait staff (some as low as $5.15/hr, some much much more); we'd consider the service we recieve and tip accordingly.

Answered 7 years ago by tessa89

1
Vote

"Maybe if consumers knew the minimum wage restaurants pay wait staff (some as low as $5.15/hr, some much much more); we'd consider the service we recieve and tip accordingly."

It's none of my business what another person is being paid. I have to assume that an adult would consider all aspects of a job - hours, working conditions, duties and pay - before taking it. I think being a waitress must be very difficult and exhausting work on all levels, but I am not responsible for supplementing anyone's income. That being said, I do tip in restaurants (15% to 20% for dinner, depending on the restaurant) and I also tell people when they are giving great service. However, I don't tip for takeout and when I ate at McDonald's and the like - years ago - I never tipped at the drive through window, which is the same as takeout.

Answered 7 years ago by Commonsense

-1
Votes

"I have to assume that an adult would consider all aspects......." Only in a perfect world. Some adults don't have transportation, have children to consider, etc. and must take what they can get. The concept of karma is always in the forefront of my mind. I might not always be able to afford to subscribe to Angie's List or to own a computer and I may need to depend on the generosity of others.

Answered 7 years ago by michelemabelle

1
Vote

" I might not always be able to afford to subscribe to Angie's List or to own a computer. . ." That's not my definition of down and out. About ten years ago I had a significant illness, was unemployed for a few months with no car. That's down and out in my book.

". . .and I may need to depend on the generosity of others. . ." I still didn't expect people to give me their money because I was having a hard time.

I do know some people are not as fortunate as others. My point is that while I know that it doesn't enter into my decision to tip someone, nor should it. A person's personal circumstances are not a factor in a business transaction. I will tip for service, but in the absence of any significant service I'm not tipping.

Answered 7 years ago by Commonsense

0
Votes

Although we have strayed from Life's basic question, I'd like to hear more from people who are currently employed in food service.

Until recently I was under the impression that a state or Fed minimum wage was a set amount without exception. Apparently not; have heard that is a common misconception....the rationale being tips augument salary/ IRS assumption too? While, I have never asked a server their hourly wage. I've been told it is common practice for tips to be shared with busboys, helpers, and often the cooks (also a chef & wine steward).



Answered 7 years ago by tessa89

1
Vote

Minimum wage laws do not apply to certain categories of workers. The assumption is that either the money will be earned through tips or not at all.

Answered 7 years ago by Commonsense

0
Votes

Wow! What awesome responses! [:O]

Your feedback was so great that we recorded a podcast on the topic of Tipping For Carryout.

The tipping episode is found over at the Life on the List web site: http://www.lifeonthelist.com/tipping/

Life on the List is an unauthorized and independent audio podcast produced for entertainment purposes only. The show and blog feature allegedly-true stories from the lives that power Angie’s List {the employees}.

We hope you enjoy it!

Answered 7 years ago by LifeontheList

1
Vote

It would have been nice if you had told us you were posting this topic to get quotes for your personal podcast. In addition, before quoting me on your podcast, I would have appreciated it if you'd asked my permission to do so. What you've done here just does not feel right at all.

We really are not here to give you "awesome responses."

Answered 7 years ago by Commonsense

0
Votes

Darlin' never heard of and don't care about your little blog- sure not going to look at it!

When I answer questions posed here, I offer advice to the best of my knowledge...it's been years since I was a "star". Snicker, check out the 90 year old who is participating in history courses at university

Answered 7 years ago by tessa89

0
Votes

This is a related question - I've been wondering.

At work we have a Coffee Bar. You can either have them make you a fancy schmancy drink/coffee, or they have regular coffees sitting out that all you have to do is pay for a cup and serve yourself.

The tip jar is sitting right by the register, so I keep giving the cashier a 50 cent tip for handing me a cup. I think this is wrong, and I shoudn't be doing it, but it's totally awkward. Oh, I guess once in a while I ask for a "shot of vanilla" in my cup.


[:^)]

Answered 7 years ago by WindyRocksIndy

0
Votes

I always tip but that is probably the result of working in the service industry for so many years.

Answered 7 years ago by Windows on Washington

1
Vote

[quote user="boy wonder"]When you pull up to a drive-thru, there is very little service involved because drive-thrus in fast food restaurants are designed to mimic assembly lines. There is a point of contact at either end of the transaction, and everything in between it's do-your-bit-and-move-it-down-the-line. So no tip.

When one places a carryout order, one is trusting that

1) the contact on the phone will get the order correct;

2) the order will be faithfully communicated to the cook;

3) the cook won't flub it;

4) the cook will finish the order in a timely manner;

5) the order will make it to the register shortly after you arrive and it will be packed reliably, hot, and delicious.

If this set of requirements is met, then the staff deserves positive feedback. In a restaurant, that means tip. [/quote]


Let me rephrase that a bit and see if you see the point.

When you pull up to a drive-thru, there is very little service involved because drive-thrus in fast food restaurants are designed to mimic assembly lines. There is a point of contact at either end of the transaction, and everything in between it's do-your-bit-and-move-it-down-the-line. So no tip.

When one places a carryout order, one is trusting that

1) the contact on the speaker/menu board will get the order correct;

2) the order will be faithfully communicated to the cook;

3) the cook won't flub it;

4) the cook will finish the order in a timely manner;

5) the order will make it to the window shortly after you arrive and it will be packed reliably, hot, and delicious.

If this set of requirements is met, then the staff deserves positive feedback. In a restaurant, that means tip.


HOW IS THIS ANY DIFFERENT??? I changed 2/3 words and its the EXACT SAME PROCESS! If anything in BOTH cases the cook deserves a tip.

Answered 7 years ago by Mesach

1
Vote

I used to be a waiter, so I tend to over-tip. That being said, I think the use of a tip jar has gotten a little out of hand. Waiters (at least in Virginia) make about $2.20 per hour. So if nothing else, they take a job knowing they won't make minimum wage without providing very good service. Someone at a Starbucks, however, gets about three times the hourly of a waiter. Also, a waiter generally spends a lot more time and energy meeting the needs of individual customers.

Having said that, I often drop a tip into the jar at my favorite Chinese takeout. The food is exceptional there -- and exceptionally cheap.

I wonder if Miss Manners has come up with a good rule of thumb on tipping. :)


Answered 7 years ago by VirginiaJeff

0
Votes

You should ALWAYS tip with carry out. Personally I work in the industry. I've worked for the last 6 years. Yes, Togo (carry out) people do make hourly. But more than half of it gets taxed. There for thats where tips come in. People who work carry out still have to do things for people.

They have to:

take the order/answer phones

get the boxes out of the window so they don't melt

when you make a web order and are out of sometbing, have to call you

take the packed food and CHECK it

fix errors if something is wrong

put all the sides in the box. Includes extra sauces

get guests extra condiments or whatever else they need after they've already placed the order (when you should have told them when placing the order)

get drinks so they're fresh for the the guest

run the food out to cars even in the rain

deal with the cooks for your ridiculously modified orders

take your complaints even though YOU messed it up or didn't show up on time for your order and now it's cold


theres a lot that goes into Togo that guests do not know about. They think their food is magically ready.



its just like serving. People don't understand what goes into that either.

your sever is there to give you food because your lazy self doesn't want to cook. Just because you had a bad day doesn't mean you take it out on me. Just because YOU can't read your free coupon is EXPIRED. You don't tip ME less.

Servers make $5 MAX/hr depending on what state you live in. So when you don't tip AT LEAST 20% I'm paying for part of your food. how you ask? I still have to tip out on it and I'm paid taxes on it. So you're welcome we are so generous we wanted to pay for your food. Servers don't get paychecks. All of that is taxed for the hours they work. whatever tips they make, is ALL they walkout with. I pay over $450 every 2 weeks in taxes and make $4.91/hr. So I don't not receive any tyow of paycheck. Servers are humans. They make mistakes. Don't expect too much out of someone. They try their hardest to deal with the most rude people out there. It takes time to cook food. It takes time for people to get your drinks. It takes time for servers to get your desserts out. Because WE have to do everything behind the scenes. We have to bring all the plates that YOU eat off of to the cooks. We have to fill the ice that YOU ask for in your drinks. We have to make YOUR desserts that YOU want oh so badly. Besides that we have to remember everything else you want from us. We also have to help answer phones and put food together so people receive their food in a timely manor. Servers do a TON more than people know unless yoube wotied in the industry. People make you cry even.

Mao next time you go out to eat. Think twice before you're rude. Think twice when you don't think people "deserve" that $5 tip. That's all they walkout with. They don't get paychecks.


Answered 3 years ago by Audiobreakdown




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