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  #51  
Old 11-30-2007, 05:44 PM
Kyle Kyle is offline
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Default Re: PDT 2/2 : Why has tipping increased?

More and more people are eating out these days. It is a much higher percentage than 40 and even 20 years ago. More two working parents and single parent homes means less time for home cooked meals. That translates into more restaurants and more restaurant employees. After having worked in a restaurant a person is much more likely to give better tips. Since tipping is passed onto children from parents this is going to have a compounding effect. Also being a bad tipper has a negative social connotation. Therefore if a majority or strong minority is tipping x then it will spread to others.

I doubt we are going to see tipping decline but there has to be an inflection point where it just stops increasing or the growth rate becomes minuscule.

Also an increase in disposable income will increase tipping. Tipping could be considered conspicuous consumption much like buying name brand items. More money=more money spent on status.

EDIT: Actually the more I think about it I like the conspicuous consumption theory. IMO this resonates throughout American society in many different aspects. Someone mentioned this earlier, but bottle service immediately springs to mind.
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  #52  
Old 11-30-2007, 05:50 PM
NoahSD NoahSD is offline
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Default Re: PDT 2/2 : Why has tipping increased?

[ QUOTE ]

1- because there's something that makes me feel good about knowing I'm tipping slightly more than normal. I try to be a very appreciative customer. It's not just tipping, but also lots of thank yous and whatever else. This is mostly because of my brief experience working in the service industry.


[/ QUOTE ]

This was my first thought.

I want to be a good tipper. I think most people also do. The fact that tipping keeps going up just means that being a good tipper is worth paying whatever % above the norm people think amounts to being a good tipper.
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  #53  
Old 11-30-2007, 05:52 PM
NoahSD NoahSD is offline
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Default Re: PDT 2/2 : Why has tipping increased?

People who are saying that tipping has increased because the gap between rich and poor (white color workers/service workers) has increased,

You really think people are thinking about that?
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  #54  
Old 11-30-2007, 06:24 PM
stinkypete stinkypete is offline
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Default Re: PDT 2/2 : Why has tipping increased?

[ QUOTE ]
People who are saying that tipping has increased because the gap between rich and poor (white color workers/service workers) has increased,

You really think people are thinking about that?

[/ QUOTE ]

they don't necessarily have to think about it in that way for it to be true. there are definitely people who think "adding an extra 5% won't make any difference to me, but i bet it'll make that server happy".

also, lol at "white color workers"
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  #55  
Old 11-30-2007, 07:27 PM
limon limon is offline
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Default Re: PDT 2/2 : Why has tipping increased?

tips have gone up becuase people go out so much more often and you dont want to be known as a stiff or you wont get a table. regulars tip more than randoms and as people go out more you get more regulars than randoms. supply and demand increases the tips at in demand places and the tide raises all ships.
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  #56  
Old 11-30-2007, 07:28 PM
Dids Dids is offline
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Default Re: PDT 2/2 : Why has tipping increased?

Another point limon hits on kinda:

I've been eating lunch in the same area for nearly 10 years. Leaving a larger than normal tip is also part of hoping I get better/equal service next time. Also, by doing that, I feel like it makes those times I tip less for a reason speak louder.
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  #57  
Old 11-30-2007, 07:43 PM
PITTM PITTM is offline
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Default Re: PDT 2/2 : Why has tipping increased?

Guys,

I think what you need to realize here is el d is asking why tipping has increased, not IF tipping has increased. To me it is incredibly clear that is has. Places I used to go that autogratted 15 now autograt 18, etc. Why and not the IF imo.
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  #58  
Old 11-30-2007, 07:48 PM
bobman0330 bobman0330 is offline
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Default Re: PDT 2/2 : Why has tipping increased?

[ QUOTE ]
I think the bulk of the reason is sociological. If I had to guess, I would say that the incremental moves are because (as has been suggested) people want to feel 'better' than the norm. If the norm is 15%, then 20% is 'better'. Also, I am sure this is pushed by the perception of what more rich and/or famous people do. I don't think this really goes on at a conscious level though. This seems similar to words and names coming in to and out of fashion with the masses to me. We are, as individuals and cultures, striving by large to be better than the norm, however we perceive better than the norm as being.

[/ QUOTE ]

This is the answer. People who leave less than the average tip are stiffs that no one likes. People who leave more than the average tip are generous people who feel for the common man. It's also in the nature of restaurant meals that they are often situations where people want to show how great they are (dates, business lunches, even meals with friends. eating by yourself where there's no one whose opinion you care about to witness the tip is a rarity). So everyone wants to be above average, which is obviously mathematically impossible. When the perceived average was 15%, the real average was probably 20%. Now that the perceived average has caught up to the old reality of 20%, the real average is even higher.

Some people think that a similar effect plays a role in CEO pay, of all things. No board goes around looking for a bargain CEO who will work for less than average. They want a great CEO and they tell their comp consultants to pay him an above-average salary. And the same cycle goes on.
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  #59  
Old 11-30-2007, 07:52 PM
PITTM PITTM is offline
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Default Re: PDT 2/2 : Why has tipping increased?

Very good post imo. Totally agree.
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  #60  
Old 11-30-2007, 08:01 PM
miajag miajag is offline
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Default Re: PDT 2/2 : Why has tipping increased?

This is mostly just speculation, but I feel like there are a lot more restaurants these days than in the past, even as recently as the '80s and early '90s, when I was a kid. Big national chains like Fridays, Chili's, etc. are everywhere now. Not sure whether these are choking out local places and keeping the overall restaurant/population ratio the same, but if that ratio is indeed increasing, there is likely also a higher percentage of people who worked in a restaurant waiting/bussing tables as a job in high school/college. These people are, in my experience at least, more likely to tip more, so if there's a higher percentage of ex- and current restaurant workers eating at restaurants, that might at least partially explain the rise in average tip. Again, just a theory of mine, but I think it makes sense.
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