It’s hard to get away from the latest culinary caper circulating online under the hashtag #tipthebillchallenge. It is to encourage restaurant goers to tip on the full cost of the bill. In other words tipping out at 100%. Let me put it yet another way, if your meal cost $20 under #tipthebillchallenge you would be expected to tip your server that same (or an additional) $20.00.

It’s outrageous to even consider such a tip, even if you can afford it.

On Pulse Mornings we spoke to Dining Etiquette Educator Sunita Padda. We wanted to know what the rules are, if any for tipping. She explained in general diners should consider a tip in the 18-20% range. Keep in mind that many servers pool their tips and share with kitchen and bar staff, as well as busers and dishwashers. Be generous where you can and fair when you can’t. Sometimes the service or the meal or both may not have met your expectations. And, never hesitate to offer a gentle word of feedback (that’s puny).

Ask yourself if a less than perfect performance is a one-off or a trend. Adjust your tip accordingly.

The #tipthebillchallenge may be a good idea (mainly for servers), but it’s not practical. I recognize restaurant margins are razor thin, but what if they brought up their menu prices to allow for a reasonable profit and better wages. Most of us would probably be ok with that. That a 15-20% tip would be (and in truth already is) a pretty good deal. Bon Appétit

Listen to the Pulse Mornings interview 🔊 Here

Ian Power