I’ve worked both sides; the event sales manager and I’ve been the server. Therefore, I’ve seen all kinds of tippers. My favorites obviously being the most generous or realistic. Let talk about some tipping etiquette.
1. Leaving the tip
20%+ you were extremely satisfied and your server went above and beyond
18% you were satisfied and your server did an ok job
15% or less you were dissatisfied with the quality of service your server provided
0% NOT AN OPTION. Never in my life have I left a server nothing. They could’ve totally sucked and I’d still leave them something. It’d be minimal, but it’d be something. A server would have to do something so extreme or insulting, to the point where I’d walk out, in order for me to tip them nothing. Being a sucky server is not okay by any means, but you don’t know what that person is going through.
2. Budget for the tip
Biggest pet peeve as a banquet server…..’I’m so sorry I can’t tip you more. We have a budget.’ Listen asshole, you knew you had a budget of $1000. You contracted an event for $950 therefore leaving your 2 servers $50….to split! That’s a shit% tip. This. Is. Not. Okay. If you’re planning an event and you have a budget then when you’re putting together your contract with your event sales manager, budget to leave a 20% tip. Assume service is going to be outstanding and will exceed your expectations. Don’t hose the event staff because you didn’t plan properly. They busted their butts for you and your event. Budget accordingly.
3. Bring cash if you can
If it’s an option for you, bring cash to tip your servers. Did you know you can ask your event sales manager how many servers will be on your event so you can be prepared? Yeah, mind blown, right. Just ask! You can also ask if that 20% service charge that includes the gratuity on your contract goes to your servers. Because guess what, often 100% of it DOES NOT. So, you think you’ve left 20% but in fact 3% of that goes to the event sales manager and 5% of that goes to the house (the venue). So, that means your servers only split 12%. You left them a 12% tip. Now, every contract at every venue is different. But, ask. And when in doubt, bring your servers cash!
4. If you can’t afford to tip your server, you can’t afford to eat out
This is very simple. If you can’t really afford to leave your server a 20% tip, then you can’t afford that $80 steak. Stay home. It’s thst simple. It’s not cool to run up a $200 bill and leave your server $5 because that’s ‘all you have.’ Go to Costco for dinner next time.
In conclusion……plan ahead, budget within your means and tip your god damn server!