Why Are People Tipping 100% of the Bill?

published Aug 16, 2018
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What’s the most you’ve ever tipped on a restaurant bill? Was it because your server went absolutely above and beyond? Was it because it was the best meal you’ve ever eaten? Was it because you were celebrating a recent bonus at work? Was it because you drank too much wine and lost all mathematical abilities? Was it an act of defiance against the injustice of measly waitstaff compensation (which often depends on unreliable sources of generous gratuity to become a living wage)?

If you’ve never once felt inspired by your Twitter or Instagram feeds to do something good in this world, now is the time. The #TipTheBillChallenge is a social media campaign which is exactly what it sounds like. To participate in the pay-it-forward style movement, diners are encouraged to tip, not 15%, not 18%, not 20%, but 100% of the bill. (No ice-bucket head dumping required.)

If that seems like a shocking percentage to you, that’s the point. The movement aims to call attention to the fact that tipped minimum wage is significantly less than standard minimum wage, which is pretty shocking. The fact of the matter is that many restaurant servers depend on gratuities to earn a living wage… and when diners skimp on the bill without giving those actions a second thought, it can have huge financial repercussions. This is why the restaurant tipping debate has become so heated in recent months, with prominent restaurateurs (like Danny Meyer) even suggesting to do away with tipping altogether.

The #TipTheBillChallenge is in no way a suggestion that we all pay double the amount that we typically spend every single time that we dine out. Instead, it’s a great reminder to show appreciation for great service with both words and actions.

Are you planning to participate in the #TipTheBillChallenge?