Letters to the Editor

No tipping, not right

In Tuesday’s edition of The NEWS, (May 13, p. A14) I see that a new restaurant at Pacific Shores Resort is evidently the forerunner for a no-tipping concept and the owner David Jones confidently states “this is going to create a social change.”

He further states “This (tipping) is a broke system, a broken business model.” Jones is new to the restaurant business and also probably doesn’t realize that the restaurant at Pacific Shores has been through a number of closures and reincarnations for various reasons.

My standard for tipping is 12 per cent. Occasionally, I will tip higher when service is very good/exceptional. Considering that restaurant prices have climbed with the price of food, this means that where a server earned, say an $8.40 tip on a bill of $70, they now earn $9.60 on a bill of $80 (15 per cent increase in menu cost). This means my servers have realized an increase of more than 14 per cent in tips over perhaps the past two years. That’s a pretty good raise.

Further to this, as a result of the HST fiasco, I do not tip on the total bill but rather on the subtotal, before taxes. Prior to HST, for most of my life I tipped on the total bill which was not smart but most of us did the same. We should all understand that when we add a tip to our bill we do so without paying tax on the tip.

As far as I am concerned, Jones’ idea is far too costly and while some other countries have different methods for rewarding servers, very few arbitrarily add a compulsory tip portion to the individual menu item. In some countries, tipping is not customary at all. Suffice to say I will not be visiting Mr. Jones restaurant and paying a 19 per cent tip for my meal. I believe his idea is ill informed and perhaps rather dictatorial and it will be interesting to see the results down the road, if his business is still operating.

Rob Williams

Parksville

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