Should Guests Tip for To-Go Orders?

Categories: Bites & Dishes

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Chef Elizabeth Meinz
Orange Table

YES: When guests tip on to-go orders here, I give the tips to the kitchen because they work as hard as the front of the house.





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Dana Mule,
GM and partner, Hula's Modern Tiki

NO: You certainly are not obligated to, but I do. If the person on the phone was personable and they treat you well once you get there, why not? For a few bucks, you feel like a champ, and someone else gets that much closer to making rent.




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Chef Brian Feirstein,
Cask 63

YES: It takes more work to package everything up correctly than it does to plate up in the restaurant.







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Jason Alford
Chef, Roka Akor

YES: I always do. At least 5 percent.







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Romeo Taus
Owner and Chef, Romeo's Cafe

NO. But, with a caveat: If, in a small place where the host greets the guest, walks them through the menu, answers questions, places the order, packs it right, and offers the guest a beverage while waiting -- all efficiently and with a smile thanking them for the business -- you should tip. And if you know somebody like that, I'd hire them.

What do you think, Valley diners? Are to-go orders at restaurants worth a tip?

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34 comments
contact184
contact184

Nope. Thats why you got it to go in the first place, avoid the tip!

 

chuckking
chuckking

I've tipped before and then end of regretting it when I get home and find out the order was sloppily packaged or just wrong (many times this has happened), and of course too late to bring it back. Since then, NO tips for you!!!!

Makeminetogo
Makeminetogo

I've been presented a check with a line for a tip amount in the drive-thru. This to me is offensive and strikes me as pan-handling. Happy to tip for good food and good service but some places are seeking to work this as something that is expected for anything they do. Yeah, haven't gone back to most of these places. Yokohama Rice Bowl in Tucson was one of these.

Anon
Anon

Let me get this straight, I'm supposed to tip them for getting the order right according to some of the chefs. That is pathetic.  In my line of work if you don't do the job correctly you get sued for malpractice.  Perhaps I should put a tip jar out for when I do it correctly.

teknik1200
teknik1200

it depends on the place.  if the bar tender is handling your order, I'll treat him as I would any other bar tender who helps me 20% or more.  if it's a nice place and there's a dedicated take out person who's putting everything together for me I'll go 10%.

if it's something like a pizza place or subway, I don't tip.

But I was a tipped employee in the bar industry for 15 years.

charlie_oscar
charlie_oscar

Do you tip at
the Mac Donald’s drive through?

Case
closed...entitlement society!

thebarbecuemast
thebarbecuemast

im sure the restaurant makes some money on the finished product. I think tipping is overrated. 

Where does it end?
Where does it end?

What's the thing with tips anyway?  Is bringing a $50 plate of lobster any more work than a $10 plate of spaghetti?  20% is bullshit.  And carryout is even stupider -- going to the restaurant and picking it up yourself requires you to pay the people to box it up?  Does the cashier at the auto parts store feel they've done you a tippable service by going to the back to get you the part you need?  How about the grocery store sacker -- finding fennel in the back is hard work!  Do you tip them?  I'm more inclined to patronize the restaurants on here that say it's ok to not tip their carryout person who hands you the food than the rest..

me
me

What percent does a food server have to claim in Arizona? that is the answer......... I am guessing 16% of the take out sale because that is what I had to claim in the state I was from.

vicelord
vicelord

I do not tip on to-go orders unless someone really wows me. The hostess is 9 times out of 10 the person who is getting the order ready. This is not a tipped position and only if she does something really unexpected will I give her a tip. If it happens to be a bartender doing the order, or it's one of the curbside girls at LGO, of course a tip is appropriate. I have worked in many tipped positions in my life and consider myself to be an extremely good tipper. NEVER do I order a drink and not tip at least a buck, never do I leave less than 20% on a dinner unless someone was flat out rude, comp stuff always = 50% tip on the value of the item comped. To-go orders, hell no though.

Jackiecruz83
Jackiecruz83

Where is the sandwich at the top of the page from?

vicelord
vicelord

Would be too easy for Chow Bella writers to include information like that wouldn't it?

DJ Roomba
DJ Roomba

A question like this doesn't even deserve to be dignified by a blog post. What's coming next, "Dining in- should you tip 25% or 30%!" ?

Chefjillian
Chefjillian

I have never paid my "hostess/host" waitstaff pay, so they never had to depend on tips. If they were tipped for a "to go" order it was just a bonus on their hourly wage. Plus, I had rules set that tipping was never to be discussed during business hours. If they had an issue with tips they could talk to me privately. That was automatic termination if discussed in front of guests. I don't feel restaurant owners should consider the general public as bad tippers but look at the percentages as a tool if their waitstaff is trained properly.

Anon
Anon

Think of this:
Usually, bartenders are the ones who handle take-out orders.  Bartenders often have to tip out bussers, bar backs, etc a percentage of their sales so on take-out orders in which they receive no tip on, they are losing money on take-out orders, aka paying for you to get take-out.

Concerned Food Fan
Concerned Food Fan

I don't tip at Taco Bell, and they're doing the same thing..

Anon
Anon

They get paid minimum wage at Taco Bell.  Waitstaff does not.

teknik1200
teknik1200

the to go person will typically get minimum wage, just like a food runner or expediter.  these rolls actually tend to be filled by the same people.

that said I still tip, minimum wage blows. tip=to insure promptness.

the places I regular treat me better because I'm a tipper.

John
John

Wow, Mary. What a dumb comment. That attitude is a sure way for a business to fail.

wang
wang

Tipping is another word for panhandling. Pay your employees a decent wage and include the cost in the menu.

teknik1200
teknik1200

to insure promptness

me thinks you get crappy service everywhere you go. i'd make you wait.

Geri Koeppel
Geri Koeppel

I don't think it's panhandling, but I do think you have a point. The European system of paying a living wage and not forcing servers to rely on tips has its merits. Our system of tipping is more motivational in a way, but I can count many, many times I gave excellent service and got stiffed or next to nothing, and other times when I was slammed and could not give great service, but guests rewarded me for trying. Still, I think it would be rather difficult to change the system as we have it.

Anonymous Server
Anonymous Server

Panhandling? There's an often spoken feeling among servers in restaurants - "customers should, at some point in their lives, spend even a little time as a food server" to understand the reality of it. They are paid lower than minimum wage and are depending on gratuities to make up their wage. Yes, they are taxed on gratuities, by the way. I'm thinking that you are very misinformed (and probably a non-tipper). Oh, well. 

joe.distort
joe.distort

that why i always try to tip cash even when paying for the meal w a card...

Bill
Bill

Why's that, joe?

Mary Rubino Wilyat
Mary Rubino Wilyat

yeah then shut down.

been there done that
been there done that

They do it in Europe. It's part of the dining experience. You know the cost of the evening up front. I know I would appreciate knowing your staff was paid a living wage and not DEPENDENT upon ME for a salary. We all know the customer pays for it one way or another. 

Anonymous Server
Anonymous Server

I think it would be a nice gesture to tip a few bucks (not 20%, but a little something) on a to-go order. The kitchen is, as Charles Wiley and Chef Brian Feirstein mention - preparing and boxing the order, and the wait staff who took the order is assembling the rest of the package with the condiments, utensils, drinks, etc. It is not necessarily the host who is taking and assembling that order (in fact, the host makes more per hour for their job - the server is making about $4.65 per hour and relies on gratuities to make their rent). It is often a server, who is also paying attention to their other tables as well as making sure your to-go order is as great as it would be if you sat down for service.

Anon
Anon

The kitchen isn't tipped on regular orders if you dine in so why are they being tipped on to go orders.  And most times the hostess, not a server checks the order and she is paid quite a bit more than a server because she isn't supposed to get tips.

Newwest
Newwest

Silvana Salcido Esparza
Chef and owner, Barrio Cafe and Barrio Queen
Silvana Salcido Esparza
Chef and owner, Barrio Cafe and Barrio Queen YES: To-go orders have always been a place where I leave $1 to $5 depending on the service. It's still a restaurant and the pay for them still sucks!   If it "sucks" so much, why don't you pay your help more Sylvia?

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