For an early Father’s Day event and my father’s birthday, I took my father and brother to the Yankees at Mets game at Citifield, part of a bigger event thrown by Gotham Networking. We were trying to remember, and it could be 20 years since the 3 of us have attended a live baseball game.
We noticed recent changes immediately, starting from the entrance to the parking lot. There were 4 cars in front of us and it still wasn’t clear how much the parking cost, nor what methods were available to pay for it. There was a very small $40 parking sign about 1 foot off the ground in front of only one of the three lanes and we couldn’t see it until we were 2 cars away from the gate.
Since this was my treat, I was fumbling for cash when my father spotted the car in front of us using a credit card, which is what we decided to do. Once we got into the stadium, we decided to grab a quick coffee before deciding where to eat as it started to rain just before game time, so the walkways and concession stands were already jam-packed with long waiting lines.
Paying via tablet is now the convenient norm for many pizzerias, coffee shops, quick service, and fast-food locations around the city. These gadgets are quick to ask you to add, in some cases a hefty tip (15%-30% or higher) to your order, even though it’s a grab-and-go situation.
You have probably noticed, there is sometimes subtle and sometimes not subtle pressure to tip at certain places where you had never tipped before. Payroll processing systems have become advanced with companies like “Square” who offer tablets designed to expedite payment time and increase tip amounts.
T.I.P. used to stand for: To Insure Promptness!” It seems like the old school “tip jar” is on its way to becoming extinct. I must say I like the old school tip jar better as you make eye contact with the worker and get a “thank you” or sometimes a little nod from them showing that they appreciate your putting a few dollars in that jar means a lot.
My question is, where does this “guilt tipping” end? There are different schools of thought about that and which is better, the old-school jar or the tablet.
Pro Tipping Jar:
Pro Tablet Payments:
If you ask 10 New Yorkers about tipping, you might get 10 different answers. Some of the tablet drawbacks are:
I was thinking about this a few months ago when I was at the airport, en route to see a client in Florida. There was not enough time before boarding to sit down at a restaurant to eat so I stopped at a CIBO “Express Gourmet Market,” which was a self-checkout sandwich machine with no employees. When I was about to pay, a tip screen popped up. I had to laugh as I asked myself, who is receiving this tip, the machine? I knew that there would be a column I needed to write on this topic and today is the day!
Like pizza, there is no right or wrong with tipping as it is your personal choice. If one person says this thick-crust pizza is better than that thin-crust pizza, is it the gospel? Of course not, as you might like the thin crust better. Tipping is the same as it is based on your beliefs and personal experience.
Since we are now in the summer and summer camps start this week for some campers, I suggest reaching out to the camp to see if they have a “camp tipping guide!” Also, as per Jackie Gifford, Editor in Chief of Travel & Leisure Magazine, when staying in a hotel the tipping guide is $3-$5 per day and more if you have a big suite party, which usually means a big mess!
Have a Great Summer!