Americans Actually Enjoy Tipping, Says Study

by Brianna Wiest

The concept of tipping is something that's been pretty hotly debated over the past few years. However, in a (somewhat surprising) turn of events, a new study has revealed that most Americans actually love tipping more than is often realized. It's become increasingly more common to argue over whether or not tipping is outdated, the ethics of the kind of emotional frustration that has to be endured to appease people just to earn a decent living, and of course, the issue of people just not tipping altogether. Certainly, these issues have brought to light some questions about the system. Would a more reasonable hourly rate for wait staff and service workers be more appropriate? Many people have very strong feelings about this, and rightfully so. When your mother raises a family based on tips, or you work extra long shifts only to make $20 without the (unreliable, variable) profit other people leave at the end of their check, it's only natural that tipping is a lot more than just whether or not you throw a $10 bill at the table after you grab breakfast.

Though many wait staff would probably be surprised to know, a recent poll of 3,000 Americans indicated that the majority of people are pro-tipping, and are conscious of trying to tip well. Conducted by Horizon Media, the study aimed to better understand American tipping culture. As we know, some companies are moving toward a no-tipping policy (and just raising prices/wages overall) while others are reluctant to make the switch. “It’s a controversial trend, with some in the industry championing the move as the wave of the future and others preferring to stick with the status quo,” Chris Fuhrmeister of Eater explains. "The vast majority of American diners fall in the latter camp.”

The study found that those in favor of tipping see it as a means of being able to reward positive service experience, and that by doing away with it, we are removing the impetus for great customer service; in the end, without "needing" a tip, it could really affect the way staffers are inclined to treat people, regardless of how tired they are. The study also found that opinions on tipping differ significantly by age. It concluded that 29 percent of people in the 18-34 year old category believed that tipping was "outdated," while only 13 percent of those in the 50-64 year old category believed the same thing.

What this essentially means, in more words or less, is that while younger people seem to be making the push for a no-tipping movement (wherein wages are paid more fairly and regularly) they may not be completely evaluating the repercussions of what that would mean for the kind of service received. Certainly, there are issues (and benefits) either way you look at it, but at least for now, tipping is here to stay.

Images: Pixabay; Giphy