Let’s discuss finances, shall we? Like many college students, I have a job, as you probably do too. What’s best about having a job is financial independence apart from my parents’ income. For this financial security, I spend half my week as a server at Cracker Barrel. Now let me tell you what I’ve learned about serving and the crimes against humanity.
I can’t tell you how many times someone has come into Cracker Barrel feeling like hot stuff because they’re able to take advantage of the server. I’m sure plenty of servers can relate anywhere, but somehow the home-cooking marketed chain of Cracker Barrel is notorious for old people to come in and leave a crappy tip.
But what’s richer are the millennials and Gen Zs who come in and do the same. They’re just as guilty as the baby boomers. I haven’t entirely given up hope for humanity yet, so my only explanation for low tippers is due to the undereducation or inexperience of a server’s life. Allow me to enlighten you.
First off, servers make $2.13/hour. That is impoverishment level wages. All the money I bring home are tips because that meager 2.13 goes straight to Uncle Sam. On the off chance that I do get to see that wage when my paycheck comes in, the most it’s ever been was $11 after two weeks. Who can pay bills on that wage alone? Nobody in America. That’s why tips matter the most. It’s a server’s only income.
Secondly, many people have said that servers make a killing in tips. FALSE. Sometimes that’s true, but only because many families/individuals have been generous enough to tip the appropriate amount of 15-20 percent. I thank God for those people.
In consequence, some may justify themselves by saying the $2 they lay down will be a drop in the bucket compared to the rest of the shift’s earnings, but I guarantee you that every server counts those tips religiously and marks up just how much of a waste their time was spent on someone who decided to tip low. If you don’t feel like tipping, go somewhere else. Panera Bread, McAllister’s and other sit-downs don’t require a tip.
Overall, the best advice I can give to someone who doesn’t understand how to tip is this:
1. Tip 20 percent. If you have the money to eat out, you should have the money to support your server since you have enough to support the restaurant.
2. ALWAYS tip more than you think is “right.” Be generous. Give unto those you wish to be done unto you. Remember the Golden Rule.
3. If you don’t want to tip correctly, please, by all means tell your server you’ll only be tipping them $2. See what kind of service you get then. After all, fair is fair.
To those of you nodding your heads at this article, thank you for your generosity. All servers everywhere appreciate your kindness.