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Friday, September 09, 2005

What Is Gratuity?

Rant time.

Scenario: You order food for delivery. Delivery service, which is owned by the dining facility ordered from, says that the food will arrive in about 30, 40 minutes tops. The food arrives after an hour and forty-five minutes and at least two calls to the restaurant. What do you do?

Well, here's what went down. I called the establishment, and they said the food would be delivered to us at work "any moment now". Any moment turned into another fifteen minute ordeal. Then, the delivery person ended up "waiting" for us to pick up the food from his vehicle! We asked for delivery to the third floor because THERE IS A REASON; not for giggles, either. We are short staffed, thusly using the Take Out/Delivery route.

Anyway, Genghis went down to pay for the food. She gave the delivery person a $2 tip.

Do you know what the delivery person asked with sarcasm? "Where's the tip?"

Ooh, don't get Genghis pissed off. She didn't earn the moniker for nothing. So, she lambasted him by saying, "If you drove here faster, delivered the food on time as promised, you would've gotten a $10 tip. Since you didn't even apologize for the delay or give an explanation as to why the delivery took this long, it shows you don't care."

First and foremost, I think restaurants with delivery services shouldn't lie when they cannot give a good recommended delivery time. Most of us that had done the take out/delivery services understand that there are factors that may delay delivery like a busy establishment or lack of drivers or traffic. However, the restaurant we ordered from got pissy and didn't apologize for the delay. It didn't help that the delivery person was rude.

Apologizing is always a good step to rectifying any problem, Heck, I think Genghis would've given him a bigger tip if he just said he got caught in traffic! But no, he QUESTIONED her tip.

So, in all, the tip was less than 15%. Heck, it was less than 5%! My question is, when did Gratuity become a necessity? I mean, gratuity is given for services rendered. If the service was pleasant, it would be a guaranteed 15%. When they go above and beyond, it's 20-30% (Nilly and I have given as high as 50% because the service was THAT great. It was a Red Robin, but no less, great). But for bad service? Come on, throw me a bone.

Should the US establish laws, like in Europe, where the gratuity is already billed in the meal in itself, and eliminating the headache of calculating 15% of a $37.42 bill?


Katherine said...

That sucks!

I too, order out a lot at work. There are some places that are great, and get you your stuff right away, and the places that don't. We always tip well when we get stuff delivered, unless it turns out the way that your crappy service did. We once had to wait over two hours to get food delivered to us from a place that is less than a mile down the road. It sucked, and we gave the guy like two dollars for a fifty dollar order.

Personally, I don't think that they should just have the tip added into a meal. I understand that with large groups it makes it understandable, but servers should not just count on getting a tip automatically, they should have to earn it, like we all do.


ames said...

i agree with K. on big groups, i understand gratuity included, but come on. i'm not going to tip for craptastic service. I'm a good tipper, in general, but you know what i would have done in Ghengis' position? I'd have asked for hte two bucks back! that's insanely rude, and horrifying. I'd have called to complain about the idiot, as well. A gratuity is something to be given in reward of good service. And yes, there are the jackasses that NEVER tip, but there is a time when you shouldn't tip. This, I have to say, is one of those times. In fact, being that late, and that 'tuddy, I would have expected them to not charge for some of your order.

Geez. That makes me mad. But then, I'm pms-ing and worn out from work. . . .


jackie said...

It's really is too bad that the resturant you ordered from didn't step up and say, "Hey we were having problems" or just something to help justify the long wait.

I have never worked in the food service industry, so I don't know how much they make, or how hard it is to serve people. But I do know that one of the corner stones of food service is customer service/relations.
I'm not one to complain unless service is horrid. This would have been one time, not only would I have complained about the extended wait, but I would have also mentioned the lack of common courtesy extened by the delivery person. Good job to Ghengis for speaking up.

I don't think tip should be included in the price of your meal, because a tip is to signify "good job" "you went above and beyond" "thanks" Not all servers, waiters, etc deserve such a tip. There has only been one instance that I have left no tip, but I do tip on a scale, there is always a minium that I tip 15%, but more times than not I over tip. If you give me the courtesy of good service, I will reward you for that.