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How can a restaurant server explain tipping etiquette to foreigners?

I work at a high-end restaurant in San Francisco and we get many foreign tourists that are unfamiliar with tipping etiquette. Often these travelers don't tip at all and, since servers have to tip out, the server often has to pay out of their own pocket to tip the support staff. Does anyone know of a respectful way to inform foreign tourists on how to tip? Are there any restaurant workers who have dealt with this at their restaurants?

Asked By: Allen A - 7/25/2009
Best Answer - Chosen by Asker
You can't say that in a respectful way. That would be asking for a tip; whereas a tip is a gratuity, and by definition, is given without being asked (or reminded) for it. You just have to accept that some customers will not leave a tip and others will leave a big tip. It all evens out in the end. Treat all... More
Answered By: Anchors Aweigh - 7/26/2009
Additional Answers (5)
that's a complete contradiction, you're meant to tip because of good service not because you feel you have to, how do you think it would sound if you had to explain that they had to give you money just because that's what people of our culture do?
Answered By: schmulgy_eyes - 7/25/2009
 
foreigners know how to tip but its simple what you do is sit down write out what you would say like "oh hello and welcome to san francisco and here we tip people basiclly when you tip someone........" then you go online and translate it using a online translator and memorize or write it down and there ya go
Answered By: alphonse - 7/25/2009
 
I have been a server for 10 years... not sure how u can say it but if u don't think your getting a tip anyway you can maybe bring up in conversation with them that you make your living on tips and only get paid min wage. I know I got paid less than min wage where I worked but I averaged 20%. Maybe that would work but... More
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Answered By: Veronica - 7/25/2009
 
these tourists really should be consulting their guidebooks
Answered By: Jason R - 7/25/2009
 
since it's a high-end restaurant, what about discussing this with your employer. perhaps you could add a 20% surcharge to all tickets, so the tip is automatically built in. the ticket, of course, would state that fact so people would have to option to add to the tip or not; but that way you'd get a tip from every... More
Answered By: jess_sayin - 7/25/2009
 
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