Is tipping getting out of hand?

What does everyone think? I first noticed a couple of years ago that the tipping “option” was showing up when I purchased food over the counter. I was a bit taken aback. I do give tips in that situation (the server is waiting right there while I decide the amount) but I don’t go above 10%. It feels like a mini-shakedown to me. From Axios:

Tipping culture is getting out of control, customers say.

  • By the numbers: Tips at full-service restaurants are up about 25% compared with a year ago, and tips at casual places are up 17%, CNN reports, citing Square data.

The big picture: People started to tip more during the height of the pandemic to support local businesses and essential workers.

  • And with the rise of digital payments, more and more businesses are including an option to tip on screen — at places people say they wouldn’t normally tip, AP reports.

“Suddenly, these screens are at every establishment we encounter. They’re popping up online as well for online orders. And I fear that there is no end,” etiquette expert Thomas Farley told AP.

  • Unlike tip jars, these on-screen requests can’t be ignored. And everyone, including the customers behind you and the workers behind the counter, can see whether or not you tip — and how much.

Reality check: The federal minimum wage for tipped workers is $2.13. And service workers rely on tips to make a living.

  • Now, as tip requests have become more common, some businesses are advertising it in their job postings to lure in more workers even though the extra money isn’t always guaranteed, AP notes.

Go deeper.