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eed017
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Posted on Saturday, June 11, 2005 - 06:47 pm:   Edit Post Print Post

With the advent of take-out service brought to your car, how much (if anything) should I tip the Outback or Applebee's waiter? This really is a huge convenience and I've been tipping 10% (like I would at a buffet-style reataurant). Any thoughts from you wait-staff or restaurant managers?
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tricky
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Posted on Saturday, June 11, 2005 - 07:19 pm:   Edit Post Print Post

Applebee's and Outback are only paying those servers $2.13/hour ostensibly because they're receiving the same 15-20% as the servers waiting on tables.

I don't agree with the policy; in my mind the Curbside servers should be making at least minimum wage and the tip from the guests should be nominal. Servers are tipped for the service they perform. Answering the phone and putting the boxes in the bag, cutting bread, portioning soup and grabbing plasticware is not nearly the same service as occurs indoors.

Before anyone who does "to-gos" complains, I enter this: For the last six months of my restaurant career I was the daytime supervisor. This meant I opened the restaurant, assigned sidework and stations, answered the telephones, acted as the daytime hostess on all but the busiest days and covered all to go orders. This was in a relatively upscale casual restaurant with a lunch ppa of $20. We would, quite often, ring nearly $1000 in to-gos -- often several hundred to a pharmaceutical rep. I'd take the order, put the order into the computer, bag the food (often with the help of servers, bartenders or managers, I admit), cash out the customer and often help them take it to their cars. (I wouldn't have required near as much help from my co-workers if my assigned task had been solely to-gos, though.)

For that I was paid $15/hour. Any tip I received was gravy, and I neither expected them nor felt I even deserved them. If a particular server had helped me to any measurable degree I offered the tip to her. If the bartender helped by answering the phone or seating the door, I'd offer or split the tip with him. (Mostly due to personal feelings about his laziness I split rather than gave him the whole thing. Petty, I know.)

I really believe that management needs to suck it up and pay their take-out clerks a reasonable wage. The service they provide is not the service guests are accustomed to tipping for -- and by definition they are not serving tables.

But, I realize that that is not the way it works and while I've never utilized curbside pick-up, if I did I would tip like I were a guest in the restaurant. Since the servers are being paid tipped employee minimum wage, and not the same as a hostess, supervisor or expo, AND FOR THAT REASON ONLY, I think you probably should be tipping 15-20%.

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nuvola09
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Posted on Saturday, June 11, 2005 - 09:47 pm:   Edit Post Print Post

"Applebee's and Outback are only paying those servers $2.13/hour ostensibly because they're receiving the same 15-20% as the servers waiting on tables. "

That's just not true. At my Applebee's, To-Go Specialists get paid $7.00/hour. I find it very hard to believe that it is any different at any other Applebee's, because they are corporate and there is no law (as opposed to state-to-state laws on tipped employee wages) saying there is a min. or max. of what to-go workers get paid. Therefore, all 1,700 locations probably pay their to-go people the same.

The only definite time someone who is doing to-go is getting paid sub-min. wages is when the bartenders or other servers are in charge of to-go orders, which they are (at my location) until about 5pm. These people are the ones who take time away from their bar/dining room guests to prepare your to-go order. They deserve a tip just as much, if not more, than the people who run your food out to your car at 7pm at night. Oftentimes, bartenders do curbside all afternoon while they have bar guests. At my locations, bartenders do curbside all afternoon, year round. It could be sleeting, snowing, pouring rain and they still do curbside. If that doesn't deserve a tip, I don't know what does.

For a long time, to-go people at Applebee's were not made to claim what they made in tips. There recently has been a new system installed where to-go specialists now are forced to ring in orders under their name, not an unassigned "to-go" ID in the computer. This means the computer, at a minimum, knows how much they made in credit card tips. Now they are expected to claim whatever they take home. Many of them don't like this.

The to-go people at my location say they average about 10%. That's fine for them because they do such a large volume of to-go orders. They'll walk with $40-$70 on a busy weekend night, plus their $7.00/hour wages. That's pretty damn good, if you ask me.

I am not IN ANY WAY recommending that you do not tip to-go people. They absolutely deserve a tip, especially curbside. But a tip of at least 10% is acceptable to the people I know. Just thought I'd add that.


"Some people have yoga, I have waitressing." - unknown
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tricky
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Posted on Sunday, June 12, 2005 - 07:33 am:   Edit Post Print Post

nuvola, really? I know that Outback only pays server minimum; I was sure that it was Applebee's that had begun to follow them on that decision. I must have been mistaken.

Regardless, since the guest has no way to know if the "server" is being paid a wage or depending on tips, I think 15% is appropriate.


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jenaclaree
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Posted on Sunday, June 12, 2005 - 09:37 am:   Edit Post Print Post

I cannot possibly be expected to tip 15% for somebody to package it and bring it to my car. Every time I go to Outback the total for 2 people is at least $50. So I would be leaving $7.50 for them to bring it out to my car. I have issues with that. Especially since some places seem to pay $7 an hour and some don't. I can see leaving $3 or $4 but I cannot see leaving $7.50.


"Regardless, since the guest has no way to know if the "server" is being paid a wage or depending on tips, I think 15% is appropriate".


You're right I have no way of knowing. That does not mean I have to leave that big a tip. I was not given the same kind of service I would have gotten in a restaurant if I was sitting down. Also when I get Chinese or pizza delivered they do plenty of work as well but somehow the standard for that is $2 or $3 per order. Maybe more if the order is really large. They are actually bringing that stuff to my house. To get to my point curbside tipping is very borderline. Restaurants should not make it the customers problem to pay wages for the whole night. Pizza delivery guys are getting minimum wage plus whatever tips they make. I will not pay 15 to 20 % for this service.
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teleburst
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Posted on Sunday, June 12, 2005 - 11:02 am:   Edit Post Print Post

"I cannot possibly be expected to tip 15% for somebody to package it and bring it to my car. Every time I go to Outback the total for 2 people is at least $50. So I would be leaving $7.50 for them to bring it out to my car. I have issues with that. Especially since some places seem to pay $7 an hour and some don't. I can see leaving $3 or $4 but I cannot see leaving $7.50".

That's why I recommend 10%, unless you are a regualr customer whom they remember time after time. Then you might want to leave more.


"Regardless, since the guest has no way to know if the "server" is being paid a wage or depending on tips, I think 15% is appropriate".


You're right I have no way of knowing. That does not mean I have to leave that big a tip".

Of course not. And tricky didn't demand it of you - just said that was their opinion about what was appropriate.

"I was not given the same kind of service I would have gotten in a restaurant if I was sitting down. Also when I get Chinese or pizza delivered they do plenty of work"

It's a different kind of work to be sure. Most of it is routine housekeeping stuff not particularly related to your specific order. They DO do a lot of cleaning and box-making, but then again, they make more than minimum wage as well. I was surprised to hear that Applebees pays their to-go people better than average, but I can tell you that the people at the restaurant that I work at (also a large national chain) pays their to-go people the same 2.13 an hour as they do servers. We put a lot of emphasis on the personal touch in everything we do, so our to-go people are able to generally average fairly close to 10% tips (no, not everyone tips). If you knew what these guys have to do to get you your order, you'd understand that while the service is different than you'd get tableside, it's still an intense service environment. My guys are usually juggling between 4 and 8 orders at once - they generally handle the phones as well and have to get an accurate order (sometimes difficult in our loud environment). They have to coordinate all of the packaging and provide the proper sauces, and since the food doesn't come out as a complete order, they are bagging up items from up to 8 orders AND they have to be 100% accurate at all times. Still, they have to unbag it at the time that the guest is standing at the bar for their order and check it again. This while there might be 5 other people impatiently waiting in line, even though their food wasn't promised for delivery for another 20 minutes. Our to-go people ring up between $1200 - 2200 PER Dinner SHIFT. For lunch, one of the bartenders usually rings in about $500 - 800 worth of lunch to go food, and since they have to go away from the bar to assemble the orders, this can impact on bar service. On Friday and Saturday night, there are two to-go people, but every other night, there's only one. Plus, they're having to fight for their fod from a kitchen that's trying to put out another $14,000 worth of table food during that shift.

I should also say that they have the same sort of stocking requirements that the pizza delivery guys do. They don't assemble boxes though or mop the floors.

" as well but somehow the standard for that is $2 or $3 per order".

Sounds about right. sounds like 10 -15% to me. Personally, since I usually order for myself at home, my order is about $13 and I usually tip around $2.50. But I'm a waiter, so I'm a little more generous.

"Maybe more if the order is really large. They are actually bringing that stuff to my house. To get to my point curbside tipping is very borderline. Restaurants should not make it the customers problem to pay wages for the whole night".

Well, the answer then would be an added on delivery charge like we do when we deliver to businesses in the area, because if the restaurant starts paying more money, something's got to give. They are already spending a lot of money on those microwaveable containers and fancy paper bags with the twine holders.

Personally, I'd rather that we didn't open up that can of worms, but since Pandora's Box is open, I guess there's no shutting the lid. I'd prefer that my product be served on a plate in a restaurant instead of being trivialized by sticking it a microwave during a commercial. But the business is just too great. I just think it impacts negatively on the in-house guest. Fortunately for us, our to-go servers STILL make good shift money because of the care we take in establishing the service connection with the guest. And the volume is necessary for them to make good money as well.

"Pizza delivery guys are getting minimum wage plus whatever tips they make. I will not pay 15 to 20 % for this service".

Personally, again I think that 10% is appropriate and even our to-go people seem to think that, although they're grateful hen their regulars leave them 15=20%. Makes up for those cheapies who don't think they do anything other than hand them a bag of food, even as they are completely unpacking the bag and going over the order item by item with the guest ('cause lord knows, sometimes the guest has telephonically miscommunicated his or her wishes as well).
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jenaclaree
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Posted on Sunday, June 12, 2005 - 11:33 am:   Edit Post Print Post

I absolutely agree I prefer to eat in a restaurant. In fact Curbside to go just sounds so awful to me. Why would i want to take a quesadilla hom or worse a steak? We know it's not gonna be as hot as if I would have gotten it there.

The average person who has never worked in a restaurant does not know what a to go person is making. That makes the real issue here how much the restaurant should be paying these people. From the numbers you gave me it sounds like they are bringing in enough in sales to maybe pay these people $5 an hour. Just like we said the pizza and Chinese delivery people are making minumum wage. Why would the average person think differently? Like I said before this area is so borderline it becomes very easy for somebody to say this is not my problem and not leave a tip at all. I had a friend who did take out only at Chili's and made minimum wage but also said he averaged $70 on a weekend in tips. I'm starting to think this is thway to go.
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teleburst
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Posted on Sunday, June 12, 2005 - 02:36 pm:   Edit Post Print Post

"That makes the real issue here how much the restaurant should be paying these people. From the numbers you gave me it sounds like they are bringing in enough in sales to maybe pay these people $5 an hour. Just like we said the pizza and Chinese delivery people are making minumum wage. Why would the average person think differently? Like I said before this area is so borderline it becomes very easy for somebody to say this is not my problem and not leave a tip at all. I had a friend who did take out only at Chili's and made minimum wage but also said he averaged $70 on a weekend in tips. I'm starting to think this is thway to go".

The last sentence explains the first. As long as the majority leave SOME tip, there's no reason to pay the server extra money. It's a "dragon eating its own tail" situation. If NOBODY tipped, then one of two things would happen - either a to-go charge would be instituted (some pizza delivery services already do this - the Pizza Huts in my town add .75 an order), or there would be a special to-go menu with higher prices, and if either of these things happened, they'd have to raise the rate of pay to something like $10 an hour to get people to do the work. The third thing is that they raise ALL prices a nominal amount to cover the extra expense of paying people extra money. Right now, this isn't really necessary (at least in our restaurant) since over half of people actually leave some tip (between 5 and 15%) because they realize that there IS service involved (in fact, they might realize that these are servers that COULD be working a tableside section and making money). But I agree that it's more of a gray area than tableside, which is why a lower percentage of people tip less than is really appropriate (once again, *I* think that 10% is approriate). I'd say that about 60% of people leave close to the appropriate tip vs. over 95% of tableside guests. All I'm saying is that people need to evaluate how much effort is involved in assuring that their food is porperly packaged, all associated materials inclosed, an accurate order filled *and* how many other people are served by the to-go person (not always apparent, but if someone thinks about it, they aren't the only person to consider the convenience of getting to-go food). In our case, a to-go person serves a lot more "tables", since each person is picking up the equivalent of a whole table's order. So if *I* wait on 50 people a shift, I'm waiting on about 15-30 tables, whereas if a to-go person is serving 50 people, they are essentially waiting on 50 tables.

I hope that this makes sense.
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rachael9876
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Posted on Monday, June 13, 2005 - 02:09 am:   Edit Post Print Post

First of all Applebee's is not soley a corporate restaurant. Actually it is 75% franchise owned. I am a manager for this company. We pay our carside Carside To Go Specialists minimum wage as required by California State Law. They also recieve tip share.Tip share however is usually split between 4-12 other people. At the restaurant I am with we also try and give our Carside 2 serving shifts a week. If we didn't give them these shifts, most people would not work as Car side Servers. This is because most people are not sure if they are supposed to tip them, and many don't. However, something to consider, our company has standards, we are supposed to greet our curbside guests in 15 seconds, the same as our guests that come in to the restaurant. They are also supposed to tell the guest at what time, not how long, the order will be ready. The Carside server takes the order, rings it in, when the order is ready, they check for accuracy, package the order, then when they see your car pull into our carside parking, they bring the food to you, make change, which for safety reasons they do inside the restaurant at the register and then bring the change back to you. (If we had our carside servers pulling money out in the parking lot every 10 minutes, that would just be asking for trouble, even in a safe quite neighborhood.) I am not saying that this requires a tip, howver something to think about, I watch our carside servers working harder than most regular servers everyday. When the phone rings, they run to get the phone, they are helping everyone else in the store so that they are staying busy during the time they may not have an order, or are waiting for a guest to arrive. The servers inside are able to see that a guest has been seated at a table fairly easily. The To Go servers are trying to watch for cars through moniters while they are packaging food, taking orders, ringing them in, and while they are running in between. There are so many unseen things that servers do for their guests in restaurants that people don't realize can be difficult. I was a server for 5 years, When we started curbside service, honestly, Fast Food was the first thing that came to my mind. I didn't realize how much these people would have to work to get the food to the cars. The curbside servers at most restaurants try to do everything they can to make the guest happy. Most of them do not expect to get tips, or if they do receive tips, they don't expect to receive much. They do however try to provide the best service they can and are never insulted by receiving a tip. So next time you order to curbside to go, if you have a friendly To Go server, you get your food correct and in at the time they tell you it will be, these are just a few things you might want to remeber. They don't just take your order, throw it in a bag and toss it to you through the window. They will be more than happy to run back inside and get anything extra that you need, and if you are a regular they will remeber you, they will rember that you want extra bacon and no salsa, or that you drive a red cavalier and will be there at the exact time that your order is supposed to be ready. If it is not ready, they will come out to your car when you arrive and let you know that it will be a few extra minutes, you will not be ignored. If you have not arrived and your order has been sitting in the To Go containers getting cold they will call you back to see if you want your order remade or heated up. Curbside service is not fast food and the servers are working hard to meet your needs.
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zmn006
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Posted on Monday, June 13, 2005 - 03:43 am:   Edit Post Print Post

I do curbside for Outback Steakhouse and I admit it is a really good job, especially for teenagers. We get paid 4.25 and hour and that is determined by our manager/owner. The rate varies from all over the country. Curbside at my store makes up atleast 1/4 of our business. So we are usually always busy. We are very grateful when people tip. Because are getting paid below minimum wage, we package food, we take orders, we bring them to car and we cash the customers out. Alot of people dont realize the amount of work we actually do. I think thats why many hesitate to tip. Tippin 10% is almost the perfect amount because it makes up for the cheap asses that dont tip. It drives us nuts when people have specialized orders and they want seperate bags, seperate checks seperate everything and it ends up being like a 100$ order and they dont tip anything. I take pride in my job and i work hard to satisfy the customers so a little tip couldnt hurt every once in awhile. The job really does get stressful though and very difficult.
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jammie
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Posted on Monday, June 13, 2005 - 08:22 am:   Edit Post Print Post

Zmn, I have never gotten curbside togo. But I always tip 10% on togo food, except pizza delivery I tip more, more service. I am glad to hear that a 10% tip on curbside is acceptable. I was wondering what is the proper amount, although I would more than likely tip more, again more service.
I have packed up my fair share of togo food in my years of bartending and serving. I never expected to have double digits thrown at me. Somewhat of a tip is nice.
Rumor has it that if we hit the togo key on our computer we are not taxed on the sale. I dont think I buy into that, does anybody know?
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vozveratu
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Posted on Monday, June 13, 2005 - 08:39 am:   Edit Post Print Post

Rumor has it that if we hit the togo key on our computer we are not taxed on the sale. I dont think I buy into that, does anybody know?

Depends on how the computer has the sales coded. Other stuff that you should not be taxed on the sale are Gift Certificates, Smallwares (some people like our chargers), and Togo food (with a togo key).

Sometimes a table will order a dessert to go, so we get taxed on that, but a bartender ringing in only togo orders, should not be taxed on those sales since it's usually untipped sales.

Peace
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zmn006
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Posted on Wednesday, June 15, 2005 - 12:00 am:   Edit Post Print Post

Well at outback theres between 2-3 people working togo so 2-3 people are in the drawer all night so it would be really hard to tax one person. We dont even have to claim all of our credit card tips because they are split among us. We just type in what we "think" we made at the end of the night. But i do have a crappy story to tell. I was working Takeaway and these doctors order 400 dollars worth of food and it took forever to prepare and box up and there was 5 or more bags of food and they didnt leave a single penny. how crappy is that. Just goes to show how stingy people are.
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server7
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Posted on Wednesday, June 15, 2005 - 02:07 am:   Edit Post Print Post

First I would like to thank you for being so concerned that you would ask this question. Second, I'd like to attempt to answer it. As an employee of an Outback Steakhouse, I know that at my particular Outback, the takeaway server is paid 2.38 an hour (although other chains may pay their takeaway servers more), as are the rest of the waitstaff. However, the takeaway server can expect to have sales twice those of the servers in the restaurant, which means that if he or she receives a 10% tip on each order, he or she will earn as much money as a server earning 20% on each order. A 10% tip is expected at my restaurant.

However, I think it is in your best interest to ask each individual server how tipping is done at their restaurant. I am always so taken aback when someone asks me what a good tip is, or what percentage I am usually tipped. I am happy to explain how I am paid (after I am taxed on the tips you give me, which I have to declare to the government, I do not receive a paycheck...thus anything you tip me is all I am going to earn). And how would you like it if our boss one day told you that even though you'd done your work just like always, you wouldn't be paid today, because he or she was cheap or didn't understand payroll, or something to that effect? That is how we feel as servers when we don't receive tips.
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shaug8
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Posted on Friday, June 17, 2005 - 11:57 pm:   Edit Post Print Post

my position as a bartender where I work requires me to do all the take outs, however we don't have curb side. After 5 years of takeouts I can tell you my experience is to not expect anything. I am just saying that because then you don't get dissapionted. I do however have a hit or miss record, some people don't tip and there regulars so you just roll with it and give good service anyway. On the other hand I get complete strangers coming in(were located next to five hotel/motels) that will leave tips that make me almost fall over. I'm not sure this helps, but I will tell you I leave atleast 10% always and more if I'm being a pain in the butt. Also I do do 15% on pizza. If my lazy butt sits on the couch while hot food is brought to my door I just gotta give them props.

Althoug I think I'm turning into a pappa murphys man. That stuff is good and way less expensive, if they have a tip jar I leave them 10% just for all the money I save not order delivery
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jammie
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Posted on Saturday, June 18, 2005 - 12:04 pm:   Edit Post Print Post

shaug8, I had people yesterday with $28.00 in food vouchers from the airline. They had to pay $2.85 to feed a family of four. Its not my fault the airline screwed up the connecting flight and vacation plans. They left me a big fat Zero! I know the trolls will be saying I gave them horrible service, that wasnt it. Nothing went wrong, this wasnt even to go food.
We all hate vouchers because, some tip on the amount owed.
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shaug8
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Posted on Saturday, June 18, 2005 - 10:29 pm:   Edit Post Print Post

I agree jammie when people have vouchers or gift cards, it's like they forget how to tip. As if the the airline is going to chip in or something. unfortunantly most of the time we don't know they have them until after we have given great service, so were stuck with a crappy tip on a meal that was given to them by a relative or company. It's sad to say that these people will never learn. I know my regulars and when they have a gift card or coupon for instance they still tip well. This reminds me of the show airline on cable know matter why people miss the flight or if the airline screws up. People get something from the airline for free so they assume that they don't have to tip. That would cost them extra and they are already pissed off. I wish I had a magic ball that told me who to give service to and who to srew with, not only would that be cool, but I wouldn't waste my time on cheapo's that don't know what good food looks or tastes like.



peace.
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jmvic
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Posted on Wednesday, June 22, 2005 - 10:51 am:   Edit Post Print Post

Applebee's servers have gotten good tips from curbside.
What's the difference between a cheapskate and a canoe?
A canoe tips!
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ashwee
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Posted on Tuesday, July 05, 2005 - 07:03 pm:   Edit Post Print Post

""I cannot possibly be expected to tip 15% for somebody to package it and bring it to my car. Every time I go to Outback the total for 2 people is at least $50. So I would be leaving $7.50 for them to bring it out to my car. I have issues with that. Especially since some places seem to pay $7 an hour and some don't. I can see leaving $3 or $4 but I cannot see leaving $7.50". "

Then keep your cheap self at home! I worked at Outback Curbside for 4 months just to help them out because they couldn't keep people in curbside since the pay was such crap! I had been a server there for 6 months prior and said I'd pick up 2-3 days a week to help them out. That was a open-mouth-insert-foot moment! I was paid $2.13 an hour to answer the phones, deal with the stupidity of the morons who call and DON'T KNOW WHAT THEY'RE ODERING and expect me to wait while they're deciding, ring it in, move things from plates into boxes, put the stupid little butter, sour cream, bacon, chives, and cheese in their own little tubs for EVERY potato, wrap the bread, ensure there was silverware, and then take it out to the car...often in the rain and cold. So when we get your pathetic cheap $2 tip on $50 and it's split between all 4 of us working that shift...well GOLLY GEE THANKS FOR THE FIFTY CENTS! So I'd like to see you run the curb side carry out and then still tip like a cheap ass. I'd get stuck doing curb-side every Friday and some Saturdays...the 2 best nights on the floor and I'd walk out of take out happy when I made $30 for busting my butt. I have scars from burning myself on the bread oven grabbing the bread in a mad rush. But honestly if you don't know what's "appropriate" to tip ask them what their hourly wages are so you don't undertip again. But ALL outback concepts are cheap like that...$2.13 for take out. That includes, Outback, Cheeseburger in Paradise, Carrabbas, Bonefish Grill, Roys, Lee Roy selmon's, Flemmings, and Paul Lee's Chinese Kitchen. So keep that in mind next time...cause I'll tell you when we had someone who didn't tip we'd remember them and I'll leave it at that.
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jenaclaree
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Posted on Tuesday, July 05, 2005 - 09:58 pm:   Edit Post Print Post

"GOLLY GEE THANKS FOR THE FIFTY CENTS!"
You're welcome

"I'd get stuck doing curb-side every Friday and some Saturdays...the 2 best nights on the floor and I'd walk out of take out happy when I made $30 for busting my butt."

They didn't want you on the floor on Friday and Saturday nights? I am absolutely shocked!

"But honestly if you don't know what's "appropriate" to tip ask them what their hourly wages are so you don't undertip again."

Why? Have I lost all sense of class?

"But ALL outback concepts are cheap like that...$2.13 for take out"

So whine and moan to them. Not me.

"...cause I'll tell you when we had someone who didn't tip we'd remember them and I'll leave it at that."

A threat from an Outback take out girl. I'm shaking. You have so much power it frightens me.


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server7
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Posted on Wednesday, July 06, 2005 - 02:18 am:   Edit Post Print Post

Not all Outback concepts are like that. I worked at a Carrabba's that paid two people $4 an hour, and a third person $7 an hour. The third person didn't share in the tips and was called "short shift" and only stayed three hours or so during the rush. So not all concepts are "cheap" like that. I also don't think that Cheeseburger has takeaway; at least the one near me doesn't.
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eed017
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Posted on Tuesday, July 26, 2005 - 02:11 pm:   Edit Post Print Post

I'm really glad I asked. For the most part, you all have really helped clear up my confusion. As to the confusion that other patrons must feel, I have a suggestion for the restaurant owners/managers. The next time you have your to go menus printed up, maybe include a tactful note about tips: while not expected, gratuities are much appreciated for excellent service.

To jenaclaree and others who prefer to eat in restaurants, I usually prefer to eat in restaurants, too. But, there are days after my husband works 12 hours and I get home from my 2 hour commute that I don't think I can sit up at a table and mind my public manners. And since I have no control over whether the table next to me will have a fussy toddler or loud, obnoxious talkers, we just prefer eating in our nice, cool, quiet living room on those nights. Our experience has been that Outback and Applebee's take special care to make sure the dinner is packaged well and ready to serve.

I used to work waitstaff myself and have a special appreciation for all of your hard work. I always aim to tip appropriately for good service, so I am especially grateful to the webmaster for providing this information exchange.
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hassgocubs
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Posted on Tuesday, August 09, 2005 - 02:39 pm:   Edit Post Print Post

I know this post is a bit cold, but I was so intrigued by this (especially since I run into this myself), I asked the Emily Post Institute what their research has found.

To paraphrase their answer:

For carryout orders in which you go in to pick up the order, you're not obligated to tip; however, "you may if the server goes to extraordinary lengths to do something special, but it isn't necessary." In that case, tip $1 to $3.

If they bring the food out to you, it is appropriate to tip, but you tip the server who brings the food to your car based on the service, not the food total. $2 is an appropriate tip per trip of bags, not goo(so if the server comes out once to collect the money, goes back in, comes out with one part of your food, goes back in, and comes out with a second part, you'd tip $4). FWIW: I generally handle a tip like this in cash, even if I were paying with plastic.</li></ul>
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lords_of_acid
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Posted on Wednesday, August 10, 2005 - 08:05 am:   Edit Post Print Post

Ashwee

"But honestly if you don't know what's "appropriate" to tip ask them what their hourly wages are so you don't undertip again."

I know I haven't seen many posts from you, but I like to add something.

Even if you made $5.15/hr, the customer should still give the SAME tip. For one thing, the it's NONE of the customer's business what the car-side-to-go server makes. Secondly, the server may feel it is RUDE for the customer to ask. Thirdly, if the SAME actions are being done at another Outback in a different state for instance that pays at least minimum wage and you are getting $2.13, tell me WHY should the customer tip more for the SAME ACTIONS? It's NOT the customer's problem that the management or state regulates how much these servers get.

Also, since it is NOT, I repeat NOT, full service, 15% would be the very most I'd give and that's if they got the order completely correct. If I ordered a side of ranch and they forgot it, that's NOT my fault that they have to go back inside to get it, even if it is raining. The server should double check BEFORE going to the customer's car.

I just feel the wage the person get's paid has NOTHING to do with the tip as far as the SAME ACTIONS being done. For instance, let's say a bartender at one bar gets $5.15/hr and another bartender gets $8.00/hr, WHY should the bartender that gets $5.15 get bigger tips if he does just as great of a job as the $8.00/hr bartender? It's none of the customer's business what the employee makes.


I have NEVER gotten car-side-to-go before, but I have tipped at Sonic-drive-in. If the server gets the order correct, 15% tip. I feel they are bringing it out to you, they should get something if they brought it out correctly.

"Expect me to wait while they're deciding, ring it in, move things from plates into boxes, put the stupid little butter, sour cream, bacon, chives, and cheese in their own little tubs for EVERY potato, wrap the bread, ensure there was silverware, and then take it out to the car...often in the rain and cold."

For one thing, NO ONE made you stay at that job. I think it is awful they made you do ALL those things for only $2.13/hr. MOST people don't know the servers do these things. I always thought the cook did them, honestly. Another thing is, putting the butter in tubs, wrap bread, etc, is NOT actually serving the customer. That, to me, is ALMOST, just like what I had to do which was to put ketchups, jellies, butters, napkins, and utensils for customer's in drive-thru as well as to-go orders. Yes, you did a little more like getting the bread, but still, I didn't get tipped but less than 10 times in the 2 years I did drive-thru. I had bring out food to customer's vehicles quite a few times, because the boss said so. I had to ask if people can move up in the drive-thru line, because it held up the line if the first person has 2 hamburgers and the next person in line has 1 donut. The boss didn't want to lose business on the customer's that didn't get something that takes a long time. I'd have to bring it out to their vehicle, sometimes in the rain. I DIDN'T get tipped for that. My point is, the customer's are NOT responsible for giving you 20% tip for putting butters, chives, and sour cream etc into a tub. Doing those things is WHAT you are getting $2.13/hr for. Answering the phones shouldn't be the car-side-to go job, it should be the hostess's job. Answering the phone isn't tip worthy at ALL. It is NOT serving someone. So telling us that is IRRELEVANT.

I suggest if the car-side-to-go server feels that $2.13/hr isn't enough, which I don't think it is enough pay for ALL that they are making these servers do, I would say go get another job or even be a server or busser at Outback, not the car-side-to-go server. It's NOT the customer's responsibility to know that these servers do all these things, I honesly NEVER knew this. I thought the cook did all these things and the person just rung it up, put napkins, utensils, or straws, and brought it out to me. I had NO idea they did all these OTHER things.





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jmvic
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Posted on Wednesday, August 10, 2005 - 06:47 pm:   Edit Post Print Post

Friendly's had take-out (yesterday was my last day because I leave for grad school Saturday). I got tipped twice for making cones, but never for takeout. I can't blame the customers, though.
"St. Louis is closer to Minneapolis than Milwaukee is."
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