Is it okay for restaurants to automatically add their tips?

Okay so the other day, before me and my boyfriend went to Prom, we had gone out to eat at an Italian restaurant. The service wasn't that great and the waitress neglected to ask me for a refill. So later when the bill came, she had automatically added in a $6 tip to our bill which equaled to $44.12. Is that legal? Is she allowed to do that.

Updates:
Just to let you guys know, it was just a party of 2. The waitress never asked if we automatically wanted to put the tip in. We got our bill and the tip was already added into the bill and totaled up.
And yes in the US

0|0
9|15

Most Helpful Guy

  • If the automatic tip is disclosed to you, then yes it is legal.
    Many restaurants will have a statement in their menu that says "parties of 6 or more will automatically incur a 15% gratuity". If you eat there, you are legally obligated to pay the gratuity. If you don't see it, then too bad. If you don't want to pay it, go elsewhere.

    If they do not openly disclose the gratuity, you are not obligated to pay for it. The exception is in touristy places, there the standard is that ALL establishments add a gratuity for non-local customers (locals often have proof that they live there, and waive the automatic gratuity)

    0|0
    0|0

Most Helpful Girl

  • Yes it is. At my work we only charge for grat with parties of 6 or more though. This is so ensure we get paid in tips for our hard work. It's a lot of work serving large tables and we rely on tips to make our money (we get paid under minimum wage!) for large parties we charge a 15% grat. For every bill/table, 3% goes back to the kitchen. If a table spends 200 bucks and doesn't tip I lose 6 dollars out of my pocket! So when someone doesn't too us a dime, we lose money working to serve that table. If you're upset about having to tip, don't go out. You are paying to get service. For anyone who's worked in a restaurant they understand much better that it's hard work especially in a busy restaurant like mine - working non stop rushing for 8 hours without a break. Im only working part time through school so I don't want to do it forever. Anyways hope that helps!

    0|0
    0|0
    • It was just me and my boyfriend. Just a party of two. The waitress didn't even ask if we wanted to automatically put the tip in. we weren't aware. Since you've worked in one, do you think that's is legal to do?

    • I think it is. It totally depends on the franchise to automatically include tip with every table (so it's not the waitresses fault). There are pros and cons to having it always included or not so the restaurant decides what they think is best and sets that standard. Just expect everytime you go out to give 10-15% in tip. Next time if it's included automatically in the bill and you're not impressed with service definitely talk to a manager!

What Guys Said 14

  • I think it is a total scam, and when they do that, and the service is bad, I call the manager over, and explain why the service was bad, and I am not paying that.
    If they insist, I tell them that it is fine, and I will not only challenge the charge on my credit card with B of A, or Citibank, but I will also JUST LOVE posting my experience on Yelp, and telling everyone I know about what a crap place they have!! Usually that resolves it, and you get offered a dessert or something.
    Needless to say, I NEVER go back to those places!!
    They have no legal right to do that, and they just try it, assuming nobody will complain, and then they get away with robbing you for bad service!!

    0|0
    0|0
  • i believe it depends on the establishment, but what I'm accustomed with, is that the gratuity charge is allowed, when it's usually a part of 6+ people.

    just you and your boyfriend? she fucked you guys good. unless there is a disclaimer that it is restaurant policy to be able to do so.

    0|0
    0|0
  • A gratuity is usually put on for 8 or more people if I remember correctly. But I'm wondering if this place is trying to stop tipping all together, some places are in the US, but they would of just increased the entree prices. You know what I would do if I were you. I'd call up and see if you could talk to a manager or maybe the Manger that worked that night. Just ask them. Its not gonna hurt.

    0|0
    0|0
  • A Service charge is common in most places outside the US and I suspect a few within the US do it too.

    0|0
    0|0
  • It's completely legal. Some restaurants do that so the waiters get a consistent tip because some people barely tip or don't tip at all

    1|0
    0|0
    • A lot of restaurants in Europe include the tip but it's not as common here

  • this is going to depends on the regulations where you live. You should write a letter to the owner and let them know how bad the service was.

    0|0
    0|0
  • tipping is a custom that needs to be abolished.

    0|2
    0|0
  • I think it's legal but I don't really like it. Not common where I live

    0|0
    0|0
  • Yes.

    0|0
    0|0
  • Yes, it is legal, but it's also courtesy to disclose that information beforehand.

    0|0
    0|0
  • lmao no

    0|0
    0|0
  • Totally allowed.

    0|0
    0|0
  • ye tips good

    0|0
    0|0
  • It is being outlawed in our country.

    0|0
    0|0

What Girls Said 8

  • No, it's not okay. I mean it IS, but it shouldn't be. Tipping is a choice. If you enjoyed the service of that waitress, you give them a tip. Otherwise, they can go f*ck themselves.
    My mother has been a waitress for a very long time, so I can see where they come from, but you shouldn't automatically charge them the cost of the tip. Some restaurants do it to save time on a busy day, but even then they should take a second out of their day to ask the customers about it.

    What if the service was terrible or the waitress had an attitude? If that happened to me, I don't think they'd deserve a tip at all, or maybe they only deserve half of it. I'd say "forget that place" and never go back to it.
    Tipping seems to be a common courtesy, but I'd only tip the people that I feel deserve it.

    0|0
    0|0
  • Usually at very nice places or if it's a very large party (12 or more) gratuity will automatically be added in since most people don't bother calculating a fair tip for their servers.
    If the place does automatic gratuity, it will be posted somewhere in the restaurant, usually the menu or online so that consumers know the policy. If she added it without that then it is illegal. You could've/should've asked to speak with management right away. You might still be able to but now it's easier for her to get away with it if it was done illegally

    0|0
    0|0
  • You can subtract the tip, cross it out and write "no tip" .."poor service"... And only pay the amount due subtracting the tip. And yes, many restaurants hav started to add the tip on the total.

    Just the same, when paying with credit card.. Make sure to write a big zero on tip and a line across it, so that no one cal alter it.. If you don't put anything, they can put whatever they want , and you won't even know unless you check your stuff regularly.

    0|0
    0|0
  • They can suggest it but it's kinda rude to just add it automatically without asking the customers. I noticed a lot of restaurants calculate 15%, 17%, 20% of the bill and include those numbers at the bottom (sort of like estimates) and allow the customer to decide how much they wanna tip.

    0|0
    0|0
  • In France it's standard.

    0|1
    0|0
  • It is legal people are allowed to do it and it saves a lot of time and effort. Waiters and waitresses work for tips. If your service wasn't up to par you should've asked to speak to the owner. Welcome to reality

    1|0
    0|0
  • I don't think that is allowed

    0|0
    0|0
  • In the US? I've only seen that when its party's of 6 or more.

    0|0
    0|0
Loading...