This isn’t your typical dining-out-is-bad-for-the-budget post. Of course, you should eat out less if you’re trying to save money or repay debt. It is essential that your spending aligns with your priorities. So most millennials know–or at least have been told ad nauseam–to cut back on the fine and not-so-fine dining. However, from one millennial to another, I would like to go so far as to state that at least one-third of millennials should stop eating out altogether. Period. Forever. Or at least until they learn how to tip.
Where does 33% come from? Let me take you down the rabbit hole that is my Twitter account. I am mesmerized by all things tip-related, primarily because I still have yet to find an answer as to whether or not I need to tip the fro-yo guy. So when Time tweeted an article about 21 restaurants that have done away with tipping, I had to click. That article linked to another article about 15 things that you might not know about tipping. That article linked to the results of a 2014 Harris Poll online survey that showed millennials are terrible tippers. According to that poll, about 1 in 3 millennials admits to tipping less than 15% when dining out.
These results are terrifying for several reasons:
- People lie on surveys all the time. To make themselves look better.* My guess is that more than 33% of millennials are bad tippers. They just didn’t admit it.
- Most teens have worked in food service at some point. So get some ginko, millennials. It wasn’t that long ago that you were blowing up my Facebook feed with tales of terrible tippers when you were touting the trays.
- If you can’t afford to leave a proper tip, you have no business dining out. There. I said it. I’ve never had to wait tables. I have had terrible service before. And I still think that if an extra dollar or two makes that big of a difference to you, you don’t belong in a restaurant. You belong in your kitchen.
The most insulting part of the whole poll is the justifications given as to why millennials are terrible tippers. Some of the excuses? Millennials are used to eating at Chipotle. They don’t have a lot of experience dining out. They’re hard-pressed to find jobs. Quite frankly the best justification is a joke in the article: millennials can’t do math.
Sadly, none of these excused hold any water. The moral of this story is an easy one: If you can’t afford it, stop eating out.
*Source: My annual wellness screening questionnaire that I have to take for my insurance. I never experience any stress in the workplace. Except for when my students try to make rubber gloves out of Elmer’s glue. And cry when they pull the hair off their arms when they try to clean up. And then I remember that they are 12. Not 4.
So Tell Me…Are you a millennial? Do you know how to tip? Seriously, though, do you ever leave less than 15%?