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The Suburbanite
  • New tipping model could give custumers less say in gratuity

  • A new trend report of restaurants indicates that many upscale restaurants may be ready to shift away from America's traditional gratuity-based pay system.
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  • SALT LAKE CITY - A new trend report of restaurants indicates that many upscale restaurants may be ready to shift away from America's traditional gratuity-based pay system.
    Andrew Freeman and Co. - restaurant and hospitality consultants - suggested in its 2014 industry report that restaurant-goers may encounter more cases of pooled tips and service charges where tipping once existed.
    "I think the fire is lit and is starting to smolder. Maybe not next year, but soon we will see a shift to service charges and service included," said Staffan Terje, chef and owner of Perbacco in San Francisco.
    The company says in the report that several high-end restaurants are adding a service charge to every bill, which covers benefits and higher wages for all restaurant staff. Other restaurants refuse a charge altogether, but compensates staff with salaries, according to the report.
    Some restaurants are still using the traditional gratuity model, but splitting the tips between front of the house and back of the house staff - giving chefs and cooks an incentive to stay put, Andrew Freeman and Co. wrote.
    Currently, tipped employees must make a minimum wage of $2.13 an hour, per federal wage laws.%3Cimg%20src%3D%22http%3A//beacon.deseretconnect.com/beacon.gif%3Fcid%3D136039%26pid%3D46%22%20/%3E

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