. . . . But it is my direct, first-hand personal experience that 15% of Americans are bad tippers, and 15% of Europeans are good tippers. And every server in every tourist town in America will back me up on this.
Show me some stats that even begin to support this.
My experience – and I too travel a lot (and speak several languages, and make part of my living doing translation), have waited tables, and know plenty of people who have waited tables/still do – just doesn't support this. Difference is, I know that any one person's experience, even if it includes lots of other people's war stories, is not enough to base this sort of conclusion on. Perhaps NYC doesn't count as a tourist city?
But I think I'll stop here: like pretty much else in this thread at this point, I'm just repeating myself, and frankly, I'm fine with agreeing to disagree.
How can I show you stats? Perhaps a study has been done about the tipping practices about Americans vs. the rest of the world. But I doubt it. All I can offer is my personal experience and years of observation that most Americans tip fairly well. And that most Europeans/Canadians/Australians do not. And short of a bunch of servers logging in from tourist towns to say, "Yep, you totally nailed it, ScoopKW," you're just going to have to take me at my word.
And keep in mind, I think that in general Europe does a better job of most things. I prefer Europe to the United States. I think they have a far better lifestyle than we do. I'd live there if I could. But when they come to this country, they do not tip. And it hasn't gotten any better in 25 years that I've been in this business.
And this is not the first or even the 100th time I've heard this particular argument. "The system is flawed, so I'll do my part by not leaving any money for the bartender who just mixed me five mojitos."
It's easy enough to get your question answered -- go to ANY tourist town in the United States, and ask the first server or bartender you come across if Europeans (and the rest) are lousy tippers. Then ask the second, and the third, and the 50th and the 100th. Keep asking until you find one who says, "No, Europeans (and the rest) are GREAT! I love seeing a tour bus full of them roll in. When that happens, I know my rent is going to be paid!"
Eventually, you will tire of getting the same answer over and over. Your countrymen don't tip. Or they tip poorly. Or they tip, but do so grudgingly. (EDIT -- There are a few who cheerfully tip their servers and other people in tipped positions. A FEW who don't see the whole business as some sort of legal thievery, personally directed at them. A FEW. But not very many. Like I said before, roughly 15% -- and maybe 5% are cheerful about it.)
Do I like the status quo? No.
Do I think there's a better way? Yes.
Does that give me reason to stiff the bartender who just made my Old Fashioned or the server who hustled, serving me my meal? No.
Edited by ScoopKW, 22 October 2011 - 02:44 PM.
Who cares how time advances? I am drinking ale today. -- Edgar Allan Poe