Tips - Cheers

Posted on 25th August 2015


Cheers to all who work in hospitality. They often work unsociable hours, receive the National Minimum Wage and rely on tips for extra money, smiling all the while - regardless of customers' behaviour.

Many students will be getting ready for university and looking for part-time jobs.  Before deciding whether or not to accept a job in hospitality, it pays to carry out some research on the tipping policy of the organisation. Have a look at this recent Observer article where a union claims that some waiting staff pay a percentage of table sales.

Food for thought

  • Those working in hospitality must be paid at least the National Minimum Wage and any service charge added to a bill cannot be used to top-up wages to reach the National Minimum Wage when paid directly to the worker by the customer.
  • Some places let staff keep the whole amount of tips.
  • Others take a percentage of credit card tips.
  • In places where there is a troncmaster, that person decides how the money is shared out amongst staff, often including non-waiting staff.
  • Where service charge is compulsory and handled by the employer, that service charge is not a tip. The business will often deduct an amount for admin and credit cards and then share out the rest amongst staff but does not have to.

Businesses should ensure there is a clear policy in place. Policies should address tips, service charges and any deductions not just for staff but for customers too, especially when they are asked how tips are distributed. Many of us want to know that staff are being treated fairly and this could be a great marketing opportunity for those businesses that allow all cash tips to be kept by staff or who do not add a service charge to a bill. 

How much do you reckon is the average tip in the UK?  £4.18 according to the article in the Telegraph. Here's hoping Amy Schumer drops in.