• May 23, 2018, 09:41:16 PM

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Author Topic: Well, there's an attitude toward tipping I've never seen before (Dear Abby 1-31)  (Read 11534 times)

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I used to work at a coffee shop with a tip jar. People were always stealing money from it, even though it was labeled. I had more than one customer get very hostile with me when I objected to them stealing my tips. I probably didn't make matters better because I was barely scraping by at the time and my tips were what paid for my food (usually ramen) so I would get really pissed off at the thieves. Sometimes, generous people would leave a dollar or two. I learned quickly to never leave more than one bill in the tip jar, because any extras would absolutely be stolen the second my back was turned.

And, FTR this was over 10 years ago, so it's not even like it's something new. :(
“Poetry is a sword of lightning, ever unsheathed, which consumes the scabbard that would contain it.” PBS


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My husband works for Starbucks and the location that he started at used to have the tip jar stolen at least once a month.  They finally epoxied it down on the counter with managerial approval.  They also had to empty it every time someone put a bill into it.  Those tips are 1/5 of his salary.  You are stealing directly from the people that the tips are intended for.

The store that he transferred to  is much better abouth theft, but people will treat it like a "take a penny tray" if the employees are not careful.

Paper Roses

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Wow.  The only way I could imagine it being anywhere even close to acceptable would be if someone was making change - meaning, putting in a dime and taking out 2 nickels.  Obviously, that's not the case here.

I also dislike tip jars, but stealing from them is all kinds of wrong.
All those with two, draw one.  All those with none, turn one in.


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Oh yes, this happens often enough that we would hide the tip jar when we saw certain people coming! Occasionally people would make a mistake and think it was 'take a penny', and that wasn't a problem. If someone was short a few pennies, I would take them out of the tip jar and let them do it, it was usually appreciated! But every so often there were people who just don't care.

I also really could live without people informing employees how they aren't leaving a tip, tip jars are wrong, etc etc. Just...don't leave a tip. No need to make a production out of how you aren't doing it.


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Wow, that's horrendously rude and entitled. An honest mistake is one thing (if the container is not clearly labelled) but if the sign says "Tip Jar", there's really no excuse.

I hope that in this case, employers back up their staff, when faced with screaming customers who try to take the money. This is one case where the customer is absolutely NOT right!


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Short version: The LW works in a college campus donut shop and has had several people help themselves to the contents of her tip jar if they are running a few cents short in paying for their order.  When she objected, one lady called her selfish and told her that the money in the jar wasn't just for her.

The lady's right -- the tip money wasn't just for her.  It was for her and the other employees! Not greedy customers!

I've never heard of this, and am even more discouraged to read here that apparently it's a common problem.


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    • Trees downed in my yard by Ike and the clean up
The koloche shop I go to has a tip jar. One Saturday I went in they didn't have enough pennies go give me my change. I told them to it was ok, but they took the pennies out of the tip jar to give me.

The next person tried to take a dollar out of the tip jar to pay for their stuff - that didn't go well. The weird part she had seen me put the dollar in the tip jar.

They are real nice. One time I went in and only had 20s from the ATM. Someone had come in just before me and wiped out their change. They were waiting for the bank to open to go get change. They just gave me my order for free. My Saturday routine is to go there, then grocery shop. I drive back by on my way home. So I stopped back there and paid for my breakfast since I had smaller bills.
Don't Teach Them For Your Past. Teach Them For Their Future


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The problem is, some places put out "leave a penny, take a penny" containers, where you are expected to take a few cents if you need them. It's a convenience for the shop as well as the customer - less hassle making change.

I think the problem here is that the customers are truly confused as to the difference between a tip jar and a LAPTAP container. I'm sure many customers are confused and humilated that the worker is objecting to her/him taking money that the customer honestly believes was available for them. I think the lady who said the money was "not just for them" was under this impression.

Taking if you know it's a tip jar is stealing, but I think a lot of this is "there is a little box of coins here - can I use them, or not?" If it doesn't state the purpose clearly, it can be genuinely confusing.

I think I've dropped a fair amount of change into LAPTAP containers just on the off-chance they're for tips.
"The sky's the limit. Your sky. Your limit. Now, let's dance!"


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I'd to give people the benefit of the doubt when it comed to tip jars and take-a-penny, leave-a-penny trays (TAP-LAP), but in my experience they look very different. You see dollar bills in tip jars, not in the TAP-LAP trays. And tip jars are labeled "TIPS" in every place I've seen them.

An inability to read the label? Maybe. But, honestly, I think most people who fish money out of a tip jar have a super high sense of entitlement, and pretty much live their life thinking rules are for others, and not them.


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  • YOU'RE.. MAKING.. ME.. BEAT.. UP.. GRASS! - Rocket
Wow!   That is really sad.

I don't tend to tip into tip jars, but at least I know better than to take money from them.  But I also almost never use the LAPTAP bowls either, I'm usually using my plethora of pennies in my purse/wallet.  (DH doesn't like pennies in his pockets, so he has a tray he dumps them in, and I help myself to that tray, on his desk).


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I used to work summers at a snack bar at a pool area at a very upscale apt. complex. We would put out a tip jar the last week of the season. One year we caught an older lady walking off with it.