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etiquette mistakes all the way around

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I ordered food for myself and a friend online and thought I hit the "tip X% with credit card" button. Because I didn't actually hit anything, the default went to "tip with cash". Another friend met me in the parking lot and she decided to wait with me while we chatted.

The delivery man showed up and when I said "thank you!" and reached for the food, he pulled it back and said "You're tipping me cash, right? It says tip with cash on here." He then proceeded to stare at me and wait with the food down by his side, and I said "I'm so sorry, I thought I hit a different button that tipped you online. I don't have any cash"-and my friend cut in and said "Oh, I have some cash on me." She turned to me and held out a wad of money (with some fives and twenties mixed in) and said "I don't know how much your bill was so I don't know how much you want the tip to b"-and the delivery man interjected and said "Oh, all of that's good. That whole handful right there." in a (somewhat) joking tone. The food remained at his side until I grudgingly peeled off a couple of dollars and handed them to him.

What I was going to say before my friend interrupted was that I would call the place, explain the situation, and try to tip him over the phone or online. By the time the transaction ended I wished I hadn't tipped him at all. When I called the restaurant to explain the situation (I wasn't happy at all with the driver) they said "He wasn't doing anything wrong asking you for a cash tip, you know."  The whole encounter left me with a bad taste in my mouth. I can't tell if we were all in the wrong or what.

I don't think he was wrong.

I am sure he was pretty uncomfortable having to ask for his own tip.

You weren't in the wrong. Mistakes happen, and its a part of life. The fact that you were going to rectify the situation makes you clear of any etiquette mistakes in my eyes. Your friend is awesome, by the way.

And the delivery driver... yeah. No. that was rude. If you don't get a tip, you don't say a word. Period. It is unfortunately a fact of those types of jobs that occasionally you don't get a tip.

The manager? Oh he was way way out of line.

Wow.  I get that these guys work for tips, but his aggression was out of line.  Your friend was nice to jump in and help out.  In addition, the taking back of the food... really?  When we get delivery, we get the food and then sign the slip and either a) add gratuity or b) give cash when that is settled.  It's the last thing to be done.  How did this guy know you weren't going to hand over the cash once you got the food?  His assumptions are rude as well.

Who did you speak with at the restaurant?  If it wasn't the manager on duty, that would be my next step.  If it's a chain, I would also write a letter to their corporate office including how you were treated when you tried to call and discuss the situation.  If that's the culture they are promoting, they don't deserve anyone's business.

I don't have any problem with customary tipping, but doesn't mean people can just be demanding.

I think he could have been much more friendly, etc., in asking about the tip.

I don't think he was wrong at all to ask about it, but he needed to do it in a way that didn't make you feel almost assaulted. He should have asked in a way that made you feel that he was reminding you, or alerting you to what the form said.

My DH left too little money even to cover the bill this weekend--he thought he'd put a $10 on the tray, and he'd grabbed the $5 next to it.

The waiter stopped us as we were leaving. He was almost *too* apologetic for comfort, but he certainly started as though we'd simply made a mistake. Which we had (we'd also intended to tip him big, bcs he was helpful w/ the gluten thingie).

I think we might have been less likely to go back there, or less likely to tip big, if he'd made us feel like we were cheaters.


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