Author Topic: Tipping  (Read 1719 times)

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BabyMama

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Tipping
« on: May 09, 2007, 09:44:14 AM »
My party's coming up this Saturday. It's being catered--but all the caterers are doing is delivering the food and picking up the dishes the next day (but I'm responsible for washing them.) We live out of town, so I have to pay an additional $60 fee for travel. Do I tip if they're not really doing anything? Everything I come across relates to tipping for a wedding or a company event, not a smaller party where there aren't servers.

Sibby

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Re: Tipping
« Reply #1 on: May 09, 2007, 10:07:20 AM »
Do you usually tip delivery guys?  if yes, tip these ones too (afterall that's what you are talking about, someone delivering), if you don't, don't.  If the person who delivers is the company owner, don't tip, as one never tips a business owner (in any business), only employees.

Personally, I tip everyone (like Steve Martin's character in My Blue Heaven).  For the situation you describe I wouldn't tip a % tho, I'd tip more like a delivery - based on how much/how heavy the items are, anywhere from $5 to $20 per person.

EvilAlice

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Re: Tipping
« Reply #2 on: May 09, 2007, 09:26:20 PM »
Hmmm, this is a new one on me.  I've never dealt with the situation you described.

I think Sibby is on the right track re:  delivery tipping.  On the other hand -$60 delivery fee- you're certainly already paying for this service. 

So much depends on the fee structure and pay structure of the person you're tipping, and you don't really know this missing piece.  How far from town do you live?  I can't imagine the $60 fee only covers gas, like the pizza delivery fee does.

If you can, it wouldn't hurt to throw a little cash, spread the love- maybe keep some cash handy and see if the person delivering is super helpful and goes above and beyond when bringing the food?  I guess that's what I'd do.

kiero

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Re: Tipping
« Reply #3 on: May 09, 2007, 09:28:47 PM »
I guess what fees are you paying and how much do you do?

1) Is the 60$ to cover their travel costs?  Is there another delivery charge over that - which in towners would pay?
2) Do they hand you the trays and leave?  Or do they set them up attractively on the table and make it look nice?

BabyMama

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Re: Tipping
« Reply #4 on: May 10, 2007, 08:51:51 AM »
Well, depending on what part of town they're coming from, with the $60 delivery fee I'm paying anywhere from I think about .60 to .75 per mile (calculating 2 both-way drives, one to deliver and one to pick up their stuff.) But I'm also responsible for cleaning the serveware, etc., so that's one less step of labor required by them. There's no delivery charge for in-town, as far as I know. I'm already paying them about $450 after taxes for the food, which I do feel is a reasonable price for what I'm getting, but is also a week's salary which means I'm not able to free-flow tip money. 

I agree, EvilAlice, that there are some unknowns here! They told me that they would come "set up", which I'm assuming means they'll set things up attractively. They're delivering food for 45 people, and it's a husband-and-wife "we compete as a hobby" team so it'll probably be just them delivering...did that answer any questions?

Sibby

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Re: Tipping
« Reply #5 on: May 10, 2007, 10:05:19 AM »
Well, depending on what part of town they're coming from, with the $60 delivery fee I'm paying anywhere from I think about .60 to .75 per mile (calculating 2 both-way drives, one to deliver and one to pick up their stuff.) But I'm also responsible for cleaning the serveware, etc., so that's one less step of labor required by them. There's no delivery charge for in-town, as far as I know. I'm already paying them about $450 after taxes for the food, which I do feel is a reasonable price for what I'm getting, but is also a week's salary which means I'm not able to free-flow tip money. 

I agree, EvilAlice, that there are some unknowns here! They told me that they would come "set up", which I'm assuming means they'll set things up attractively. They're delivering food for 45 people, and it's a husband-and-wife "we compete as a hobby" team so it'll probably be just them delivering...did that answer any questions?

It's never necessary to tip a businessness owner, they build all their costs & profit into their fee.  But since they are clearly a "small business" a really nice non-cash tip would be to take some good photos of the food displays (before guests dig in) and write them a letter of recommendation (of course assuming you are happy).  You can mail this to them within a few days after your event.  This way they will have a visual and testamony to show to new/prospective clients to help grow their business.

BabyMama

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Re: Tipping
« Reply #6 on: May 10, 2007, 10:39:47 AM »
Oooh, Sibby, that's a good idea. Their webpage is pretty bare of that kind of thing. Thanks for the tip!

elora94

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Re: Tipping
« Reply #7 on: May 20, 2007, 10:13:51 PM »
I hope this helps - I used to work for two businesses that catered.  I think it's right not to tip if the owners are the delivery/set-up people.  However, at least at the businesses I worked for, the delivery people were also the people who prepared/packaged/delivered/set up the food, as though they were servers.  Also, in my experience, if there is an extra fee (normally charged, not as you describe which sounds like a special circumstance) then the delivery people are not getting paid anything extra for the service.  However, if there is an extra fee, sometimes called "set-up" or "delivery" fee, then the workers at the companies I worked for got that fee in cash, as sort of a guaranteed tip.