Tip of the day

June 12, 2013 in Eccentric Ringoism

Today i want to talk about tipping!!!

One of the hardest things we had to do in Europe (and Africa) was to tip people.

I’m from Asia and i am not familiar with the whole tipping culture. The most we do here in Malaysia is to round up the fare for a taxi driver, or leave some loose change after paying the bill. I never have to dig out my wallet to pay anyone extra for whatever product or service i have already paid for. For the Japanese it is even stranger. There’s no such thing as tips. End of story.

So every new country we went, the danna asked me to google if tipping is required, and how much.

We started from Greece all the way to western Europe. We tipped most of the time in every country, in restaurants, at hotels, to tour guides and drivers, etc.

It was fine until we went to Egypt.

Now i think tipping should just be abolished in this world. I got super angry that in Egypt, we were forced into giving 500 different kinds of tips for people who have or have not helped us in anyway. It was like donating to thieves.

In Europe we were so doubtful and nervous all the time. Should we tip this person? If yes, how much? Is what we gave too little, or too much?

We started to feel confused about people who are genuinely helpful to us, or are friendly to us because they wanted our money. We have come across soooo many people who offered to help us carry stuff, take picture, find directions, and after that stretched their palm out, touched their five fingers together and put close to their mouth.

We were appalled. We realized later that it happens. All the damn time. In the end we just refused help from anyone and chose to be the skeptical ones.

We felt annoyed that people have to remind us that service fee is not included in the bill, we felt pissed off to have to tip at a shitty restaurant that serves shitty food just because tipping is the norm, and we felt horrible if we didn’t tip people who actually expected us to tip. The whole tipping experience was just super stressful!!!!

It ruins trust between people and strains human relationship. It generates disappointment. Everybody becomes judgmental (Not another stingy Asian!/If i don’t tip this waistress she will spit in my food tomorrow) And it encourages dishonesty.

In Egypt, our entire holiday mood was ruined because we had to pay so much extra for shit we have already paid for. Do you know that after paying full amount for a guided tour, your tour guide is not allowed to enter the Pyramid tombs with you because inside there will be other “guides” who will seem very enthusiastic to explain everything to you AND THEN ask for tips?

TIPPING SHOULD BE ILLEGAL IN THIS WORLD.

I understand that in countries like America, tips means life for a waitstaff. Their wages are low and they survive on their customer’s generosity. I get it.

But i think that whatever extra cost of labor should just be built in the selling price from the beginning. And the customer pays ONE price. The end. It makes things so much easier.

Now you will say in that case it is not fair for a staff who make extra effort to work harder and be polite to receive the same amount of money as a lazy and rude staff does.

Guess what? Lazy and rude staff should just be FIRED. They don’t deserve a job.

Tipping should not be a way to motivate good service, because good service should be made natural (or the least compulsory). I don’t understand why this is so baffling to so many people.

If the service and food in a restaurant is unicorn shit amazing, by all means, shove a bill to your favorite waitstaff. But it was me, i will simply pay whatever is written on the bill, and tell the people in the restaurant how they made my day.

In Barcelona we had the most delicious meal at a tapas bar. We had to line up for about half an hour for our seat. And every customer, before leaving, they told the chef/staff “it was absolutely amazing, thank you“. I could see how happy and proud it made the people who work there feel.

Anyway. It would be melted cheese awesome if every time you read a post on this blog, whether you like it or not, you Paypal me RM1. And i will be quite rich.

While i appreciate your monetary generosity, i much, much prefer, and will be much, much happier, if you just drop a comment, or send in an email occasionally, to tell me how reading that particular blog post has made your day. Because i know that is real. And it makes me want to be better.