Why do some people tip poorly or not at all?

iVillage Member
Registered: 08-24-2006
Why do some people tip poorly or not at all?
Mon, 02-25-2013 - 12:52am

I have been a licensed manicurist for over nine years, and have recently became a licensed massage therapist as well. A big part of the reason I got into this line of work is the pay, and tips are customary. Tips make up about 40% of my pay as a manicurist, and over 50% of my pay as a massage therapist. I really love my both of my jobs and enjoy the work, but I wouldn't be doing it for 40-50% less pay.

I really can't fathom why someone would tell me I did a beautiful job, that they feel brand new, that they want to come back to me every month, and then leave a tip of less than 10% or even sometimes none at all. I do everything in my power to keep my clients happy and do the absolute best job I can. I have a lot of pride in the level of my work. I don't half ass it, even if I'm not feeling great or having a bad day. I am always warm and friendly, even when the clients don't return that to me. The receptionists always ask if they would like to leave gratuity, so it can't be that they don't know (it has to be added in on the computer with our checkout system, rather than written in on the reciept.

I am not complaining about how much I make, because even with the rare low/non tipper my tips still average out to be at least 20% of the total bill. Obviously it's worth it to me to keep doing what I do. I know there will always be people who don't follow the customs and that is just part of the job. I'm just trying to understand why someone would intentionally do that in the first place if they are happy with the service they recieved? I mean I get that a lot of people don't like the institution of tipping and would like to see it go away (I even agree in some ways), but do you think you are going to change that by being part of the 1-2% that refuse to do it? Why punish the person who just cut your toenails? How does that make sense? It especially galls me when these people make appointments during my busiest days and times and my regular clients who tip me well cannot get in as a result. 


iVillage Member
Registered: 12-17-2003
Thu, 03-07-2013 - 3:16pm

Did you neglect to read the very next sentance in that paragraph? Where I said that I have always wondered why some people find it acceptable to undertip, and I can't exactly ask the clients?

Yes, I did, and I replied to it. DId you see my reply?

I am more than capable of doing my job well and treating the clients well regardless of how much they tip though. It is centainly possible to be bothered by something and not let it show. Anyone who works with the public should have developed this ability.

I was commenting on the fact, as you posted, you treat low tippers differently. IMO, that's having an attitude, more so then just being bothered, but actually acting on it. From your statements, you do treat your clients differently based on how they tip.

Umm, becuase it's rude to expect other people to pick up your slack?

See, IMO, this statement shows an attitude. Why would assume anyone is thinking someone else should pick up the slack? And why is it rude? Because that's what you were taught? Some people think it's rude for people to expect and decide what they deserve as a tip. Some people are taught to be grateful when someone tips them. IDK

Because I worked just as hard on the person who left me $2 as I did the person who left me $15 for the exact same service?

A lot of people work hard. The personing giving you a $2 tip probably works hard as well.

IMO, averaging $18 an hour is a good salary for the work a tech does. JMO I would feel grateful anyone would tip me and hand over their hard earned money, but that's just me.

if the server's income for the day winds up being plenty for them to live on despite my crappy tip

hmm, not what I said, by your posts you end up earning a fair salary for your job. I still don't know why you would be bothered because a few don't tip what you think you deserve.

We are talking about luxury services here

Techs provide a service. Period. The idea it's a luxury service is what you deamed it to be. And people do factor in the type of service they are receiving. If one gives better service to select customers then, well, I probably would not tip them all that well either. Just like in a restaraunt, I don't care what I am eating, if the people at the next table are getting better service them I am, I am not tipping the server as well.

Nothing I mentioned in that paragraph is a normal or expected part of my job, nor is it "attitude" for me to give people everything they are paying for with a smile.

Jeeze Age, you provide special services for those you feel deserve it. It doesn't matter if it is normal or expected. All people should be treated the same.

I will happily go above and beyond for people who make it worth my time and effort.

You don't think that statement above shows some attitude?

IDK Age, you asked a question on a debate board and it seems like you already have the answers. If I don't agree it must be because I didn't read your posts? Sorry, I just don't see this as a big deal. People have their reasons and since it doesn't effect your overall income, I would just keep doing my job and let it go ... treating all people the same, of course.

Such as?

I answered this several times. Maybe, if you have time, you can go back and reread the posts.