Americans Are Very Confused On How Much They're Supposed To Tip, According To A New Survey

If you order a quick coffee, a fast-casual meal, or a delicious meal at your favorite local restaurant, you may be asked to tip the server or staff. 

Over a dozen gratuity-related questions were asked to almost 12,000 U.S. adults by Pew in August. The survey found that most people don't know when or how much to tip. 

Only 34% of participants said adding the right amount to the bill was "extremely or very easy," while 33% said the same.

Additionally, 72% of respondents said tipping has increased in businesses or been requested in the past five years. 

About 72% of respondents agree that giving each server an equal share of tips is the fairest way to distribute gratuities. 

Conversely, 14% support tipping all personnel, including table bussers, hostesses, and bartenders. A further 13% believe that pooling tips and sharing them evenly among all servers is most fair. 

Tipping also varies by context and how someone eats or drinks. At a table, 92% of participants tip "always or frequently". Most responders (76%) tipped "always or frequently" on delivery orders and 70% at establishments.

Only 25% of participants "always or frequently" tip in fast-casual restaurants like Panera or Chipotle, where orders are not brought or placed by a server, and 12% at coffee shops. 

Service quality determines client gratuities most. Eighteen percent called it a "minor factor," while 77% called it a "major factor." Five percent said they didn't consider the service. 

Participants prefer liberty in setting gratuity levels over computerized recommendations. 32% of respondents were impartial, while 40% "strongly or somewhat oppose" suggested rules.

Gratuity recommendations were most opposed by respondents 65 and older, while those under 30 were split. One-third (31%) of respondents "favor" proposals, while 33% oppose them. The remaining 32% were neutral. 

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